May 07, 2013

Family Heritage

The view of the Baltic Sea from our hotel room
A fantastic day on the island of Bornholm. We are staying in Ronne, the main city. The island is small with lots of quaint little towns and many farms. The view from our hotel room overlooking the Baltic Sea is stunning!

This morning we drove from our hotel on Ronne to Bodilsker (a small village) and visited the church (Bodils Kirke) where my 3rd great grandfather, Peter Nielson (1824-1894), was christened. It's a medieval church built in the 1100's and is still in use today. The bell tower was constructed later in 1610 and we got to go up in it. The caretaker gave us a little tour and explained how he rings the bell manually (so it won't crack) twice a day. There was a second bell installed in 1841 but it is only rung on special occasions, when 2 bells are needed.

The church is small but lovely. We all sat in the pews and read aloud excerpts from Peter's diary. He immigrated to the US in 1861 with his wife and son, but up until then he had lived in Denmark (Bornholm and Copenhagen). It was fun to be where he lived.

Then we split up into small groups in cars and drove around the island exploring for a while. It's truly lovely! I can certainly see why it's a popular vacation spot. We found a little town called Svanete (a cute fishing town) where we walked around and checked out the shops. We found a glass shop where they were demonstrating their handblown and fired glass techniques. It was so cool! We watched for a while and bought of a couple of small glass bowls as souvenirs. There were lots of other cool shops too but the glass shop as by far the most fascinating.

Then we headed down south to the beach. The sand is very white and extremely fine and soft. We walked along the beach and even got our feet wet. The Baltic Sea is VERY cold, but it was fun.

Then we drove back to our hotel and took a short rest before heading to Hasle and Vang Havn for dinner at Le Port, an amazing restaurant looking over the water.

The food was exceptional! There were two kinds of dense bread (one flavored with anise which was different but very good) along with 2 like a mayo flavored with white garlic that is sweet and incredibly delicious, and the other was like a whipped butter with herbs and musli in it. Very good! Then we had smoked salmon, which I liked more than I expected I would. Then an absolutely divine soup with a lobster cake in it. I don't know what all was in it but it was unbelievably delicious!

 Then we had veal with mushrooms, potatoes, parsnips, and whipped parsley root (?) which was also excellent, and then finished with a dessert of a white chocolate dessert with a rhubarb sherbet that was unexpectedly delicious. The service was fantastic and the owner, Gabriela, was so sweet and friendly and gracious. We watched the sunset during our dinner (which is very long and slow this time of year.... it stays light very late!), which was beautiful. We spent a perfect evening enjoying fabulous food and excellent company in a fantastic setting.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please feel free to leave comments that are appropriate and friendly.