How to Cure a Headache

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October 25th 2011
Published: October 25th 2011
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Another pop quiz:
Which of the following made Anna's train ride from Calais, France, to Copenhagen, Denmark, an epic disaster?
a. The over-night train was booked because of locals taking advantage of a school holiday, so she had to take the 2:00 AM train.
b. Sitting in the rail station until 2:00 AM so exhausted her that she slept through her connecting train.
c. The connecting train she finally got on broke down.
d. The total train ride took 32 hours.
e. All of the above.
The correct answer is.... E! EVERYTHING BAD HAPPENED ON THAT TRAIN RIDE. I was peeved.

If you think that it couldn't get any worse, though... well, you'd be right, because since then everything has been a dream come true. I spent the weekend in Denmark with Ksenija, the niece of my aunt Vlasta, and her husband, Mladen. I got to sleep on their couch, take a shower, and eat! Ksenija and Mladen are fantastic cooks, so I feasted on home-made food all weekend long. Plus I got to Skype with my mom and dad! We also watched American movies, mainly featuring Jim Carrey. It was wonderful.

Mladen also took the time to tell me what I should see in Copenhagen. He showed me on a map where the best churches were, what all tourists had to do, and where the main street was. As a result, I thoroughly enjoyed myself as I wandered around Denmark's beautiful capital. Tourist season is dying down, so I was not getting bumped around as much as in England, and the leaves in full autumn color littered the sidewalks, making it the perfect day out.

It was reminiscent of earlier in the week, which was another perfect time. God blessed me with sunshine! In fact, it has not rained for about a week and half, which is a miracle. It's been windy, but oh well. I was in southeastern England, which was absolutely gorgeous. I visited the Visitation Monastery Sisters in East Sussex--they served me tea and cakes! I also graced Dover with my presence. I got to tour the underground tunnels where the evacuation of Dunkirk (Operation Dynamo) was masterminded during World War II. Check this out: though Dover got shelled and bombed by the Nazis every single day because of its proximity to France, the tunnels were not hit even once because Hitler, oblivious to their presence, wanted to keep Dover Castle in tact for propaganda use after he had conquered England! In your face, Hitler!

Then, as holy as I am, I prayed at Canterbury Cathedral. In keeping with my anti-tourist mode, I refrained from taking a tour of the cathedral but instead attended Evensong, which was inspiring, of course.

From there, I took the ferry to Calais, and then onto that blasted train.

Now I'm in Malmö, Sweden. Later today I'll be headed up to Stockholm, and then to Oslo, Bergen, and the fjords in Norway, and then to Lapland. I'm so excited! No one ever talks about touring Scandinavia, so it's like scouting new territory. Plus it's beautiful. Plus the sun is shining (again). Plus I'm on a travel high. Indeed, I realized yesterday that I will be sad when this trip is over. I am truly enjoying myself.

Please realize how much you are all missing out.



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