Charming and peaceful Copenhagen
15 September 2012
I visited Copenhagen earlier this year and enjoyed the trip. In many ways, Copenhagen is similar to the photo of a tranquil beach.
Firstly, the picturesque setting at Nyhavn, with houses resplendent in a myriad of colours, together with the Danes enjoying themselves at restaurants and dining al fresco, gave me a sense of tranquility and made me reflect on the topic of living life to the fullest. It is akin to people resting under umbrellas at the beach. It is no wonder that the Danes are consistently ranked among the top in happiness and quality of life surveys. On the other hand, due to the stressful lifestyles Singaporeans lead, we often fail to find the time for enjoyment and relaxation. Many of us complain of the lack of satisfaction in our lives. This is where we can learn from countries like Denmark- to improve on our work-life policies.
Secondly, the small things that I encountered like the cool winds, the hospitality of the people, the gracious, polite and courteous people who will not hesitate to hold the doors for you, the chiming of the church bells, and the beautiful cobblestoned paths and alleys all make this trip memorable. From this, I learn that we should see the beauty in life. If we look at things, no matter how small or insignificant they may be, with a sense of appreciation, we will begin to find life wonderful. Similarly, resting at the beach while enjoying the fine weather, blue skies, undulating waves and beautiful sand is something that we should appreciate. Singaporeans need to have a greater connection with nature and the environment and to develop appreciative attitudes towards the things we see daily.
Lastly, just like how clean the beach is with pure and white sand, Copenhagen is aiming to be the world’s eco-capital, having hosted the United Nations Conference on Climate Change in 2010. Having a tax on plastic bottles is just one of the ways of showing how the Danes are encouraged to be responsible towards the environment. A significant proportion of their population cycle to work and tourists can also rent bikes in summer for a nominal refundable deposit only. This further highlights Copenhagen’s eco-friendliness. The harnessing of alternative sources of energy like wind to generate electricity is also another testament to Copenhagen's efforts towards environmental sustainability. Singapore can look to Copenhagen as a model city in the environmental aspect.
All in all, the trip was a very memorable one which left me with many post-trip reflections. The charming and peaceful city of Copenhagen is one that I will surely visit again.