For anyone who doesn’t yet know, hygge (pronounced HEW-gə or, as we say it, HOO-gə) is a Danish word used to acknowledge an experience, feeling or moment, whether together with people or alone, at home or out, normal or extraordinary as cozy, charming or special.
So, in classic hygge fashion, Julia and I sat down at Dilworth Tasting Room one almost-rainy-late- afternoon-Tuesday on a plush, mustard-yellow couch with glasses of Pinot Noir and Malbec, and we talked Copenhagen, people, experiences, and, well, hygge.
mts: Have you always loved to travel?
jfm: I really didn’t travel overseas until last summer, and that was kind of a spontaneous trip; a friend had asked me last minute if I wanted to go to Switzerland with her; I didn’t have any photo shoots scheduled, and I decided not to think too much about it, and just go. I learned then that it’s easy to do it if you stop telling yourself it’s hard. I got the travel bug after that trip.
mts: Where’ve you been overseas since that trip?
jfm: I didn’t plan to go to Europe twice in one year, but it was hard to say no; so, in the last year, after Switzerland and a little bit of Italy, I went to Barcelona and Portugal, and then Denmark and Scotland.
mts: Was Copenhagen what you thought it’d be?
jfm: It was kind of what I thought it would be because I knew so much about it going into it; I knew about the togetherness and the coziness, and I experienced both of those things immediately. I had a lot of fun observing people – and the beauty of people – there.
mts: Favorite things about Copenhagen?
jfm: It was fun going to restaurants and watching people interact with each other; it was like every conversation was the happiest conversation they each had ever had. You see this a lot more in Europe than here, and I saw it in Copenhagen, too, but there were no two friends walking around with their heads buried in their cell phones; they’re weren’t cell phones on the table at meals. When they’re in the moment with each other, they’re in it.
[Another] one of my favorite things were the markets. Copenhagen had this market called Paper Island; you cross a bridge on bike to get there. There’s a big, cool warehouse (it reminded me of Camp North End’s warehouse actually) and it was filled with different cultures of food. Also, they had interactive art; we took part in one where you write down your greatest wish and hang it on limbs of a tree.