Where are all my muscles?

May 28, 2018 Sofia Nordlander 0 Comments

Cycling in Denmark


Well, Southern Sweden is kind of flat except Hallandsåsen but that was doable even for a newbie biking with 53 extra kilos. Denmark on the other hand I expected to be totally flat but that was not true. It isn’t the Alps and I will most likely laugh at this a few months from now but the seriousness in my biking career is relatively new and I kind of struggle in the hillier areas without any major results. I’m waiting for my thighs to become giant, but might be too impatient. Anders tells me to fight harder or wait longer for the results. Guess he’s right. He has giant thighs already which I think is unfair.

We started our journey in Halmstad, Sweden two weeks ago and had time for a few stops along the way before taking the ferry to Denmark. First stop was Båstad, a well known summer city in Sweden, at least if you watch tennis and just a nearby town if you have a car or go by train. We prefer another option and spent significant more time by bike to find a shelter just outside. This is where we uncorked the small bottle of Champagne given to us at the farewell party a few days earlier, wrapped up in various kind of coolers in the morning and with a “Poff” in the dusk, filled glasses and an enormous amount of moskitos. We celebrated fast and enjoyed the rest of the evening in our tent. Slightly tipsy.

Second day we found an abandoned shelter along Skåneleden and set up camp there, just above Hovs Hallar, where we spent the next day hiking in sunshine and happiness. Again, just outside town if you have that car i referred to earlier. We continued slowly south but then, out of the blue, a text message came. “Your package is delivered”. I’m not a fan of the Swedish postal service and my delayed parcel, my long wanted kickstand for my bike, had been expected during a long time until I gave up and we left without it.

Hiking in Hovs Hallar


So, as we were still in Sweden and it was only one hour of train ride back to Halmstad which was were my parcel finally had found itself, I put myself in a seat and travelled back just to pick it up. I wanted it badly and the bonus was an unexpected chat with the deliverer, my "father-in-law" much earlier than expected. I mean, we had a tearful goodbye only a few days back. You never know when the next time to meet is, I keep on saying that.

Later that day, back with Anders in Helsingborg we took a twenty minute ferry to Denmark, without knowing how fast twenty minutes past. We had just put all our things in the socket for charging when they announced the arrival. Denmark, up and go. New land as bikers (except that teenager route I did once), pretty well-known otherwise as travellers.

Except those hills I was talking about, Denmark has been exactly what I imagined it to be with its sunshine and white and stunning beaches. That imaginary picture rarely exist cause Denmark is still in Northern Europe with it’s unpredictable weather forecasts and it's always a gamble if you chose to have a vacation here. But, we’ve had sunshine for two weeks. Until yesterday when a few raindrops hit us, enough to dig into our bicycle bags, totally confused and not with the slightest idea in which one you had put your rain jacket. Found it and used it for 5 minutes. That's ok, I don't necessarily want to use my rain jacket only because I found it. Today I'm glad I knew were it was though since rain started pouring down as soon as we entered the streets of Fredrikshavn.

So, I could give you a lot of details about “off the beaten track beaches” in Denmark where we have spent most of the time when we haven't been riding the bikes but all I need to say is that they are lovely and everywhere and if you are into skinny-dipping it seems to be as natural as with a swim suit. Denmark seems to live up to the, often referred but maybe false, reputation of Swedish liberated beach style. This is at least what we have experienced in the Northern Zealand (Själland) and in eastern Jutland (Jylland). Don't get naked on a beautiful beach just because I said it was alright though. It's not illegal but you shouldn't offend anyone.

Anders reading at the beach

The biking paths are usually great and well marked here but every now and then we need to share space with heavy traffic. Not as nice but at least, according to me, car drivers seem to be more tolerant to cyclists than in Sweden where I experience traffic more aggressive and sometimes even provocative.

Denmark doesn't have the Swedish “Everyman’s right” which, in Sweden, mean you can put up a tent wherever you want or need for a night unless you are told something else. Instead Denmark has shelters which you can find on Udinaturen.dk. Good to know if you aren’t confident to ask the landowner or just want to hide your tent and move away before anyone take offence.

Dinner time

Estruplund's church


We will have a few days more here, reorganise things before the ferry take off to Iceland, that is where I will need the muscles I’m still missing. We start with a huge, in my point of view, mountain first day. Anders just said, “Think about the ascent you made a few days ago, how surprised you were that it was so easy. It will be just like that but nine times in a row.”. Easy peasy. Anyhow, Iceland will be awesome!






Coffee time

Brekkie

Udbyhøj ferry 

Traditional Danish house


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You can’t beat the sand

May 22, 2018 Sofia Nordlander 0 Comments


Dinner before sunset, how lovely.

We had just finished a camp stove dinner with a Danish beach sunset and tried to get rid of some sausage grease from our titanium plates (and later from our hands) in the salty water without any success. With still dirty plates, defeated by the grease, and slowly moving towards the tent in the bushes behind the beach, a couple stopped us. “Hi there, we are your new neighbours!”, they said pointing at the bushes. “How do you get rid of the sand in the tent?”. Apparently it seemed to be a normal way to start a conversation and we must have looked as we had the answer… and yes we had. “Just get used to it, you can’t win the fight.”. 


Me and my Thorn Nomad hidden behind all my luggage.

We have recently started this life and must say we love it! Not every single minute of it of course, it is still a lot to learn even if we consider us to be at least quite experienced campers. Hardest things in life right now is how to find enough water, it should be easier when you've built up the courage to ask for it, and how to get your things together in the mornings before lunch time. Well, we’ll learn to do that to, eventually. At least we have time.

We are not moving fast but we are in no hurry either, Denmark is beautiful and the weather has been marvelous so far. Slightly chilly in the nights but daytime the sun is shining and shining, turning our skins happily brown being outdoor almost all the time. We are considering taking the ferry to Iceland in the nearby future but the weather forecast in Denmark says sun for as long as it shows, Iceland on the other hand is showing hard rain and 7°C. Not what we have ever asked for but the longing for a new adventure might win, how lovely Denmark with it’s sun may be. 

Anyway, it’s another sunny biking day tomorrow, at least according to the forecast. Maybe we get bored at this summer weather eventually and move on to colder destinations. Until then, let’s keep up the fight against the sand.

Northen Zealand in Denmark

Good morning sunshine!


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After work is freedom

April 08, 2018 Sofia Nordlander 4 Comments

A young aunt Lena enjoys life.

It’s time to skip mandatory early mornings, negative stress and far too little time for happy things. I’ve quit my job, sold my things and I look forward to a lot more adventurous future. No longboards this time, we choose bicycles. Longboard Lady on a bike!

It won’t be a future in luxury in the sense people often refer to the word, but never have I ever asked for that either. We'll have our own version of it. More demanding, more simple and always with huge gratitude for the opportunity to change life to whatever we wish for.

Anders has been talking about his upcoming bicycle tour around the world since the day we met and had already detailed plans made. Time flew and we had other gorgeous adventures together, fell deeply in love and shared both happiness and grief, weakness and strength and lots and lots of travels. My total match when it comes to obsessive yearning for freedom and also the only man I could ever consider to ask if he wants to join the sort of craziness I sometimes desire so madly, with always a “Yes!” in respond. And now, suddenly we own our future and "the right time" is here. We have saved and planned and dreamt for such a long time and today I'm free from the ordinary “work-kind-of-life”. Now I'm the one who say "Yes!" to craziness.

My Thorn Nomad waiting for a new life
We have bikes and dreams and a tent, the rest is unknown in a world full of beautiful uncertainness.

One person who inspired me to do this, I mean to go together with Anders plus bikes for as long as we want to, is my beloved aunt Lena. She died at the age of 53, 2015 in cancer. She had a beautiful soul, full of love and respect for everyone close to her and she always said yes to spontaneity in life. She fought so hard to live longer. I know that she would had been more than proud of me doing what I do right now and she will always follow me on my journey as a reminder of what's important in life. 

Follow us on a long bicycle tour around the world, without time limits and with plenty of joyful stops. I slowly start my trip from Borås in the middle of April towards Halmstad in the south of Sweden. The big trip together starts from there in May.


I will always keep my Instagram account updated, sometimes even my Facebook page. Follow/like them please! ;-)

Follow Anders as well, he's really good in writing! :)

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