Our journey in Denmark was determined to a great degree by where we could find a place to stay. We knew that we wanted to ride up the west coast to the north and then down the east coast – but there was always a problem in finding a place which was affordable. Denmark is a very expensive country. Hours were spent with our maps and checking Booking.com – this photo was taken in a hostel where we stayed in Rosklev and which was a part of a sports complex.
This photo taken near the end of a long day – 9 hours on the way and another hour to go!
Inevitably, we discussed the Danish mentality a lot – the emotional distance, the Scandinavian aloofness – and I think we began to understand matters after visiting their churches. Most churches were similar – and they were reminiscent of the small churches we had seen during bike trips to the north of The Netherlands, where most people in the past were Protestant. A. , whose family originally came from the north said that in the past, the people there were well-known for their emotional restraint, stiff upper lip mentality – ‘you didn’t say anything unless you had something to say’.
The Danish churches were unmistakably Scandinavian Lutheran – no alcoves, no statues, no unnecessary ornamentation – a greater contrast with a Catholic Cathedral can hardly be imagined. The triumph of rationality over emotion.
Our ride along the west coast took us along a slither of land filled with dunes. At Hvine Sande we stopped for a couple of days to take a rest. There was a port for the fishing trawlers which ply the North Sea when the weather permits….
The place we stayed at in Hive Sande. It was a two-story wooden house rented by a Polish man who worked in the nearby fishery. The owner was a retired Danish fisherman – he was happy for his Polish tenant to rent out the top story to tourists, just as long as none of the pictures and mementos on the walls weren’t removed. No problem for the Pole, who not lacking in a sense of humour put his accommodation on the net as ‘The Sailors’ Cave’ and with its creaking wooden floors, it was very much like a ship.
The Sailors’ Cave was near the beach – constantly swept by strong winds. In the winter, we were told, there wasn’t much snow because of the proximity to the sea. There were instead icy gale force winds and mountainous seas – tough conditions for fishing trawlers…..
On the road again ….it becomes an addictive habit every morning getting up, packing in and riding off. We just want to keep going and never stop…..
See also ‘Waving the Flag’: