In August 2018, Trish Regan, who hosts The Intelligence Report with Trish Regan on Fox Enterprise Community, created fairly a stir when she disparaged Venezuela and Denmark in a searing commentary about socialism. Within the US, a rising socialist motion, spearheaded by politicians corresponding to Impartial Bernie Sanders and Democrat Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, factors to Denmark as a possible mannequin for the US financial system. However Regan vehemently disagreed.
“There’s one thing rotten in Denmark,” she mentioned.
Regan argued that the nation’s taxes are too excessive. Worse but, simply Three of their 98 municipalities had greater than half of the residents employed in 2013. She additionally ranted that “no person graduates from college” in Denmark as a result of they’re paid to go to academic establishments. You may see her commentary right here.
Regardless of how you’re feeling about socialism, we will admit that all of us have preconceived notions of locations the place we don’t dwell, particularly once we plan to journey to these areas. People are actually paying extra consideration to Denmark and what to anticipate there after Regan’s dismissal of socialism in Denmark on tv.
We thought it is likely to be fascinating to speak in regards to the realities of life in Denmark and never simply theories of presidency. Right here’s what I personally didn’t count on once I traveled to the nation.
10 Bicycle Construction And The place You Can Take Your Bike
Many individuals perceive that Danes typically use bikes to get round. This heavy reliance on bicycles sparks many variations between the methods during which People and Danes use them.
Danish individuals wish to experience excessive on their bikes, and the bicycle construction is usually very skinny. My bike again house is a thick, mint inexperienced, average-size bicycle that an individual can experience leisurely and plant her butt on simply. Once I tried to buy an analogous bicycle in Denmark, I used to be instructed that I used to be not allowed to purchase it as a result of the bike was so quick that it was child-size. I used to be instructed that it will harm my knees. The seat was 1 centimeter (0.Four in) under my hip!
Moreover, whenever you dwell in America and need to journey to a metropolis however you reside too far into the suburbs to carry your bike with you, you need to discover a place to squeeze your bike and your self on a practice or bus. Or you find yourself simply abandoning your bike at residence and settling for strolling.
Nonetheless, the S-tog (S-train) system in Denmark has designated vehicles the place you possibly can carry your bike in addition to areas to park the bike in the course of your practice experience. There are marked locations the place you carry the bike out and in the door in order that nobody struggles with transporting these autos in several instructions.
You must pay an additional charge to carry your bike on the Metro, however there’s house in your bicycle if you buy that move.
Lastly, even in suburban or rural areas of Denmark, bike paths are carved out for cyclists to get from place to put. I’ve been instructed by some Danes that there are teams of individuals in Denmark who need to do away with using vehicles within the nation altogether.
9 Bicycling Guidelines And Laws
Within the US, we’re theoretically supposed to make use of hand alerts to tell pedestrians and drivers of our instructions. Nonetheless, People hardly ever use them. We’re additionally purported to put on helmets and chorus from texting whereas using. Nonetheless, little greater than unfavourable verbal reactions ensue if People don’t comply with these expectations.
If somebody is discovered texting whereas using or failing to make use of correct hand alerts in Denmark, that individual will be fined 100–700 Danish kroner. Danes additionally experience their bikes it doesn’t matter what time it’s, so it’s anticipated that you’ll have bike lights. If you don’t, individuals will panic about your security and that of others throughout the nighttime.
To permit for the transportation of kids, there are youngster seats that connect to the again of a motorbike and bicycles which have wagons within the entrance. Whereas these are additionally provided in America, they’re used rather more typically in Denmark.
8 Being pregnant
Many pregnant girls within the US know in regards to the surgeon basic’s long-standing warning: You shouldn’t drink while you’re pregnant if you don’t want to inflict beginning defects in your youngster.
Nonetheless, in Denmark, research have discovered that it’s okay to drink an ordinary serving of alcohol per day when you find yourself pregnant. In line with social norms, not solely is it okay, it’s anticipated.
7 Little one Care
When you depart your stroller together with your youngster inside even a number of yards away from you in America, it’s anticipated that you’ll have a good variety of individuals verbally armed and able to chastise and scorn you as a dad or mum or caregiver.
I’ve been a responsible social gathering at one level, though I didn’t say something on to the mom (which can be simply as unhealthy). Nonetheless, in Denmark, it’s regular to depart your youngster in his stroller one grocery aisle over or on the fringe of a public room.
6 Water And Vitality Conservation
Whether or not for tax functions or within the spirit of ecological concern, Danes will be fairly acutely aware of the methods and quantities they use their water and vitality sources. Thirty-minute showers would in all probability not fly. Though laundry dryers will be in households, drying racks are most popular besides in a laundry emergency. Additionally it is anticipated that you simply flip off lights whenever you depart a room until you propose to return to that room very quickly.
Like every metropolis, it’s laborious for individuals in Copenhagen to maintain their pets outdoors their flats aside from strolling them within the metropolis. Nonetheless, for those who step outdoors Copenhagen, individuals will let their pets run free.
I’ve seen cats roaming the neighborhoods. At first, I felt unhealthy for the little strays. Then I discovered that they weren’t strays, simply cats that have been set free to be free for the day. Their house owners knew they’d return for meals and high quality time with the household.
Relying on the person individual, Danes could also be extra lax on leashes for his or her canines throughout walks as properly. Nonetheless, that’s not the case too typically.
Hole years are widespread for college students who’re at or close to school age in Denmark. These college students are usually not stigmatized or ashamed of their alternative. Generally, it’s pure for youths to take a 12 months off between highschool and school in Denmark.
I don’t know why, however individuals don’t all the time think about Denmark or Copenhagen after they consider technologically superior international locations or cities, respectively. In America, we don’t hear a lot about corporations like Cisco anymore, however this agency is on the reducing fringe of collaborative enterprise know-how.
Cisco has partnered with Copenhagen to construct groundbreaking digital infrastructures. There’s additionally Khora, a digital actuality lab within the meatpacking district of Copenhagen, the place individuals can strive completely different digital actuality methods and video games for a low value.
Copenhagen hosts a yearly Techfestival (motto: the place people and know-how meet) and boasts the placement of many different tech startups and well-established tech corporations.
In case you are invited to a dinner social gathering in Denmark, you’d higher put aside the entire night time, beginning at round 5:00 PM. It isn’t usually inspired to leap from social gathering to social gathering when you have been invited to multiple on the identical day. You eat dinner, drink, have dessert, and speak for almost six hours.
Usually, the host has a seating plan and you shouldn’t arrive late or early. When you arrive late, it’s impolite. When you arrive early, it’s worrisome to the host, who will not be absolutely ready but. It’s not essentially about partying however extra about having time collectively and catching up.
1 Going Out
Okay, so Danes are much more enjoyable and adventurous than People. At the least this American. Folks don’t begin hitting the bars till 11:00 PM, and typically, they received’t begin leaving till 3:00–5:00 the subsequent morning. When Danes need to social gathering, they social gathering laborious.
+ Notion Of Security
Within the US, girls are sometimes instructed to both exit in giant teams or make certain they’ve a person round them in the event that they exit after darkish. Nonetheless, individuals in Denmark, together with girls, don’t appear to be afraid to exit on their very own.
I’m not about to say that Denmark is a utopia as a result of no place is. I’ve biked residence at 1:00 AM right here, taken trains at midnight, and felt fully protected. Again residence, if I’m ready outdoors the catering corridor the place I work in my city and I hear a sound behind me—even at 9:00 PM—it will be sufficient to make me curl up right into a ball and film the worst doable state of affairs.
I’ve talked about this to different younger girls who’re finding out overseas with me. They’ve had no issues going residence with Danish males. One even mentioned that any time she felt harassed or in peril in Denmark, it was a foreigner, not a Dane, who made her really feel threatened.
++ Danes Are Blunt, And That Is Okay
Danes will let you know their trustworthy opinions—whether or not it’s believing that sure actions or customs are foolish or telling you that you simply’re mistaken about one thing and precisely why or correcting a social conduct that they imagine is impolite.
Or possibly they simply giggle at you whenever you mispronounce a avenue title. The Danes perceive that it’s okay to be up-front and trustworthy and there’s a means you are able to do that with out being straight-up imply. In truth, most occasions, you get giggle out of the interplay.
+++ Perform In Style
Keep in mind in 2008 when Selena Gomez and Demi Lovato wore high-top sneakers with their attire? We thought it seemed cute for a number of years after which realized that it was simply odd.
Danes don’t care. In truth, I’ve seen professors and girls on my commute who put on the cutest attire or outfits with essentially the most beat-up sneakers both as a result of they must stroll lengthy distances or as a result of they must experience their bikes.
It’s really made me reframe the concept of cute outfits with athletic sneakers to be wholly cute outfits. Danes additionally wish to be heat. I’ve heard some Danish individuals inform me that it’s virtually like People don’t care in regards to the climate—they’ll put on what they suppose is handsome in any kind of climate and danger their consolation.
Nonetheless, Danes will put on sweaters and parkas and scarves and make them look cute after they suppose it’s going to be chilly. I’ve seen that even towards the tip of summer season. Nonetheless, different American ladies and I are sporting skirts and freezing our legs off right here once we exit. We dream of find out how to put on denims and leather-based jackets to be heat and cute just like the Danish ladies.
I’ve continued to study that adjustments or variations within the ways in which numerous individuals dwell are usually not unhealthy. More often than not, our “consolation zone” is absolutely extra of a barrier to how we might be experiencing life than an precise consolation.
For me whereas residing in Denmark, that lesson actually applies. Danes dwell otherwise than what I’m used to, however I’m not upset about it in any respect. In truth, I discover myself always smitten by this new way of life.
Maher is in her fourth and final 12 months of undergraduate research at American College in Washington, DC. She research journalism and well being promotion and is presently finding out in Scandinavia to know herself and the world round her extra. Maher’s dream is to be an investigative journalist or to work for NPR. Actually, what journalism pupil doesn’t have that dream, although?