Sunday, 28 September 2008

Visit from Nagaland (in Hamburg)

Nitoli and her mother in Hamburg

Nitoli’s mother and brother (as well as some extended family) decided to come for our wedding. Since it was their first time in Europe, we went down to Hamburg to welcome them and spend a few days there with them, untill it was time to go back up to Denmark.

Since everything was new to them (culture shocks work both ways, obviously) we kept a low pace with a lot of time for shopping. We also took a boat tour of Hamburg Harbour, which is the second biggest in Europe.

A few pictures from our days in Hamburg:


Container ship and cranes in Hamburg's modern industrial harbour

Houses in the now defunct old tax-free harbour Speicherstadt

The water of the new harbour city now being built beyond the Speicherstadt to house apartments and office rather than cranes and warehouses

Nitoli's mother on a big anchor

Bridge between old Hamburg and the free harbour at Speicherstadt

Nitoli surrounded by her mother and brother, Kinito, and members of their extended family on the flanks

A mime who managed to captivate Nitoli's family

The burned out tower of St. Nicolai Church, which was bombed in WWII

Two of the guys checking out an old fountain near the St. Nicolai

Sunday, 21 September 2008

Giants?

Big people? No, small houses

After Silkeborg we went down to Hamburg to take care of Nitoli's family arriving to Europe for the first time (more about that next time). On the way we stopped in the town of Fredericia for a football match, but we also has a small walk through town. Fredericia is a historical town, and we happened to stumble upon a model of the city as it looked in the 19th century.

Nitoli in Fredericia

The model town is quite large

Swans not observing traffic rules ("Ensrettet" means "one way only")

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

A Festival of Lights - Silkeborg Ildfestregatta

A few of the colours of Silkeborg Ildfestregatta

Every three or four years my beautiful home town of Silkeborg, Denmark, celebrates the so called "Ildfestregatta" centred around the town harbour. It's a festival which mixes Silkeborg's freshwater-maritime traditions with the celebration of light in different forms: Coloured lights spread around town, creek and lakes and Silkeborg playing host to the Danish championships in fireworks - it's all a bit reminiscient of the Hindu festival of lights: Diwali.

Even nature can provide some really cool light and colours. Sunset over Silkeborg Langsø ("Long Lake")

Throughout the regatta-week the town fills up with hundreds of thousands of people, who enjoy music shows, the thrill rides of the traveling tivoli or the nature in daytime, before the real party starts at night. The fleet of ships led by the oldest paddle steamer in the world, Hjejlen, will sail out on the surrounding lakes, enjoying the lights which have been hung all by the waterside. When they come back to the harbour after dark the scene is set for another fireworks factory to put up an enormous show to try to earn thye prestigeous title.

Some pictures from the party below, including a series from the fireworks competition in the end. I know it's hard to show fireworks in pictures, but I hope it gives a bit of an impression of the grandeur of these shows - they really are quite breathtaking at times:

Nitoli in front of the travelling tivoli.

A small concert - one of many, all over town

The fleet arriving in Silkeborg Harbour on the last day of the regatta

Decorated house, reflected in the lake

More lights by the water

The travelling tivoli seen from across the lake, with the full moon covered behind a few plants in the top right corner.

Girl watching the fireworks from the Silkeborg side.

More fireworks seen from Silkeborg side


A huge explosion seen from the other side of the lake looking towards Silkeborg. Notice how small the 5-6 storey city hall building is compared to the fireworks. Truly breathtaking.

The big finale. Wow!

Thursday, 4 September 2008

A great welcome back to Denmark

A small group of my friends and family in Svostrup Kro

As many of you probably already know, Nitoli and I, have now returned to India after a busy but fantastic trip home to Denmark to celebrate our (second) wedding with family and friends. This is the first of a series of posts showing different aspects of this trip.

Our arrival in Denmark started off on a great note when my brother had organised a surprise joined bachelor/bachelorette event for us. Since our friends are pretty spread out across the globe we had not planned for anything and were not expecting anything. But my brother had gotten in touch with a few of my really good friend and also the rest of my siblings + spouses were there.

Thankfully, it was not a wild or - as is often the tradition in Denmark - a humiliating program. We just went bowling before going for dinner to the old Svostrup Kro ("Kro" means something like "country inn") from which I will show a few pictures. This inn, which I visited for the first time, has been kept in the traditional heavily decorated Danish style of the first half of the 20th century, before Scandinavian minimalism took hold and became a global design trend. Personally, I like the old style better.

As it is custom we as future bride and groom were not allowed to pay for anything - good thing since we had enough expenses for the rest of our wedding celebrations :o)

The old cash register surrounded by nick-knacks

The old wine cellar (photo by my brother Morten Agersnap)

All of us in the corner of the main dining hall

Nitoli also found some other company

Svostrup kro from the courtyard at late dusk

Nitoli