I may be old-fashioned but when I arrive at an hotel, I’ve come to expect to see someone, even if they take their time appearing at reception.
I dropped big sister off in Glamsbjerg (and spotted a railway line to snap) where she could spend the next few days talking dogs with her breeder friends which gave me the perfect excuse to further my research into Aage Georg Schad, the painter of the portrait I’d bought in a junk shop in Sweden in the 90’s.
I hopped aboard the ferry at Ystad (pronounced ‘oershtal’) in Sweden for a 50kt roller-coaster of a ride in one of the biggest catamarans afloat, to the island of Bornholm which is out in the Baltic, just below the Swedish mainland.
It was almost dark when I got into port at Ronne but the hotel was only a few minutes from the harbour and I parked outside to unload my bags. I went in and as there was no desk or anything and thinking I might have gone in the back door, I searched the place looking for some sort of reception or at least some sign of life. Nothing….. until I noticed an envelope on a shelf in the hallway with my name on it. It contained the keys to my room so that was a start but, what do I do with the car? I went back outside and wandered up and down the street trying to decipher the instructions on the parking notices – Danish is not my strong suit. Then I noticed a girl struggling with a pram up the steps of the hotel and seized my chance. Fortunately, practically everyone you meet in Scandinavia speaks excellent English and this young mum was no exception. My parking worries over, I went to look for something to eat; everywhere was closed (the off-season) except the garage which offered a selection of crisps and some local beer.
Jolly good it was too! You’ll notice of course, that the label is in the shape of the island of Bornholm. I’ll pop back tomorrow and buy a selection box to take back with me.
The island is not huge so I decided that I would go the long way round to the Kunstmuseum and try to get some feel for the landscape. There’s something here that’s very reminiscent of Cape Cod. If Hopper had been Danish, this is where he would have painted. Certainly the architecture; wooden and once bright but now fading painted houses set in isolation…..
… and the rugged coastline would have appealed to him. I didn’t have enough time to seek out the ‘Hopper’ shot but it’s without doubt, here somewhere.
The Bornholm Kunstmuseum is a gallery which should be on every art-lovers ‘must visit’ list. Besides a truly excellent lunch, the permanent collection is wholly unpretentious and full of delights. It concentrates on artists connected with Bornholm and the Bornholm School of Painters but, typically, the only person missing is Aage Schad!
I had a chat with the staff and left some pictures so this extraordinarily odd omission may yet be rectified.