I’m back. From holiday that is. One week of glorious Denmark lies behind me and I wish it didn’t. I don’t still have sand in my shoes and unlike Jimmy my back is not still still red raw three days post extreme sun exposure – the poor boy, surrounded by Germans and Danes, forgot himself, his pinky English skin and his innate need for sun block.
(the best Denmark had to offer…beaches, baby Ella and British seals)
What I have brought back however, are some beautiful dishes and posts, from Tarm’s flea market, and an extra 3kg of cabin bag as well as body mass.
The flea market was brilliant; full of quirky old brass cooking utensils, useless oddly shaped glass vessels and faded, grubby-looking kids toys. Better still, the hipsters haven’t arrived in Denmark, let alone Tarm yet. Instead of paying well above today’s would-be equivalent retail price for some deliciously rusting, old battered kitchen tools, we actually managed to pick them up for just a few quid. Londoners, DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME. At least not at Brick Lane, Covent Garden or Portobello Market. If the pickpockets don’t get to you first, then the vintage-junk shop and stall holders will. At London’s ‘oh so cool’ second-hand markets you’re more than likely to be robbed in more than one way.
Anyway, not so in Tarm. Denmark seems to be a predominantly family-orientated and hipsters are way to cool for family fun.
Put under severe pressure from my darling twin Inga who was only too eager to leave a mere five minutes after having arrived at this paradisal shopping haven, urgency soon took over. Panicked scouring, rather than casually delving through the individual stalls’ gear I was able to scavenge the following:
A beautiful retro-style, flower-adorned pan, some brass Jamie Oliver-esque (but without the price tag!) plates to match my brass mugs, a funky parsley grater (which despite its funkiness is nothing short of being an absolute pain in the a**e to wash-up) a bucket and some Mikado Sticks – the latter are unlikely to ever be used but carry with them enough childhood reminiscence to easily justify the loss of 10 Krone (which comes to just above a pound I believe). Whilst I am satisfied with my overall haul, my nights have been plagued by visions of missed opportunities and rusty blue Gugelhupf cake tins (google it if you’re too ignorant to know what this great creation is). Big sister Anna managed to purchase one and I have ever since been left to rue my indecision.
That along with a tube of Danish mayo and an ambitiously crammed tupperware full of our last night’s BBQ left-overs explains how my cabin bag came to gain 3kg in 7days. But how did I?
Aufschnitt, Fruehstueck and Abendbrot are all things I am not able to practice successfully in the UK. No, Hovis Sliced, Ham, Cheddar and Branston do not work just as well. However, for the first time ever I’m beginning to think it’s a good thing.
It’s my grandparents’ 50th Wedding Anniversary this year and rather than throw one of those massive, formal – and let’s face it mostly rather boring – parties they decided to rent a house in Denmark and invite the closest family. That is, my mother and her brood and her sister and her brood. Including boyfriends and great grandchild there were 18 of us. On Saturday evening all parties slowly began to arrive in their child and provision-packed cars. Having flown in, Jimmy and I were luckily exempt from having to fork out half of our monthly wage on food and drink before the holiday had even begun. Denmark, with its endless space, rolling fields, wild roadside flowers and long, white, dune-framed beaches may be a magnificent place to spend a couple of days of carefree relaxation, but it’s certainly no place to pick up a supermarket bargain. Grocery prices are almost double those of England and triple those of Germany.
Neither able to resist the ‘free’ food my family had kindly imported nor the temptation of thickly spread butter on fluffy white rolls topped with Remoulade, cured cold meats and generously salted tomatoes, breakfast quickly became our first vice of the day. Lunch was spent picking at chocolate, Salzstangen and other people’s carefully prepared and planned meals, before dinner was nothing less than a 30 minute process of forking, cutting and shovelling. Forking, cutting and shovelling. Forking, cutting and shovelling. Tapas, BBQs, salted fish, ice creams, pancakes, potatoes, pastas, bread, bread, bread and bread.
Admittedly, it was great so long as it lasted and scales were nowhere to be seen, but I’m sure glad it’s over now.