Mi casa es su casa

Last weekend two guys from Madrid stopped by our place for a couple of days. I didnt know them and they didnt know me but they found me on the website Hospitality Club (HC) where travellers can find free accommodation. Ive been a member of the site for two years but so far I hadnt used it myself and wasnt home when people wanted to stay at my place. This time it worked out – and it was a blast.

The cool thing about HC (and other sites like CouchSurfing) is that everybody gets something and it doesnt cost anything – social software at its best. When I travelled to America in 2000 I tried to use Servas – an off-line predecessor of HC started in 1949 – to find some people to stay with in US. The idea was great but in practicality too cumbersome for me. With HC its fairly easy and relatively safe to meet local people and get cheap accommodation.

Nacho and Alfredo are studying aerospace engineering and architecture and they had found some cheap flights to Malmö. So they had a few days to visit Copenhagen. They brought along some Mahou Negra cerveza (thanks!) and local red wine and then they cooked a traditional Spanish omlet. Here they are in action:

Spanish cooking

They stayed with us from Saturday till Monday so we went to a private party Saturday night and to Sunday Reggae at Rub A Dub (thanks for that idea, Alice).

Reggae Sunday

Nachos and Alfredo invited us to a party at their apartment the 16th so now we just need to find cheap tickets to Madrid

Copenhagen Ambiance

This post was written for the international people on the IAESTE Weekly mailing list to tell about Mikael Simpson and Trentemøllers concert at Ungdomshuset December 5th. I figured I might as well post it here so I could include pictures and videos.

As winter sneaks up on us and the sun becomes the friend we see too seldom and too short, the Danes get into a darker, melancholic state of mind for a couple of months until spring finally greets us again. Here is my suggestion of how to embrace yourself for the gloomy winter with some cool Danish music in the middle of Copenhagen history in the making.

Ungdomshuset – Home of the rebels
Ungdomshuset (transl. The Youth House) has been a vibrant institution in Copenhagen for 20-something years but it might be over within the next couple of weeks.
ungdomshuset
Photo by emo.ware

The history of Ungdomshuset goes back to when it was build by the labour movement in 1897 as a cultural house for the workers of the community. It has been the base of several demonstrations and other events organized by the labour movement in the first half of the 20th century. The place was more or less abandoned in the 1950ies until BZere (transl. squatters) moved in in early 1980.
In 2000 a Christian sect bought the house from the municipality with the use of a front company and since then there has been a legal struggle to evict the young people using the house. It might all end December 14th (or some day close to that) were the authorities will probably use force to get people evicted.

Read more at Wikipedia, about the house or about the trials (More extensive sources in Danish: 1 2 3 4 5)

So take this opportunity to get inside Ungdomshuset December 5th where a couple of the most hip Danish artists are showing their support for the house. See what Copenhagen is also like and meet some interesting people with Mohawks and piercings all over their face – and dont worry they wont eat you, most of them are vegetarians.

Mikael Simpson – The One and Lonely
Mikael Simpson
Photo by Stig Nygaard

Mikael Simpson is a Copenhagen-based artists that catches the restless night spirit of Copenhagen. He makes all his music in his apartment on Nørrebro and here is his latest video that shows you what goes on in his apartment:

He just won the P3 Guld award which is Danish National Radios finest award (backed with a 100,000 kr cheque).

Electric Wonderboy
Trentmøller is a Copenhagen musician/DJ with remixes for Pet Shop Boys, Moby and Röeyksopp to his name. Trentmøller recently released the laid back solo album The Last Resort that has been getting a lot of praise. Here is a performance from last weekend:

Hope to see you there – Mikael Simpson and Trentemøller