Trip Start Jan 08, 2005
135Trip End Ongoing
Whilst waiting in Budapest airport for our flight to Copenhagen we overheard someone talking about some painted monasteries in Romania (that we wanted to vist), so we turned to ask some questions and were faced with a japanese looking man foaming at the mouth and getting really excited. My immediate thought was, Rabid! Rabid, Run for your life!!!! But we wanted to find out a bit more so we braved the spray and I resisted the temptation to offer him a tissue. He claimed to be japanese/english - born in Japan to japanese parents but living in England - and we did get some information from him, but the foaming proved too much for us. I was way too distracted to listen for much more than a couple of minutes and had to run away before I brought my breakfast up in his face!
We jumped off the plane in Copenhagen, excited to be visiting again. This quickly changed when we saw the weather. It was grey and freezing! Only 19. It had been 33 in Budapest! There goes the tan. We followed Tadek's instructions - train followed by ferry. We looked around the ferry and noticed that the Scandies were drinking gin in a can. I had to try some!! David bought some for me and I was hooked! Gin was my new best friend. Goodbye Sangria! I staggered off the ferry into an awaiting bus. Luckily it was going to Viken. We got off the bus and the heavens opened. Bugger! We hadn't had rain since Korcula! We managed to find the accommodation Tadek had booked for us, have a wander and dinner. We tracked Tadek down and arranged to meet up the next day.
We found the church - it wasn't hard, it was the only one in the village. Tadek was no where to been seen so we ducked inside for a bit of a look. It was a really sweet little Lutheran Chapel with a blue wooden ceiling and ships hanging down. Tadek and Karin turned up, looking slightly anxious, and appointed David Tour Leader for the day. Our mission was to take the small group to the Carlsberg Brewery in Copenhagen by 12. He said he would meet us there in about 3 hours. He had arranged a tour and we were meeting some more of his mates. Off we went with Tadek's dad, Fran his sister-in-law, Judy and Olla, Tadek's sister. It was already 10.30 and would be a big task to make it by 12 so we decided to take the 'Fast Train'. Fast my foot!!!!! It bloody broke down and we had to change trains so it took hours!!! We finally made it to the train station in Copenhagen at about 2.30 but we still had to get to the brewery. As it had taken so long we thought Tadek would be somewhere close by, and wouldn't you know it, we bumped into him walking down to the platform. We jumped on the next train but it was the wrong one. Fran and I got trapped and off we went, somewhere! I knew what David would be thinking and I knew what Tadek would be saying. We got back to the main train station and found Tadek had won. They had left us! Bloody Tadek! We found the correct train and found David waiting for us at the other end. It would be close - the brewery was closing soon. We raced round and struck a deal with the guard. We only had 20 minutes to do an hour length tour AND get the beers in!! Tadek's Dad was gasping so we left the others and went straight to the bar. His first beer didn't even touch the sides!! We met up with the others and had now grown to 12. We went over to the harbour area where the beers are the most expensive. Tadek - using his local knowledge - sniffed out a bottle shop and we were drinking cheaply, sitting in the sun on the water's edge. 7 or 12 beers later we needed a smorgasboard. We found on and started shovelling. Funnily enough, no one sat near us! Somehow we made it back to Helsingborg but there were no buses so we had to barter our way into a cheap taxi ride back to Viken and our bed.
We were woken by Tadek shouting for David to get moving - he stumbled out only to find it was the other David who would be playing best man and was staying in the next room. We laughed when we heard that Tadek had paid double for his cab ride last night! We eventually made our way over to Helsingor Castle on the Denmark side. It's a great place. WE did a tour of the castle where the guide told us a certain William Shakespear (Billy Wobblestick to his mates) had visited and learnt of the history of the castle. Ten years later he released his famous play - Hamlet. Apparently the Danes believe the story tooke place around the year 600. A thousand years later William Shakespear heard about the tale and changed it to his own style and Hamlet was born! We walked round the old town and looked at a couple of old churches then jumped on a ferry on the way back to Helsingborg on the Swedish side. Whilst on the ferry we bought up on gin in a can and a tetra pack of vino tinto to have after dinner. We visited what was left of the castle in Helsingborg. We climbed to the top of the Keep and had fantastic views of the coastline and of Helsingor Castle over in Denmark. We wandered round and found a thai restaurant. After dinner we attempted to get back to Viken for a quiet night in with our gin and wine but our plans were thwarted when we were spotted by some of Tadek's mates and were told we must have one beer with them. 5 or 6 later we ran away. We had to get the last bus back. When we arrived in Viken we found Tadek's family, minus Tadek, in the local bar of our hotel, so we cracked a few gins for the road.
I woke up freaking! I didn't have a thing to wear for the wedding!!! I dragged David into Helsingborg to search for something, anything! There was nothing really, so I bought a top and we went back. We got ready quickly as our hotel was the meeting point and everyone was turned up for pre-wedding drinks. Soon it was time to head to the church. We took our places with the priest's back to us. When Karin and Tadek walked in and town the aisle, she turned to face us all. Both bride and groom were looking radiantly happy! It was a wonderful service, part swedish and part english. The vows for Karin were in Swedish and the vows for Tadek in English. Hymns were in Swedish so we followed as best we could with the little hymn book. There were two solo singers, both friends of Karin's, which were really lovely. After the service we followed them out for the photos and everyone called for the couple to kiss for the camera! So Tadek duly stuck his tongue down Karin's throat!! The reception was in the village hall. The champagne was flowing so I was happy. David being the Aussie bloke he is huddled round the beers with all the other Aussie guys. The bbq was fired up and the salads were ready. There was meat for the meat eaters, vegies for the vegies and plenty of alcohol for all us alcoholics!! The speeches were fabulous - we all learnt a little more about Tadek and Karin. Tadek was the oldest midget in his home town rugby team - his Dad did mention he was the runt of the litter! Karin new how to plan a party with a deck of cards. We're not sure how, but we think strip poker may have been involved. Comedy over, we cleared the floor for the entertainment. Karin and Sarah jumped up on stage and sang Waltzing Matilda to introduce a bit of aussie culture to the swedes. Then Tadek pulled out the big guns with a surprise for Karin. It was the African dancing/drumming band she had learnt to play with in Africa with her sister! She ran up on stage to join in with them. Everybody was up and dancing, but there was more. After the Africans was a pommie geezer by the name of Craig, who went solo, but within 5 minutes Fran the mauri was providing backup vocals, then performed a traditional mauri song herself. The dance floor was heaving but the highlight was when David took Tadek's mum on the for a bit of a groove!! I took up the swedish tradition of doing shots with the boys and realising I needed to introduce a bit of swedish culture to an aussie, I rounded upon a Queenslander by the name of Tony, and poured shots down his throat! He was screaming no!, but I wouldn't take no for an answer. Eventually David got his way and dragged me back to the hotel. We had to be up in 3 hours for our flight back to Budapest.
Two and half hours sleep later I was up, showered and packed. I felt great, Sarah looked shit - remarkable as she hadn't been drinking! David did tell her that eight joints probably wasn't a good idea! As we arrived at the airport my hangover set in. I needed McDonalds fast but the airport was packed and we were stuck in the check-ion queue for tow hours. The security check was a nightmare - they decided to take my bag apart. I was flagging and needed recovery sustenance but the only thing we found was Frank's Dogs. It was disguisting. It was going to be a long flight back to Budapest..........