Monday, June 6th
Sunday, June 5th
Saturday, June 4th
What follows is a series of posts describing an abroad trip that I recently took to Denmark with the KIIS Institute For International Studies.
I had wanted to do this blog while I was actually in Denmark, but it rapidly became clear that there would be nowhere near enough time for that. I’ve endeavored to do it as quickly as possible after getting back, while the trip was still fresh in my memory, but a few things came up in the interim. An emergency appendectomy (not mine), for one thing. Luckily, I keep a journal, and relentlessly photographed almost everything I saw, so I had plenty of reference to fall back on. I can’t provide a moment-by-moment account for every detail of the trip, but I think what I have is sufficient to tell the tale.
More than sufficient, maybe. Some of these entries get a bit long. Pack a lunch.
One thing I particularly want to point out is the inclusion of certain people in my descriptions, or rather a lack thereof. Shockingly, I did not travel to Denmark and spend a month there alone; I was in the company of eleven other students, three professors, and the accompanying family of one of said professors. Now, obviously it was impossible to describe all the events of the trip in any manner that made sense without referring to the other people around me, but at the same time I felt cautious about doing so. Talking about other people on the internet can be a dangerous thing, after all, and while I had no intentions of any slander, I didn’t know if people might be upset to be referred to specifically. So I have not called anyone by name and avoided singling anyone out except where strictly necessary. (Except in the case of the three professors. Given that their names are all publicly available on the KIIS website page for this course, it didn’t exactly seem like it could hurt much to refer to them.) On the other hand, this has resulted in some remarkably self-centered anecdotes. I would just like to say here and now, then, that if it sounds like I’m going on as if I were the only important person on this trip, that was never my intention.
I’ve also tried not to include any photographs with any significant portion of my groupmates in them, for the same reason. In general I tried not to take any pictures with other people in them, but that wasn’t always an option.
Finally, on the strange off-chance that anyone Danish (or simply anyone more familiar with Denmark than I am) ever reads this, I feel a lot of it will probably seem obvious or laughable, and it’s entirely possible I’ve made some incredible mistakes. I acknowledge a good deal of naivete, particularly (or relevantly) in regards to international travel, Danish culture, public transportation, hostel etiquette, Europe, and plane voyages. If you do find such things, feel free to laugh. I’d appreciate it if you’d point those mistakes out to me so I can correct them, but laugh about it first. I found plenty of things about Denmark inexplicable or amusing, and turnabout seems only fair.
And that’s it.
The end of the game? Certainly not. There is no end to the game; no credits ever roll for Skyrim. There’s plenty of meat left in the game-the main quest is just the tip of the iceberg, if you’ll forgive my mixed metaphors. There are five main faction quests (the Companions, the College, the Thieves Guild, the Dark Brotherhood and the Civil War), 16 Daedric quests, nine cities to explore, five houses to buy, a massive map full of locations to discover, and piles of quests to complete. Even after you’ve exhausted every named quest, things still go on, plants still grow, locations respawn, dragons attack*, and NPCs will give you a neverending stream of ‘radiant’ quests, which are almost all something along the lines of ‘go fetch item x from dungeon y’ or ‘go to dungeon y and kill person z’. It’s also not actually possible to do everything in one playthrough, not that Bethesda didn’t try.
*That’s right, dragons keep on randomly spawning and attacking things even after you complete the main quest. Tullius is gonna think I ripped him off.
However, over the past slightly-over-a-month I have demonstrated for you the entire main quest line, with a few sidetrips here and there. And that is good enough for me, quite frankly, for the time being. It is certainly the most I have ever completed of any Elder Scrolls game. And I got my virtual snow.
So there you have it: forty days of Skryim. It kind of got away from me. I said at the beginning that I figured it would just be random things that I came across while playing the game, and instead…well. Granted, not all the updates actually corresponded to the proper day, but you have forty days (more or less), forty updates, what more do you want. Hey, I actually completed something. That is a big accomplishment for me! Maybe I can complete more things in the future.
I hope that, should anyone have been reading it, it was at least somewhat enjoyable for you.
Now my break is over and I have to go back and study actual history and actual language. I don’t think-I certainly don’t hope-that everything’s going to go silent for months like it did the last time I started a semester. I have more ideas for things, and the Doctor Who Odyssey is still waiting. I think I’m going to take a break for a few days though. My fingers are sore.
So this is Sovngarde. The afterlife for Nords who have died in valiant battle. A realm where great heroes feast and fight for eternity.
It’s very glowy.
One loading screen later, Odahviing drops me off at Skuldafn with this helpful bit of advice:
“This is as far as I can take you. Krif voth ahkrin (fight with courage). I will look for your return, or Alduin’s.”
And with that he flies off.
There’s still one order of business to take care of before summoning Odahviing: avenging Sinderion. To that end, I head back to Blackreach.