'These Danes don't really know how to dance to this, do they?'
'No, but they are smiling and cheering...'
This past weekend, as each year on this final weekend of May, come rain or shine the Copenhagen Karnival happens at Faelledparken in Østerbro.
Now let's be straight about things - Copenhagen ain't, has never been, and will never be, Rio De Janeiro. Because Denmark just ain't Brazil. Maybe that's why they spell carnival with a 'K' in Copenhagen. But for a brief 48 hours, here in Copenhagen, a bunch of people try really hard to simulate something akin to the carnival atmosphere from some latin country. Which is no easy feat. So obviously the result, well okay, it doesn't quite compare, but given the latitude and longitude coordinates of Denmark, well, it's not such a bad attempt.
maybe to cold for shorts and t-shirts, but still fun to see for a short while...
I've been to quite a number of
carnival's Karnival's over the years in Copenhagen. They don't really change that much from year to year, but they are fun to wander around for a while. Because it's one of the rare moments when you will find vast numbers of people of diverse nationalities coming out and having fun. It creates an excellent spirit. These are people whom, frankly, you rarely see (at least in such numbers) on the streets of Copenhagen (which is really a shame). In fact, I am amazed each year during the Karnival to discover that Copenhagen actually has such a volume of diverse nationalities.
As for what actually happens at the Karnival - the entertainment - well, there's always a bunch of Latin American and African inspired dancing, drumming, singing and so forth performed by a bunch of people who, by in large, have no direct descendants from any of these areas of the world.
one, two, three, four, bang, bang, bang...come on white boys!!
There's also all the typical low-tech, mobile entertainment you would expect to find - nearly unwinnable games with cheap prizes that in themselves barely justify the cost of playing. Bumper cars, spinning rides and so forth. And lot's of simple and not terribly heathly, but rather tasty food. Especially if you happen to have had a big night of drinking the night previous...
'And would you like them with ice cream and sugar?'
'But of course!!'
And dancing. It's pretty much the only event in Copenhagen, and perhaps Denmark, where you will see families and kids just dancing for the sake of dancing around in public, rather uninhibited.
It's a lot of sights and sounds that one just doesn't come across during day to day life here in the city. Except for this one weekend each year. Which is the main reason why most years I normally try drop by for an hour or two when it is happening, just as I did this year.