Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Super visit to Esbjerg for Super Saturday

One of the nice things about our mission is the responsibility we have to travel through out Denmark for meetings and events. About a month ago we went to Esbjerg (es-beer) about an hour and half from Odense. We stayed in a hotel in the middle of town and attended a super saturday (held monthly) for our young adults (as well as the 13-17 year olds in Denmark). The theme for this Saturday was "Gold Digger". There were gold chocolate coins all over the tables and a large gold mine poster with lots of hats and costumes to wear to have your picture taken with your friends in the pretend miners cave. There were spiritual classes, very nice food served, a treasure hunt, and an evening dance.
We had a great weekend there. I already recorded our meeting of Rene's family- in an earlier post. Rene's grandfather was baptized by Carl many years ago. An overnight trip like this allows us to spend more time visiting wonderful Danish landmarks, as well as places where Carl lived and worked fifty years ago.

We discovered an old windmill amoung the little Danish homes on a hill in Esbjerg. Then we traveled along the coast and rediscovered (Nan and Kathy saw this with us ten years ago) these giant surprise statues facing out to sea. We found out more about them in a little brochure from the hotel.

This is the story behind these giant men with no hands. "Visitors arriving in Esbjerg from the sea are greeted by "Man Meets The Sea", which was raised on Esbjerg's 100th anniversary. It was officially unveiled in 1995.
The sculpture portrays the meeting between pure, unspoilt mankind and nature. Man, innocent as from his mother's womb, Man before rising up and beginning to act. That, according to Wiig Hansen (the sculptur) was where things started to go wrong..when man got "dirt" on his hands. Wiig Hansen has portrayed this encounter by creating a universal sculpture that has the mood of a temple..a sculpture with a sacred aura to it.
The sacred aura is attained by the rigid appearance of the human figures.. The legs are like the columns of a Greek temple. The lower legs have been made so long precisely so as to achieve the columnlike effect. The upper legs are short in proportion. The identical heads, with which their inscrutable and unfathomable expressions gaze out towards the sea..and the entrance to the harbour, also contribute greatly to the glimpse you get of the supernatural- a hint of the divine."

I have tried very hard to love these huge "men meeting the sea." I am missing "the Hint of the Divine." I still have the same cold feelings I had when they surprised us ten years ago as we were driving along the Danish coast... Here are four odd giant men- all with the same heads- staring out to sea without any hands. If you look closely at the first picture you will see another odd person, much smaller but a lot wiser (me) staring out to sea with the men in white.


  1. I think giant sculptures are really impressive but I agree that these seem to be missing something else besides their hands. and I'm sorry, but they all seem to be sitting on toilets as well.

  2. i love those giant men! i guess i'm not the first daughter to have an opinion that opposes her mother's!

    i love that windmill! wow!!

    i'm not sure the danes understand the term 'gold digger'! or were they trying to appeal to older, older men?