Just as it was yesterday, rain has been a theme of the day, but when I ‘woke’ (for the third or fourth time) there was no pitter-patter of raindrops upon my tent. That said, dampness was still in the air and it seemed a pragmatic decision, once I’d showered, shaved and, err… well the other one, to stay in the tent to pack up my things. Once completed the rain was still not falling so I proceeded to put everything back on the bike (you’d be amazed how many things need putting back on once you’ve taken them all off; it’s not just four pannier bags) and then start taking down the now dry tent. At which point it started raining. It only takes a few minutes for a dry tent to become a sodden one and before you could say ‘chuffing hell’ I had a wet tent…
So, with my rather damp tent on the back, we set off up the road in the direction of Helsingor. If you take a few moments to look at the map (in the link at the top of the post) it was a very simple route that not only followed Danish route 9 but also the coast itself. It rained, on and off, but when it did it was the heavy stuff that you see in Hollywood movies, not the drizzle that you don’t. After having invested so much in waterproof gear, however, it is, I suppose, gratifying that it is being put to good use (just like commas in that sentence, no?). My mind and my eyes turned towards what I could see through the raindrops; the Danish Riviera. Lots of very nice houses, old, new, delapidated, pristine, bespoke, converted… And quite a few, of course, thatched ones.
The cycle was a short one; just 40 km so by shortly after midday I had reached my destination, Helsingør. I was immediately reminded of arriving in Scotland in summer 2014. Apart from the weather, it was the buildings, the harbour, the look of the people… They were all undeniably not just ‘northern’ but ‘very northern’. I made my way to the campsite, just a couple of kilometres from the centre of the town and checked in with the intention of erecting the damp tent and giving it the afternoon to dry out. Once allocated a pitch, it started raining again, heavily. Cabins? Mmm… There were a few of them on the site. I returned to the reception and upgraded. It cost me an extra £30 but after having camped for all of my previous nights in Denmark, I didn’t feel too guilty about abandoning my preferred method of accommodation.
So, here I am in my cabin, dry and not just looking back over a successful week in Denmark but what lays in store for the next ten days or so in Sweden. I celebrated with a meal of marinated herring on a roof tile (see picture below) and a trip to the ‘Hamlet’ castle of Kronborg Slot. See the next post (which I’ve already written… writing a blog can sometimes be like living in an episode of Doctor Who). Tomorrow morning I will catch a ferry to Helsingborg – just a short trip across the entrance channel to the Baltic Sea – to embark upon upon the penultimate country on this south to north crossing of Europe. It should be a smorgasbord of fun on two wheels as well as an opportunity to use the word ‘smorgasbord’ numerous times on this website. That’s two already. Smorgasbord. That’s three… [Shut up.]