Pride in Copenhagen

Pride Bus
Pride Bus

The National Gallery of Denmark is on the menu today and one of the first things I notice; waiting at the bus-stop is that all the buses are flying the Danish flag on one side and the rainbow flag on the other.  Public buildings are also sporting the gay flag – I can’t imagine that happening in London. The imposing gallery building looking all newly scrubbed, towers over me as I alight at the stop.  It’s only just opening time so I’m one of the first.  It’s free with a small charge for the lockers.  There’s quite a good collection of French impressionists and several good Van Gough paintings.

National Gallery
National Gallery

Then there’s a section on European art and another for Danish and Nordic Art.  It takes several hours to get through all this and then I discover a whole new wing of contemporary design

Modern wing
Modern wing

out the back and connected by a glass roof.  There’s a café in the basement looking out on to a park – where I have a coffee break – and a sculpture street above to be investigated. I discover more stuff made after 1900 including Danish, French and international work where Matisse and Picasso can be found so I extend my visit.

I’ve had an email about the Gay Pride march, but the details are confusing and I’m under the impression that it all starts at the Town Hall at 1pm. There’s nothing happening here except bands doing sound checks for later and an old bearded man who has

Sculpture Street
Sculpture Street

acquired a blond wig, shouting drunkenly, ‘No music! F..k you!’ in a very loud voice.  Eventually David and Luci arrive and we suspect that the parade is going to end here.  We walk towards where we think the parade is coming and settle down for a drink and food, but realise that the march is turning off further up the road.  Downing our refreshments, we make our way back to the rear of the Town Hall Square and manage to catch the start of the Parade and the Water Polo Boys who have been marching in the rain, in their Speedos.  We resist the urge to join the march, and enjoy the pageantry which is more varied, elaborate and sophisticated that London Pride (we like a bit of vulgarity in London).  The marchers squeeze into a narrow space leading to the Square and then disperse.  We hang about with the Water Polo guys for a while before going to the Gay Street, which has been blocked off from traffic.  Beer is on sale here for 40Kr but around the corner there’s a straight place doing it for 25Kr.  So every time we need another round we go back round the corner to the cute guy with a beard.  He’s pleased to see us and sort of OK with us flirting with him.

Conchita girl
Conchita girl

Studiestraede is full of plastic gazebos, sun-umbrellas and out-door seating.  It rains intermittently so we all have umbrellas at the ready.  Each bar has its own DJ with out-door speakers blasting out disco music.  We wander up and down with our cheap beers enjoying the sights, but tend to return to The Jailhouse (from last night) where the men are sexier and the music better.  We manage to find a place to sit under a gazebo and watch a crowd of people doing the most fantastic dancing in the rain.  Some girls wearing Conchita Wurst tee shirts briefly stop to shelter from the rain. Then one of the British gay football teams joins us and I try to explain the joke about ‘Wurst Fu?r Alle’.

Conchita back
Conchita back

We try the sausages (wurst) plain and with chillies – they are delicious and somehow the afternoon stretches into the evening and I don’t have any more room for beer.  The rain becomes torrential and people take shelter or melt away into the night.  Miraculously the buses are still running.

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