Tag Archives: life

April 15

I have spent most of the last three days working on a pitch for a local charity and, although exciting as a creative challenge, the subject of the brief was very depressing. We had to address the issue of “berøringsangst,” a Danish term which, in the context of the brief, refers to the fear of talking about death; that sense of awkwardness and anxiety that sometimes prevents us from reaching out, especially to grieving children and adolescents, just because we are afraid of saying or doing the wrong thing.

Turns out that for people who are dealing with a loss, or that are fighting a serious illness, one of the hardest parts of their experience is seeing their friends and family paralysed by fear and going silent, distant and withdrawn. Contrary to what most of us believe, and as Geo eloquently explains in the video below, the worst we can do in this situations is not doing anything at all.

Pretty powerful, isn’t it? I took Geo’s talk as a starting point and from there I started delving into every article I could find on the subject, as well as academic papers and self-help books. The more I read about it, the more I became anxious about my family’s mortality, something that has always haunted me ever since I moved to Europe almost five years ago. Reading stories of really young kids who lost their parents or siblings to an illness or a violent accident was heartbreaking and disturbing, it really made me think how lucky I am and how difficult it should be to confront such situations. The thought is terrifying.

And that was the hardest thing about this brief… having to put yourself on the shoes of those kids for a second, trying to understand what it must feel like to lose your parents at a young age in order to understand how berøringsangst could be addressed. Not an easy task, I tell you. How could I possibly imagine that? No matter how much I read about it, I always felt the ideas I was coming up with were only based in loose assumptions and I don’t think I got to fully discern all the nuances and implications of the issue. It didn’t help that we only had just a couple of days to research, decode that information, conceptualize and execute, but we did our best within our limitations and although I think we could have thought our concepts through a bit more, I also know that’s just the way things are sometimes. We’ll see what happens.

On a positive note, though, I went to Roskilde during the Easter break with Kat and her Dad. It was a lovely, sunny day that we spent looking at viking ships and walking around the Roskilde Cathedral, a beautiful Gothic building where many Danish monarchs are buried and that has been recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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We also spent a few days in the company of little Stevey Wonderful, who brought us hot cross buns and chocolate eggs, just enough calories to keep us walking around town, showing her the city views. It was so nice to see her and I hope she can make it back to Copenhagen in August as she promised.

To top it all off, Kat gave me a Instax Mini as a present! I have been planning to get that camera for a while but she just went ahead and got it for me first so we started using it right away :)

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We now have a little box where we’re storing our photos and I’m sure it won’t be long before we need to find a bigger one…

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April 25

Yesterday, I went bowling for the first time in at least 6 years and let me tell you something, it was really fun. I went with Carlos, Dia, Jana and Anastasia to Bowling Dgi-byen, a nice place close to the Central Station. Carlos beat me just by 4 points but at least I managed to get 3 strikes, almost in a row, which pissed Carlos off a bit (that, of course, is a good thing).

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After bowling, Carlos and I went to Cafe Obelix for a drink and Katrine joined us shortly after (she had been in Sweden for the day on a work assignment and bought me back a little present) and we stayed there until 11pm or so, although Carlos had to leave a bit earlier to go home and pack his suitcase as he was leaving early this morning to Madrid for some high-school friends reunion in Madrid.

A really enjoyable night out we promised to repeat very soon.

* * * *

A couple of days ago, I was reflecting on how much things have changed for me in Copenhagen since I first moved here: I arrived in the middle of the cold Nordic Winter, straight to work, in a city where I basically knew no one. The first four or 5 months I spent pretty much going from my house to the office and from there back home, on my own. It was difficult to establish meaningful relationships, hard to make new friends with these people who looked like they really didn’t give a shit. It was tough.

Fast forward a year and here I am, in a much better place: quite a few good friends, a better job than the one I had before, and a sense of belonging that hasn’t quite reached the level in which I feel totally at home but that still makes me feel at ease with my surroundings. I still miss London but I think about it less and less often. In fact, Copenhagen has been growing on me lately, especially now that we have left the cold months behind and the sun is starting to grace our days up here. They are getting longer too, which means I can leave the office at 5 o’clock and still be able to make it to the nearest park and enjoy a couple of hours of sunshine, ogling at beautiful girls and enjoying the blissful atmosphere that is magically created in this city when the sun is out. It also means that I tend to wake up way too fucking early (like 5am early) because my wooden blinds are totally useless against the bright morning light but that’s a minor price to pay considering all the wonderful stuff you get in return.

What exactly is it that you get in return, I hear you ask?

Well, just picture this under blues sunny skies.

Wonderful, isn’t it? ;-)

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January 26

It took me by surprise last night, when I was on Skype with Ann: it’s been a year since I moved to Denmark. Strangely enough, it feels way longer than that…

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