You know you're in Denmark when… (Baby comes too!)

You know you’re in Denmark when… 

Okay, so y’all know that Danish babies sleep outside in their prams or barnevogne, “child wagons”, as they’re called here.  I told you before that a French friend of mine nearly fainted when she found out.  “It’s barbaric!”  My Mum actually did the same with me in Scotland in the summer.  But here in Denmark they do it all year round.  In the deep mid-winter.  When it’s raining.  Snowing.  You name the inclement weather – we have it – Danish babies sleep outside in it.  Just remember to dress Baby Viking accordingly.  Keeping in mind the Danish motto: There’s no such thing as bad weather.  Only the wrong clothing!  Though selvfølgelig the Danish health authorities don’t recommend that Baby Viking sleeps outside when ill.  Or if the outside temperature drops below minus 10c/14f  😉

Above you can see my DS14 (dear son, 14) when he was about a year old, together with a friend from creche.  When our DKs (dear kids) were small, they slept in a pram which I parked in our garden.  People who live in flats often have an old, extra pram permanently parked on their balcony, so the baby can get their daily nap. And at vuggestue (creche) they’ll often have specially built, large wooden cribs for the kids.  The cribs are parked in a shed when the weather is particulary nasty.  Our two kids were sent off every day with their favourite small duvet/comforter and pillow.  Hyggeligt!  And sleeping outside usually means that they take a l-o-v-e-l-y,   l-o-n-g,  h-e-a-l-t-h-y  nap!

But, as usual, I digress…  Now, just because you have a baby doesn’t mean that you can’t get around Copenhagen.  On the contrary.  Baby always comes too!  The buses have space for a couple of prams.  And prams here can be  r-e-a-l-l-y  b-i-g.  You get on via the middle doors of the bus.  And ring the “pram” bell when you get off – so that the driver knows to allow you extra time when disembarking your tank…

The Metro and S-tog (Subway) trains have specially assigned areas for parking prams and bikes. 

 You’ll find those carriages at the front and back ends of the train.

Want to browse the shops?  No problem!  Baby comes too!  Get right in there!  Though it can get quite cramped sometimes when there are two or three prams vying for place…  [It can also lead to ‘road wars’ on the pavements when you are trying to manoeuvre past those giant prams.]

Baby is in the middle of a nap, or prams aren’t allowed in a particular store?  Just point the pram towards the window of the shop and keep an eye out.  I had a hard time with this one in the beginning.  Funnily enough, I always took my *valuables* out of the pram.  ‘Cos I was more concerned about someone stealing my shopping than my baby… 😛

Where are the Mum and Dad of these Viking Twin Babies?  Inside the café, on the other side of the window.

Yep, those crazy Danes have it all sewn up.  Or should that be snuggly tucked in?  So you fancy living in Denmark?  Babies no obstacle!

Diane 🙂

10 thoughts on “You know you're in Denmark when… (Baby comes too!)”

  1. i just love your way of describing the little details of danishness.
    very inspiring.
    your articles are used by me, to promote great ideas.
    I love the photo of the bike in the subway, it is forbidden in so many cities. I personally love the combination of bicycle and public transport.
    outside naps are souper not only as kid by the way.

  2. Lovely article, it will take some getting used to the pram culture in Denmark once we have moved there.

    I am still not sure if I will ever be comfortable leaving our daughter outside…

  3. I love your stories about the "crazy Danes". I used to put my boys out to sleep in their prams here in Scotland but couldn't believe my eyes when my daughter in law put my baby granddaughter out on the balcony to sleep. It was winter and there was icicles hanging from the balcony but you are so right about the Danish clothes and she had a papoose type wrap round her and she was snug as a bug in a rug. Love your photos and you bring me many happy memories. I too love Denmark and the way of life.

  4. I lived in DK for ten years (1960 to November 1969)and it was my Danish born husband that wanted to go back home to Canada. We lived in Vejle on the mainland and then Copenhagen and Kastrup, worked at jobs of course but I've really never been a tourist. I was thankfully, fluent in Danish with an accent after a year and a half. Then we moved to Copenhagen and I couldn't understand their accents – it took a little time for my ear to become used to the changes. I Visited 1985 staying with friends in Dragor and 1992 came back on business so it was a hotel. Coming back this August with a Scottish cousin and I cannot tell you how much I am looking forward to it…a hot dog or just sausages from one of the wagon's on the streets is my first treat, followed by a walk and actually running a few errands before the time runs away with other things. It is a wonderful country, loved the people, made good friends. A little story. We stood outside and heard the then Prime Minister call out from a balcony three times: "The King is dead, long live the Queen" and a very sad, considerably younger Queen Margrethe II clad in black waved at all of us standing by the bridge. I was in tears thinking how awful her father has died and she has to come out in public so soon. I called my husband and said we should hurry for the bus, grabbed his hand and kept walking and crying a little, then I heard my name being called – in Erik's voice! I had simply taken hold of another man's hand thinking Erik was next to me and this poor fellow was being pulled along the sidewalk not sure what he should do. It was really very funny at the time. Two years later in Canada we ended our marriage in as peaceful a way as possible and carried on with our lives. I didn't marry again until 2004 and my dear husband died of pancreatic cancer Sept. 2012 it is a terrible loss and I even considered moving back to Denmark but I also knew that there are times when one cannot go back 'home' again. Jackie

  5. Lovely story, Jackie 🙂 Enjoy your hot dog when you get here…always a treat!

  6. Yes, it was tough leaving my kids outside in their prams. And tough – now that they are 'big' – letting them cycle to and from school on their own/being anywhere on their own. The joys of being a parent! 😉

  7. Hi Daniel – you are right about the naps…I power nap every day! 🙂

  8. […] Got home, unpacked her shopping and suddenly had a nagging thought that, hmm, she had forgotten something…  What was it?  Yep, you guessed.  She had left my DDH in his pram outside a shop! Of course, she went straight back for him.  He was still there, sound asleep, no harm done.  This is Denmark after all!  [You know you're in Denmark when…Baby comes too!] […]

  9. […] panic if you see a baby sleeping outside in his/her pram. In Denmark, that’s normal. Whether it’s raining or snowing, the babies in Denmark can sleep […]

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