I came to Copenhagen for the first time in 1965, I was 23 years old, a GI on a 3-day pass from an Army base in Fulda,Germany.

Back then Copenhagen had a reputation for a great jazz music scene, good beer, famous furniture and design, ancient Viking culture, etc, but most young guys were interested in one ultimate and extreme attraction above all others: Danish Girls.

Danish Girls were reported to be beautiful, friendly, smart, and into "free sex". The guys flocked into town.

Me too: lonely, horny, interested, hopeful, I arrived with some friends, but spent most of my time wandering alone around the old Strøget streets in light drizzling rain, sleeping in a car, eating Danish hot dogs and smørrebrod. Met no girls, but I saw them, and they really were appealing. And so was the town, I loved it, simply My Kind Of Place. Vowed to return, which I did.

I can't really say why this place was THE Place. It looks a lot like Amsterdam, but I never wanted to stay in Amsterdam. I liked Germany too, but didn't stay there either. Paris was tempting, but no other place gave me the quite feeling of longing to belong that Copenhagen did. (Ok, maybe Oaxaca in Mexico, but that was later.)

It's a charming city: 800 years old, copper-roofed brick buildings, canals, a pleasant harbor, a great pedestrian area, huge old European-style train station, a hodgepodge of architectural styles, even modern steel and glass but no skyscrapers to break the style, although lots of ancient towers.

The American throwaway mentality has not taken hold here, a city this old does not change rapidly. There is still no freeway through town, which is not too big, not too small. Traffic has not been a major problem--in fact much of the traffic is bicycle. No hills, very flat.

I even liked the funny-sounding Danish language, started learning it right away, even though so many people spoke such good English that it was (A) very easy to get along, and (B) difficult to get to speak the language because everyone wanted to use their English on me. And I found that it wasn't just the Danish girls that were nice, but Danes in general--guys too, older people, the whole society seemed enlightened, cultural, modern, friendly, fair.

Personally. I feel that the most apealling trait about the Danes is their sense of fairness. It corresponds with my own and makes their society a comfortable and pleasant place to be.

So I ended up living here with one of those wonderful Danish girls. I'm glad I don't have to envy me.