Maundy Thursday or Skærtorsdag marks the beginning. Our vacation started with a race here in Næstved. It's the biggest race in the city all year and it's called Skærtorsdagsløb (løb meaning race). http://hgatm.dk/side/index.php/Skaertorsdagsloebet/View-category.html
It was a beautiful morning for a (mostly) trail run. I ran the 10.04k and SR ran the 5.14k. Judging from last year's times, I stood a much better chance of winning the 5.14k. But longer races are just more fun.
Perhaps stupidly, I ran the first 5k in 20 minutes (ahead of all the 5kers and just ahead of my biggest 10k competitor). Shortly thereafter, I started to burn out and my competitor passed me. I then slipped all over running up a steep mud hill and eventually dropped my ipod. But I ended up with a 17 second PR (41:58) and second place.
SR was disappointed with 4th place in the 5,14k, but still ran a great race, with a time of 17:42.
After the race, there was again a podium for the winners. My little 5 year old niece, Chewy, was so taken by the fact that I got to stand on number 2, that she found flowers for my hair and repeated "I love you Sealegs. I love you." in her adorable Danish accent.
Here is a picture of her with her dad (SR's brother).
I could go on and on about Chewy, but suffice it to say, she is absolutely wonderful. And she astounds me with her ability to switch between Danish and English at exactly the right time (and can translate words like telescope, etc.)... childrens' minds are amazing.
Hey and I got a 300 kr. (or $50 prize)!
After a lunch at our apartment in Næstved, we went up to the Danish summerland, where many Danish families have summerhouses. Our summerland is right on a bay of the North Atlantic called Kattegat. The views and beaches are gorgeous and peaceful.On Friday, we enjoyed a traditional Easter Lunch (Påskefrokost) with about 30 family memebers in the Danish spring sun. It was so nice to talk with two happy, working mothers who are able to balance a full-time job and motherhood. They were fascinated by the fact that many women in the US don't breastfeed. It seems it's a given here that virtually all mothers breastfeed for at least one year (and to be honest, I don't even know if it's possible to buy a breast pump here). When I say I would have had just 15 days paid maternity leave in the US, I have to repeat it at least once. "But then at least you would get unemployment, right?" Yeah, right. The US system seemingly doesn't believe in supporting mothers, children or the poor. It's simply more important that the rich don't pay high taxes. That's American feedom, afterall...
Here's SR's cousin (mom and biochemist) with the now-green-eyed Lorax.
Here are some pictures of us splitting firewood for the summerhouse
and crazy parents
God påske and Happy Easter!
Best song from the race: Disturbia by Rihanna