THE BRIGHTER SIDE OF LIVING IN DENMARK

 

We are just girls trying to have fun. Today we are celebrating one of our friend’s birthday at Dalle Valle. Minimal planning has gone into it. The fact that everyone takes their own check after dinner ensures a smooth evening. After all, you pay your own bills in Denmark. Really, even when you go on a date. We are having a great connection. The unity spirit of the Kenyan people is clear. We are all from different ethnic groups but we are one here. Immigrants. Kenyans.Black. Minorities. Most important happy.

Shortly after, we start discussing about our lives here. Great minds think alike. Most of the time we are drawn towards the positive side of living in Denmark. At that moment I realize that the internet has mostly covered the impossible side of Denmark especially to its foreigners. I decide to listen to what each one has to say which leads me to the following points;

Advantages of living in Denmark

Access to free healthcare

This is subjective. Danes do not like it when you say free. They cough high taxes to maintain it which explains the reason why their immigration rules are so stringent. For me it is not about taxes but the fact that the patient has to buy his own medicine after a diagnosis and prescription by a personal doctor. Unless it is a serious ailment, you will rarely receive any form of treatment. For instance, my son has been coughing for about two months now and I can’t give him a cough syrup to help sleep well at night. I am so Kenyan.

Access to Education

Education is a powerful tool wherever you go. It is not about money or even a job you are likely to secure. It is about the knowledge you possess. No one can ever take it away from you. It helps you think outside the box. In Denmark everyone has access to formal education up to masters level. This is also catered for by the taxpayers money. Seldom will you hear a Dane complaining about the tax because they see the results. We the foreigners view it as free. In my home country, the tax is high but it ends up in the few corrupt leaders bank accounts which makes it a privilege to live here. In our discussion during dinner we encourage each other to take the advantage and further our education. It is a way to integrate and you can equally compete for the job market with the locals.

High quality of living

All of us except one are struggling to secure a position in the job market here. However, even with the part time jobs we do, we are able to lead a decent life. We were discussing how normal it is that at the table we all own  iphones. It is normal. We get to calculating how much a baby sitting job will pay as compared to the worshiped government job back at home. These are some of the green pastures abroad.

Access to clean water is a right being exercised. Everyone, even the homeless are able afford a decent meal a day. There are food saving programs that see the grocery stores give out free food that is close to expiry date to the public. Infrastructure is highly developed with cycling as the main form of transport here. Moving from point A to B is within a blink of an eye with the electric trains. All you need is travel card to swipe.

Low crime rate 

It is already 10 p.m. We are still taking photos and talking about how we can or cannot date broke men. There are no topics about how one of us was brutally mugged in Ngara yesterday. We are not worried about how we are getting to our various homes. It is all sorted. There are patrol police in selected areas to protect us and not steal from us. We walk out of the amager centret and majestically get to the underground train, the metro. Google maps have got us covered in case we are unsure about the direction of the metro. Everyone has fast and affordable internet. There is no need to keep on checking the MBS left, you know.

Child friendly country

There are play grounds and green parks located in almost every corner of the country. As if that is not enough, some have even built the same on their backyards. These parks are not next to bars and restaurants where kids only visit on Sunday afternoon. It is an everyday affair here. The children connect with the nature. There are institutions called vuggestue and børnehave where you can take your children from the age of 9 months. They are well planned and baby friendly. The workers and pedagogues are highly educated in child care. The children get the best developmental skills from them. Furthermore, the mums have a paid one year maternity leave. If there is nothing else for me to appreciate about Denmark, then being a mom here has to be one.

In conclusion, a broke guy is relative according to the girls. For me, it is a guy who doesn’t have his life put together. We can’t be both at the same place, trying to figure this thing called life.. This post is not intended to boast or convince everyone to move to Denmark. However, for some of us fate brought us here and we have to look into the brighter side. Marion enjoyed her birthday and took so many photos. Great food and great company too.  It was a beautiful Sunday evening.

Nancy Njoka

xoxo

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