Trees and port wine in Copenhagen コペンハーゲンで木とポートワイン

DSC_7871 (1)Two weekends ago my mother and I went for a weekend trip to Copenhagen. It was the first time actually, that I travelled alone with my mum. I have 3 siblings so usually more people come along on any trip, but this time it was the just the two of us. But we are very alike and share many interests so it ended up to be a really nice journey. Nature, old houses, good coffee, good food, good cake are things we both like. Speaking of which, I will need to try making rhubarb cheesecake this weekend. The one we had in Copenhagen at Café Kaffestuen in Vesterbro was delicious. And so was their coffee!

Anyhow. My mum and I took the train a bit north of Copenhagen to Klampenborg. Just walking around randomly along the shore we found this hollow oak. Several hundreds of years old it has served as both storage for peat and also as a home for some guy back in the days. I also want to live in a tree :)
とにかく、母親とコペンハーゲンより少し来たある郊外に電車で行った。適当に歩いててこの中ががらんどうのオークを見つけた。数百歳になる木、泥炭のストレージや人の家の機能があった。DSC_7864(1) (1) DSC_7867(1) That tree sure was  spectacular. And there was more lovely nature areas in Klampenborg, perfect for strolling around on a sunny May afternoon.

DSC_7868DSC_7873This house, we came upon in the middle of the forest. It was a restaurant, called The Red Cottage. Unluckily they weren’t open. But the neighboring restaurant The Yellow Cottage  was (no picture sadly) so we had lunch there with a great view of the Öresund strait with Sweden on the other side.
この家、森の中で見つけた。Red Cottageといレストランだった。残念ながらやっていなかった。でも、隣にYellow Cottageという同じ程度の可愛さのレストランもあった(写真撮り忘れた)。そこでランチ食べながら、スウェーデンとデンマークの間エーレスンド海峡の景色を楽しんだ。

DSC_7874(1) DSC_7879Another really nice thing about this journey was the port wine bar at Kingosgade street that we stumbled upon. I had forgotten how nice port wine is! And it’s another interest that my mother and I shared, so on our 3 day long stay we made sure to visit the bar twice :)
旅のもう一つ面白いポイントは突然見つけたポートワインバーだ。最近、ポートワインのうまさを忘れてしいた!明らかにそのポートワインも母と共通の趣味だから三日間の旅行、そのバーに2回行った:)DSC_7850 So if you go visit Copenhagen, you may also take a little trip to Klampenborg to enjoy the sea and the nature and you really ought to go and have port wine in Vesterbro. But one thing I do not recommend but all tourists do is to go look at the Little Mermaid statue. I mean, I don’t dislike the statue itself, but what about the background? I can’t really imagine a worse place for this piece. Well well. In any case, I will probably return to Copenhagen again this summer. It’s too nice and too close not to. Until then I’ll just continue hunting for an apartment and trying not to stress out too much…

Kimchi and Cherry Blossoms キムチと桜

The days are going by, spring has arrived and we are still looking for an apartment. Places similar to the ones we looked at a couple of months ago have gone up by 20% in price. We went to look at 6 apartments today, but none felt perfect. It’s frustrating really, knowing that the more we wait the more expensive it will get. But still, it doesn’t feel right to just buy something random because we feel we need to.
DSC_7778_1Meanwhile work and working out is taking up most of the time as usual only to be sometimes interrupted by the occasional cafe visit. In central Stockholm, Kungsträdgården, there is a park famous for its cherry blossom trees. They are really popular and this week they were at full bloom.
IMG_20150426_210653DSC_7798The cherry blossoms really give me mixed feelings. They remind me of the good times in Japan and the fact that I’m doing something different somewhere else right now. At least looking back at it now, times in Japan feels so much more fun than whatever I’m doing now. And of course, like the Japanese say, the fact that the cherry blossom bloom and wither so quickly reminds me of how short spring and good things in general are…
桜はね、複雑な心境を起こさせる。日本のいい時を思い出させ、今違うことをやっているのは明らかになりすぎ。今考えると日本の生活のは今より楽しかっただろうね。そしてもちろん、いつも桜が見る感情だけど、春や人生のいいことが桜ほど速く萎れるっていうか。。。DSC_7782_1So now to another topic. I started making kimchi – fermented cabbage. It’s a Korean food but very common in Japan which is why I’ve eaten it a lot back in the days. And since one of my strong personality traits include almost over doing whatever hobby I start, I’m making it too often and too much. It’s the perfect food project really, it only takes a week from you make it until it’s ready, it’s tasty, it’s healthy, the flavor changes over time depending on how “old” the kimchi is, and it’s sort of alive – like sourdough (another food hobby I occasionally get too deep into) full of friendly bacteria. I was really surprised the first time I made kimchi to notice that it smells like yoghurt. But it’s the same bacteria so it makes sense really :)
もう違う話題にしよう。最近キムチを作り始めた。日本でよく食べたけど、スウェーデンにはほとんどない。私の人格的な特徴の一つは趣味をスタートすれば必ずやりすぎることだから、キムチを超作りまくっている。面白さ的に料理のプロジェクトとして完璧な食べ物だよ、実は。作るからできるまで一週間しかかからないし、美味しいし、ヘルシーだし、熟成の程度次第味が変わるし、サワードウみたいに生きていてヘルシーなバクテリアがいっぱい入っているし。初めて作ったら驚いたのは香りはヨーグルトと近い。同じバクテリアだからだって:)DSC_7727_1You can eat the kimchi as it is, as a side dish or on top of rice or with wheat berries like this dish below I ate last Monday:
キムチをもちろんそのまま食べてもいいし、この間小麦ベリーとサラダと一緒に食べても美味しい。DSC_7772And there are loads of other ways to eat it, and one of my favorites is Kimchi fried rice. There are loads of recipes online, but basically you just stir fry the kimchi for a while with some veggies and boiled rice and any other tasty thing you can come up with. And kimchi goes so well with eggs! Here is Kimchi fried rice with shrimps.
他の食べ方もいっぱいある、もちろん。最近のお気に入りはキムチフライドライス。ネットでレシピがいっぱいあるけど、ただキムチを野菜とご飯と一緒に焼いて上に卵かけたらなんとかなる。これはエビキムチフライドライス:DSC_7721 And here is today’s dinner, Kimchi fried rice with asparagus:
そして今日の夜ごはん、アスパラキムチフライドライス:DSC_7824Yesterday we ate fried Salmon and together with it I made a kimchi coleslaw thingy where I mixed chopped kimchi with creme fraiche and some mayo – it was great! Well enough about kimchi. In a couple of weeks I’m probably overdoing some other kind of food… That’s it for this time. Who knows, maybe I own an apartment next time I write…

Houses 家

DSC_7252You know, looking for a place to live makes you kind of messed up. I’ve always been interested in houses, but the last months’ intense search for an apartment has made me hooked on buildings and houses of all kinds.  And it’s so annoying how houses like this above and the one above cost maybe a third of a decent 2 room apartment in sort of central Stockholm.


DSC_7245However if you want to buy a house in Stockholm though that’s pretty it will turn quite expensive. While on a walk with a friend the other week we came across this one, which I recognized as Björn Ulvaeus’ (one of the guys in ABBA) house. I don’t want to think about how much it costs…

でも、ストックホルムで家を買おうとしたら、超高くなる。この間友達と散歩したら下記の家を見た。アッバの一人男の家だって。値段知りたくない。DSC_7163The most likely scenario for my future living situation though is that we will have one apartment and one summer house. It’s no big deal finding a small nice summer house by a lake or so in Sweden, there are loads of them. And I can’t imagine not being able to go to the countryside once in a while and lacking a garden, for example.


DSC_7251 (1)But first things first. Getting an apartment, aye. Well, the prices are going up and up and it’s uncertain if the bubble will burst or not. Before to long one of these yellow things will cost millions as long as it’s located in a nice central spot in Stockholm. Maybe I can just bring it? Stressful indeed, is what this is.