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Travelling to remote and not so remote places

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June 2014

Dentists in Copenhagen


During my trip to Sweden/Denmark I’ve developed a severe dental problem: before I left I had a root canal treatment at my usual dentist. She had already warned me that there was a infection present and I would have to expect some unpleasant symptoms in the first few days. Me, being a man with a body, that under normal circumstances functions well without giving any unpleasant symptoms, would have preferred to isolate myself from humanity during this period of expecting suffering (I suppose find a dark corner in my cave where the wild animals would not smell my apparent vulnerability) – but 70th birthday of my mother in law as a fixed milestone event did not permit such flexibility. The day after the root canal procedure and the flight to Copenhagen I had some, albeit manageable pain. The following day, however, my face turned into a half sided chipmunk and, despite generous application of Ibuprofen, a rather noticeable pain was prevalent. This went on for another day (Friday!) and when I sat down for dinner on Friday evening I felt that NOW would be the right time to have my tooth ripped out, stomp on it a few times and throw it into the sea. So, I called a Danish emergency number, who referred me to an emergency dental practice in Copenhagen (Tandlægevagten, Oslo Plads 14, 2100 Copenhagen Ø. Tel.: (+45) 1813) – and it turned out to be great: the dentist spoke perfect English, so communication was no problem, he showed sufficient signs of compassion so I felt taken care off and, most importantly, he described exactly what he was going to do so I felt under control. Excellent. He relieved the pressure, wrote me a prescription for antibiotics and bingo – I was a whole person again. He also recommended a slightly more drastic approach to pain management and suggested 800mg of Ibuprofen combined with 1000mg of Paracetamol. That was news to me (I checked whether liver transplants were on offer in Copenhagen, too), but, having been more than slightly desperate, I followed the advice and Bingo! – no pain.

So, while I was more than reluctant to try out a dentist in a country as remote and foreign as Denmark I was pleasantly surprised about the competent and friendly treatment I had received. Excellent. One thing, though: they only accept payment by Dankort (usually not available to travelling foreigners) or cash. So bring some cash.

Golf in Falsterbo – Flommens GK


This is a top golf destination: Näset, a Swedish peninsula close to Malmö, is home of three of Sweden’s top golf courses: Ljunghusen, an 18-hole heather course and a short 9-hole links – top golf and very friendly staff. Then Falsterbo, a stunning links course with holes 16, 17 and 18 at the Southern tip of the peninsula and incredibly snotty staff who mimic the behaviour of some (the locals tell me Stockholmian summer) members, where apparently purple haired ladies simply tee off without bothering to secure a tee-off time. Smashing. The course is beautiful, though. And eventually Flommen, founded by Falsterbo caddies almost 80 years ago: a gem of a course with links character and loads and loads of water. Easy to play if there is no wind, but that rarely is the case. On my round yesterday were occasions where we were pleased that the approach shot had found the green, just to see it roll over the green into the water. It is a beauty of a golf course:

Hole 8 - Tee: typical Swedish bath huts, where the locals store their beach stuff during summer, line the fairway of quite a few holes at Flommen. You cannot see this on the picture, but one aims at the Falsterbo lighthouse when teeing off. A dream.
Hole 8 – Tee: typical Swedish bath huts, where the locals store their beach stuff during summer, line the fairway of quite a few holes at Flommen. You cannot see this on the picture, but one aims at the Falsterbo lighthouse when teeing off. A dream.

 

On the way to – Skanör in Sweden


Another trip with my family, this time to Skanör, Skåne, Sweden. Hometown of my wife, pleasant beach village in the Baltic, dream golf location with three of Sweden’s best golf courses within a few kilometers/a couple of miles.
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However, before arriving the gods have set travelling. In this case a plane journey with our home airline Lufthansa. Not the worst of all carriers, certainly when I look at their safety record and rating. Still a good choice when you look at the drinks being served. But bugger me, the shite they try to pass as food is encroyable: even the flight attendant showed signs of surprise when a passengers wanted one of those sad excuses of a sandwich. I’d say: leave it. Keep serving free drinks and just forget about the rest. Enough rambling: I am looking forward to a few days with the family, a round of golf and the 70th birthday of my mother in law. Party! On the way into Kastrup, Copenhagen’s prime shopping center doubling as airport, we had a great view of the Öresund bridge, which connects Denmark and Sweden:
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Lido di Jesolo – Family break. Hopefully.


Having arrived back in Munich from Kazakhstan the whole family got into the car to enjoy the Pentecost school holidays at the Adriatic Sea in Lido di Jesolo, Italy. Quite an experience to board a plane at 3.50am (the true red eye clipper) and, only 20 hours later, sit in a Pizzeria in Northern Italy led by an Indian family who serve quite good pizzas but rather lousy currys – as it turned out. So, if you ever happen to pass Mori on the way from Rivereto to Lake Garda: have a pizza at the local pizzeria Terra Nera (which claims to serve Italian and Indian cuisine), but don’t go for a curry. The Chicken Tikka Masala was god awful.

The journey from Munich to Jesolo. Can be done in 5 hours, but on the first day of school holidays it takes longer. Much longer.
The journey from Munich to Jesolo. Can be done in 5 hours, but on the first day of school holidays it takes longer. Much longer.

The journey was horrible: it turned out that we were not the only family who had the idea to spend the first week of the Pentecost school holiday at the sea in Italy, so it was slow going. Eventually, though, we arrived. Arrived at a very nice flat in a new development done by Richard Meier, some NYC based architect, excellent! That’s how the old man introduces the project – so check this out.

The next day we hung around and relaxed at the sea, the pool, a pleasant beach restaurant and enjoyed ourselves thoroughly until we found this:

What the f*%$! Whoever produces, sells or buys that sort of crap should have his head examined.
What the f*%$! Whoever produces, sells or buys that sort of crap should have his head examined. Leave out the association of Che with these Faschist mass murderers.

This is so sick. Italy has its fair share of clowns, Beppo Grillo and Berlusconi leading the pack by far, but I fail to see any fun in that. Caribinieri – shut this down!

 

Kazakhstan – Here we go again!


On the road again: this time, unfortunately, a very short work trip only! From a travelling perspective probably the worst scenario: hard work from Monday to Friday and then back home in the true red-eye-clipper on Saturday morning at 3.50! So hopefully I’ll still find some new place food and drinks wise – stay tuned!

First hop on the way to Almaty: Munich - Frankfurt.
First hop on the way to Almaty: Munich – Frankfurt.

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