If you come across any blogger or "influencer" on Instagram or any social media site, the takeaway is usually that they have a pretty sweet, easy life. They jump from place to place, taking photos, and enjoying life, and that's pretty much all there is to it. I used to think the same, and felt like a lot of the accounts I admired had achieved that venerable status of having "made it" and got to just sit back and enjoy the free clothes and trips etc. that came with that accomplishment. I think a lot differently now. I have a hard time believing any of the hyper successful bloggers out there are just sitting back and lapping it up, because, if they were, they generally wouldn't have achieved that success in the first place. People don't often see the blogging or insta game as a form of entrepreneurship or even as owning your own business, but when it comes down to the basic definition of what we do: provide a service for a fee, it's exactly that, and entrepreneurship in any form is trying and stressful and a lot to handle and can truly just burn you out if you aren't tactical and a good steward over your time.
By the time we reached Copenhagen, the end of our time in Europe was less than a week away and Porter and I were definitely hitting that I'm-ready-to-sleep-for-ten-days-in-a-row wall. Don't get me wrong, our wells of gratitude for what we're able to do in this stage of life run very deep, we were simply exhausted. We flew from Marrakech into Denmark (our fifteenth flight of the leg) and pulled up after dark (so basically like 3 pm Copenhagen time) really praying our stay would turn out as we wanted it to. Because, here's the thing, for the last week of our time in Europe we'd purposefully booked a "spa" hotel, which sounds a little pretentious, I agree, but man oh man am I grateful we did. For four blissful days we didn't leave the property, took fitness classes, ate good clean food, got massages, slept deeply, and recalibrated ourselves to live in the moment and not worry about content or day trips or anything like that. We were at a spa hotel, after all, and we wanted to enjoy every last minute.
I've never been great at any sort of fitness class that's about slowing down. I'm more of a cardio person, as is Porter, but every day we took different yoga and meditation classes and even though it was hard not to laugh seeing Port attempt some of the poses, it legitimately slowed both of us down a little. We also got the chance to do a cooking class with the Michelin star chef that works for the hotel, an experience I know neither of us are ever going to forget. Cooking, honestly, is the single activity from a "normal" life I've missed the most. I'm not crazy talented or anything, but the repetition of chopping and mixing and following a recipe every night is something I enjoyed so much before our life on the road. Being in a kitchen again felt like a perfect unwinding experience for me. Kurhotel Skodsborg really pulled out all the stops for us, too. I'm a vegetarian, and they had us prepare gorgeous veggie-fueled dishes and had the most incredible fresh-pressed juices I've ever had. I'm so grateful we live in the age of juicing because I could drink vegetable juice all day long (straight carrot is my personal favorite, but people seem to have a vendetta against it. It's incredible, guys, I swear).
What was also so great about the cooking class was getting to talk and connect with such an incredibly creative person as Chef Thomas Rode. As creative types ourselves, I find those moments of mentorship or even just interacting with other creative people who you find inspiring so incredibly refueling. So, yes, even though the hotel thought the massages were going to be what helped us relax, I really think our conversations with the chef about everything from subsistence farming to the paleo diet to sustainable fashion did even more so. I also find successful, creative people always have the most interesting stories for how they came to be a success. Chefs, especially. I feel like creative people don't usually stumble into success but take the most interesting, fate-fueled, circuitous routes, and I love reading about and hearing about different people's stories...
Another element of our stay Porter absolutely loved was getting to jump in the ocean. Kurhotel Skodsborg is famous for this sauna class they do called Sauna Gus, and after the class the whole group goes across the street and jumps into the Baltic Sea.
Supposedly, it's super invigorating. Porter has done that New Year's Day polar plunge a few times, so he was all about this. I'm more of a warm water person, myself, but he seemed like he'd had about ten cups of coffee for a solid half hour after taking the dip so it must truly work. I remember seeing people in Ireland do this, even all winter long. It was especially popular with older people (for good health) but seemed so counterintuitive to the whole "if your hair's wet, you'll catch a cold in the winter" mantra my mum drilled into us throughout our childhood.
Just a few more posts to share from our time in Europe and I'll finally be caught up! Hope you enjoy the pics & thank you so much for all the kind feedback we got from showing the before & after edits of our photos on our Insta Stories yesterday! It was a really encouraging day!
Anna Lisa & Porter
*A huge thank you to Kurhotel Skodsborg for sponsoring this post. As always, all thoughts & opinions remain our own.