01-10-2012, 04:45 PM
These are proofread versions of previous posts.
American Dane has very kindly and very patiently edited out various grammatical mistakes made by me.
Excerpts from the chapter: Frømand 210 – Frogman 210.
From the portrait book.
This chapter deals with Frederik’s time in the Frogman Corps.
That late summers day in 1995, Frederik feels very little, when he is called to the chief’s office. The Crown Prince is a little more than halfway through the demanding training in the Navy Frogman Corps. (1) He has seen mates fall out. More than 300 hopeful young men applied and only thirteen passed. Now only four are remaining. Pingo (Frederik), Pip, Trofast and Qvark. The rest have not passed the stone hard exercises. Either their physique have failed them. Or the psyche. Frederik wants to complete the training. He wants to call himself frogman. The meeting with the chief of the Frogman Corps, naval commander, Mogens Christens, makes Frederik tremble with nervousness that he will never fulfil his dream.
“We have a stop-test, (2) where the students has to run 2.400 meters (about 1½ miles) in hilly terrain, in combat uniform, boots and weapons in less than eleven minutes. The leader of the school of students came up and told me that Frederik hadn’t passed within the designated time. He was told that it wasn’t good enough and that he had until next Monday, where the test would be repeated – and if he didn’t pass, he was out. That went straight to the brain. It’s the writing on the wall. Demands that will not be eased. All the objective demands are there, whether you are a crown prince or not. What was he to do with special treatment? If Frederik was freewheeling, he would get the stamp from his colleagues forever”, determines Mogens Christens.
It’s a down spirited and sweaty Frederik who leaves the chief’s office and walks down the long corridor where the walls are covered with photographs of former frogmen. More than 200 black and white portraits of young men hang lined up as a testimony that they completed the frogman training. To get your portrait with number and name added to the gallery is an honour all frogmen-students aspire to. The Crown Prince knows well that he has to mobilize all his energy in order to pass the stop-test on Monday. It takes determination. Willpower. Psyche. Muscles.
Beforehand Frederik didn’t put too much significance into the stop-test.
“But we had just finished a pretty long week, where we were pressured very hard, training-wise and finishing in walking a very long distance home. I felt that my muscles had been worn away and that everything I had of fat-tissue and depots had been spent. It was a blinding hot August day and to run a stop-run in uniform and with the rifle on the back wasn’t the thing to do. The run however wasn’t particularly long but the terrain was very hilly at the end. Damn, I thought, and (I) knew at once that this is where it went wrong. But I also knew that I had one more chance to pass the test. That finishing in time had to be done and that there was no negotiation. I didn’t feel that well and (I) started to visualise in details how my exit from the Frogman Corps would be like”.
On Monday the decisive hour come. Frederik’s heart is pounding. He remembers the physical training in the forenoon and the communal run in the afternoon. At 16.00 everyone is dismissed in order to rest for a couple of hours on the bunk, before the exercises in the evening and night. But for Frederik the bunk will have to wait, because one of the instructors points to him and say that the hour has come.
“The instructor ran with me (3) and I knew that this was the final chance”.
Frederik completed the boot-run in the second attempt in 10 minutes and 53 seconds. Seven seconds under the time-limit. An unusual achievement. A victory and a liberation. And a turning point for Frederik. He can continue in the Frogman Corps and keep the hope and dream of becoming a frogman.
“It was a great pleasure and I knew that now I would make it through the complete course. I just knew that now I could make it. I had become so seasoned and (I) could shut off. Emergency training, run and exercises without sleep, would not be allowed to destroy me mentally. It was an exciting process to be in”, says Frederik and recalls clearly that only the following year after the nerve-wrecking stop-test another student left the frogman training after the exact same exercise and (he) didn’t pass chance number two.
The chief of the Frogman Corps believes that Frederik’s iron will made the difference.
“He found the edge. He knew that it was either fail or break”, says Mogens Christens.
(1) First a few months as an aspirant, just to get in, then even more months as a student, before you can finally call yourself a fully fledged Frogman.
(2) I you fail, you’re out.
(3) Frogmen students in general and aspirants in particular are not allowed to walk or stand still. They must always run, or if queuing do double time on the spot.
When an aspirant makes a mistake he is encouraged. I.e. he must do say 25 push ups, after which he is expected the sincerely thank the instructor for allowing him to strengthen his weak body.
I remember I attended a course at Frederikhavn naval station in 88, I think. There were some frogmen aspirants there at the same time, and while the rest of us walked towards the mess, the aspirants ran, and stood outside the mess doing double time waiting for it to open.
Back then aspirants were only allowed to quit on Thursdays. If they happened to break down on a Friday, too bad. They would have to complete the entire training schedule until the following Thursday.
01-10-2012, 04:47 PM
The Crown Prince gets no special treatment at all in the eight months he is staying at Kongsøre in western Zealand training to become a frogman.
When you sign up, you must according to the commander in chief of the Frogman Corps tighten your buttocks. No matter who you are. As a Crown Prince, Frederik is only extraordinarily granted leave three times. Among others for the 50th anniversary celebrations of the liberation of Denmark and in connection with the 85th birthday of Queen Ingrid.
That Frederik has no special status also leads to amusing experiences for the other students. When Queen Margrethe is travelling abroad, the Crown Prince as Regent has to sign bills passed in the Parliament (1) before they become valid. But Frederik isn’t granted time off for such relaxation. Instead a crown car (2), drives through the main gate and Frederik runs along in order to sign the laws of the country – and then return to the lessons running. In the area of the Frogman Corps all movements means running from morning till evening and the driver in the crown car has to get used to the fact that it’s a running Crown Prince who fetch the documents and in lightning speed puts his signature.
It months with a Spartan (very austere) bunk and a small worn locker for personal effects, but on the other hand there is a fantastic comradeship, a common struggle to achieve the dream and a divine view over beech forest, hills and valleys and Ise Fjord.
As soon as the students step into the frogman camp in Kongsøre, everyone says formal you (De) to each other. And even though the Crown Prince is used to be addressed with formal you, it’s still unusual for him not to use informal you (du) with those of his own age. Both as a high-school student, recruit in the Royal Lifeguards at Høvelte Barracks and as a student at Aarhus University, there has been an informal tone, which suits the young Frederik so well and makes the heir to the throne feel like any other young man.
But to use formal ‘you’ in the Frogman Corps is, according to Mogens Christens, a consideration in order to protect the students. By keeping a distance and not becoming too familiar during the frogman training the students acquire the armour towards the world, which might help them through the ordeals, is the explanation.
(Each morning starts with the students singing the psalm: I østen stiger solen op = The sun rise in the east. Actually a beautiful song but hated by generations of schoolchildren and recruits, wading through cold mud in a November pre-dawn, singing that song in order to “encourage the sun to rise”).
“The eight verses were a part of the morning in the Frogman Corps and then lay 24 or 36 hours of hardship in front of you. To me the morning song wasn’t like a respite or calm before the storm. It was more fun, because it sounded terribly. And then the song had to be spiced up. We were make up and sing a ninth verse and it had to rhyme reasonably well. That was your duty! We were hunted animals and terrified and in the beginning it was also difficult to memorise all eight verses by heart. If you couldn’t you were on your way home already. (3) It was pretty wacky to stand to attention, facing east and sing while a piece of firewood was used as a conductors baton. (4) But it’s a good memory and I still know the song by heart. The good thing is that it can be used at all major events in church – it’s universal in church-context – I sang it at my wedding and at Christian’s christening, because it’s a beautiful song”.
Immediately after the morning song starts the first two hours of hard training. Push ups. Pull ups. Running. From Monday morning until late Tuesday afternoon all are busy with exercises and training and (they) skip most of the sleep at night. Off Tuesday evening and everyone turn out precisely on the dot Wednesday morning for the song-ritual, which continue with exercises until Thursday evening. Friday the lessons end in late afternoon and then there is a much needed weekend-rest for soul and body. Unless you during the week have wavered, answered back to an NCO or overslept. Then you get what in frogman terms are labelled rewards, but what everyone else will call punishment. Rewards can be 100 extra push ups or leaps and they have to be completed before the students can go on the needed liberty. (5)
“We train their concentration, so that they can maintain the concentration under pressure. They are going out on life threatening missions and that’s why it’s always at the edge in order to teach the act in war and chaos. There is little sleep and high intensity”, says Mogens Christens.
The good friend of the Crown Prince, Jeppe Handwerk completes the frogman training five years prior to Frederik and he himself (Frederik) has Jeppe as an instructor taking part in whipping would be frogmen through the bone-hard training.
“What happens is that you break people down in order to build them up again. That means that you push the student both physically and mentally way out there, where he almost quits, in order to show him that he can actually move even further out. When he thinks that he can’t take anymore, he still can after all. You learn incredibly much about yourself. You are on the edge of breaking down many times”, determines Jeppe handwerk. (6)
(1) A bill is passed in the Parliament, making it a law.
The Monarch/Regent/Rigsforstander signs the bill in order to make it valid.
But the law cannot be enforced until at has been announced to the public in Statstidende. A paper for all such official announcements
(2) Crown car = all official cars used by the DRF. So called because they have a crown on the number plates.
(3) A simply and initial memory training. If you can’t memorise a text, they can hardly use you in the special forces.
(4) No more wacky than standing at the edge of a cold and deep water-pond after a lesson and the NCO ask those who in their own mind think they have performed unsatisfactory, to take one step forward. After which you and some of your comrades stand to attention and step out.
They is little yelling and screaming in the Danish army, let alone in the special forces, that is not considered necessary. People who can’t figure out how to obey a spoken command in a normal tone have no place in the special forces.
Well, actually there is some yelling. But that’s more for fun and in order to keep up the morale. When I was a conscript one of the other platoons had a conscript sergeant. He was a square man, with a square body, a square head and rectangular arms and legs and when he bellowed out his commands people must have turned around on the streets outside the barracks!
He was actually a very nice guy and to our amusement he wanted to study theology. I don’t know if he ever did. After finishing as recruits we all went to specialist training and I never met – nor heard him again.
He yelled just to amuse us and ironically most of us in the company would have followed him without hesitation because we wanted to, that was not the case with all the NCOs!
(5) This is for students of course. Aspirants will have to wait weeks before they are finally allowed a weekend leave.
(6) There is a good deal of truth in that. An NCO told us: “You can do twice as much as you yourself think you can. And ten times as much as your mothers think you can”.
Kindly proofread by American Dane.
01-10-2012, 04:51 PM
For the first few weeks Frederik and the other frogmen students basically live out in the nature. Learn how to stay and survive in a forest. Learn how to use weapons and always keep them within reach. That can be the difference between life and death during a live operation. A slug for dinner is nothing unusual. All of that building up to the first stop-test, which in the jargon of the frogmen is called hell-week. Here the students come out in the field from Monday to Friday, and each time they think, now they can rest a bit, the instructors launch a mock attack, which they have to defend themselves against.
“We send them almost on the run for an entire week while at the same time there are a number of difficult task and some objectives they have to reach on the way. That weeds out the weak. Not everyone makes it through hell-week”, determines Mogens Christens.
For Frederik the hardships of hell-week is still very clear in his memory.
Already halfway in you were so strained that you ran on a weird invisible drive. We toiled as if we were going to build the pyramids. We were more dead than alive, but afterwards we felt tough/cool. We had survived it. We had the drive – that wasn’t what would knock us out”.
Frederik pulls through hell-week thanks to what the leader of the corps, Mogens Christens calls a “fantastic ability to orient himself in a forest”. Later Frederik also manages the 120-kilometre march, where the soldiers have to demonstrate self-preservation and stamina. There is nothing wrong with the psyche during the march, there is with Frederik’s feet however. They hurt like mad and when he on Friday is dismissed, he drives directly to his good friend Christian Buchwald, who is a trained doctor.
Buchwald explains that neither his wife (formal word), Elisabeth, who was stirring the pots, nor his three children will forget the damaged feet which the Crown Prince put up on the table, so that the doctor could bandage them.
“Frederik will not jump the fence in the low end, (idiom) neither as a man, nor as a frogman. There simply was no more skin left on his foot soles. But I could back away my medical recommendation about taking a break from the hardships. If you say A, you must according to Frederik, naturally also say B. (Idiom). No matter who you are. You have to take part in the communal/common (activities) on the same level as everybody else. So he went back to camp with my bandages and worried remarks. Ready for another week with both outer and inner battles, which had to be won. And were won, regardless the bloody blisters”.
Monday, Frederik is again ready for another day, another week with inner struggles.
And every day and every hour in the Frogman Corps is almost like a stop-test according to Jeppe Handwerk. In fact it was the frogman mate, Rolex, which is Jeppe Handwerk’s name in the corps, who among others in Frederik’s circle of friends who encouraged the Crown Prince to apply.
“I did know the Crown Prince very well and I knew he had the skills to go through the training. I was present at the admission test and it was pretty crazy to see your good friend go through 36 hours of drill without sleep and get whipped through humiliation and a difficult level of pressure. Most drop out already through the admission test, where they are assessed on their physical abilities and mental balance. It was pretty impressive that Frederik managed to clear the rocks (idiom)”, explains Jeppe Handwerk and reminds (us) that the Crown Prince actually had all odds stacked against him at the admission test in October 1994. Frederik was at that time working for three months at the Danish UN mission in New York and he flew home from the US just to take part in the admission test during the weekend.
Frederik also recall the admission test as being exhausting.
“I touched down Thursday afternoon after a long flight and then had to go through an admission test with jetlag. But fortunately I completed and I was proud and happy – and then Jeppe warned me with the words: that now the serious bit begins. And it did. I really didn’t believe in myself, but I also knew that at some point later in my life I would regret it, if I didn’t dare try. To tell other with barely concealed annoyance that I thought but didn’t do it. I was well aware of the risk, of me not making it, was very, very high. My own odds against myself were poor. But it was worth it – to dare try the admission test. It’s better to try and act then settling for considering. It’s better to take a chance”, says Frederik who has always adhered to the motto: To dare is to lose the footing for a moment, not to dare is to lose yourself.
Jeppe Handwerk can also easily recall the stop-test, where Frederik was in danger of being kicked out of the corps.
“I had him on the phone right away. He was nervous. This was serious and I’m pretty sure the Crown Prince didn’t go to town with the pedal down that weekend. My advice to him was to focus on what he wanted to achieve and not feel sorry for himself. It happens way too often that you feel sorry for yourself, and that is always paralysing and a handicap”.
Undauntedly proofread by American Dane.
01-10-2012, 04:52 PM
A frogman is basically a cross between a special forces soldier and a sailor, and as such every frogman must be confident with the elements of water. Just like other frogmen Frederik has spend long dark night in a kayak paddling across Ise Fjord. Just as he has passed several stop tests in the water – among them a ten kilometre swim at sea.
Also the dive training, which takes place in Dragsholm and in the cold waves of Ise Fjord, challenges the young men. The students are taught all sorts of diving and swimming techniques. As one of the very first they must swim 50 metres with their hands and feet tied. According to Mogens Christens it’s common sense to teach the students that sort of things. During the Vietnam War there were for example soldiers who were thrown overboard arms and legs tied. By going through that sort of exercises the students learn self-control and to control their feelings.
In time the exercises become more advanced, just as the students learn to handle diving equipment, tubes and bottles under water. All that to provide them with a safety and surplus. Sometimes they will be thrown into situations where they very fast have to figure out how to survive. By installing self-confidence and safety into people, they’ll know what to do when they at some point end up in trouble.
“Diving is trained very qualified (to a very high degree of competence). Diving can be dangerous: Either you do it right or you die. Frederik is very skilled at diving. He is in complete control beneath the surface of the sea. He master that element and he is like a fish in the water”, determines Mogens Christens and says that Frederik in his time in the Frogman Corps also have been on exercises where he is jumping from a helicopter in open sea, only to climb onboard an oil rig in the North Sea. A dangerous operation as so many others within the Frogman Corps, which as such always has a doctor permanently attached to provide first aid.
The constant pressure and stress is according to Frederik hardening and mobilising all your strength.
“You’ll never pull through that, I thought sometimes. Now you do it! There is no such thing as can’t or quitting, just because you didn’t have the guts. The more Fridays that past, the more challenges you managed, which you had never imagined you could manage. You became happy and proud and satisfied and calm”.
It’s in Kongsøre that Frederik gets the nickname Pingo. During dive training a number of confidence tests are carried out, among them that the diving suit is filled with water, while the student is wearing it. Frederik’s team is among other things send out on a short walk with the suit on and filled with water. And the head of the Frogman Corps is still amused about the anecdotes told about the Crown Prince’s peculiar walk.
“He walked very waddlely. Like a penguin. On top of that he tumbled over on the way and all the water he pressured half way out the neck opening in the diving suit. There he lay – like a penguin, when it slides through the narrow gaps through the ice on the South Pole”, tells Mogens Christens.
The name Pingo becomes imperishable and together with Pip and the others Pingo goes through the legendary baptism ritual of the Corps.
The ceremony for the frogmen students takes place in a huge boat hall built from wood out on a pier. Everyone listens while there is read out from a baptismal certificate, where the reason for the name is outlined. Then the student to be baptised get a smack on the behind with a paddle pushing him into the water. There is a nine metre drop to the cold waves and everbody cheers when the frogman resurfaces again. Now the “frog” has been baptised and initiated – and most visit throughout their lives the association: Frogman Emeritus.
To this day Rolex and Pingo often rekindle their experiences in the corps. Because eventhough Jeppe Handwerk completed the training several years before the Crown Prince, they are both a part of the “wolfpack” and they can still laugh about an infamous instructor, who was very tough. Or they can talk about the student who had broken down under the hard pressure and sopped out in the bathroom at night, and how you as a mate managed to help them, when they were down you were up yourself. Knowing very well that the day after tomorrow the roles between the weak and the strong can be switched. Due to an ankle that hurts, or a psyche that is tormenting. Or Rolex and Pingo can laugh at how they were constantly starving and as such ate giant portions of food in order to get the 5.000 calories needed every day. During the frogman training it takes a double ration of food to get enough energy. And to come home to Katja Storkholm in the weekends and off load and relax is bliss for Frederik.
According to Mogens Christens frogmen are defined by resting within themselves and that they have a very high degree of self-esteem. It radiates from frogmen and jägers (the army special forces) that they are difficult to knock out of course.
“Once you have been through such a course, you can deal with anything and that has attracted a Crown Prince who was insecure as child and when young. In his youth he meets some frogmen and it’s my conviction that the Crown Prince saw that he could get that needed robustness for the future job as in king, in the Frogman Corps, and as such he was ready to take on the big personal risk. Frogmen don’t drop from the perch when they are shaken.
Frederik has a enormously strong psyche. The problem was perhaps to find it and then he found it here in Kongsøre. But if he hadn’t had that strong psyche and willpower beforehand, he would never have completed the frogman training”, detrmines Mogens Christens.
Tirelessly proofread by American Dane.
01-10-2012, 04:55 PM
In the Frogman Corps everthing is immersed in the philosophy which to put it short says: “thought, action and consequence”. That you must think before you act but the moment you act it has consequences for you. That there will always be a connection. And according to Mogens Christens that philosophy has helped shape the life later on for the Crown Prince and made him far more able to act and always courageous and ready to make choices and take the consequences of his choices right on. (1)
“Apart from that, everyone in the Frogman Corps learns to empathise with other people. And Frederik has an incredible sense of empathy and feeling for how people around him feel. We all would like a king with a high degree of empathy and we will get that in Frederik”, says Mogens Christens.
In the eyes of Mogens Christen, Frederik runs a huge personal risk by even attending the admission test as a frogman. All other students perhaps have to go out and tell their closest family and friends that they would have liked to become frogmen and maybe later reveal that they weren’t strong enough. To be dumped is always a defeat, but to a Crown Prince who has to go out and explain himself to an entire nation it would be a double-defeat.
“Frederik risked having to tell everyone that he didn’t make it. What drew him here have been so strong that he was willing to run the risk of all papers and magazines in Denmark and the population talking about the Crown Prince not making the frogman education”.
Nor is Jeppe Hendwerk hesitant in proclaiming the time in the Frogman Corps as a turning point in the life of Frederik. Today Frederik has a (mental) surplus and he is good at mingling with all sorts of people and he is better than he was before the Frogman Corps. He has gotten good ballast and he can better analyse his problems.
“I was very nervous about him not being able to make it through the education. The rest of us would simple not get our number and then we would have found something else that was interesting to do for the rest of our life. But to a Crown Prince it’s different”, determines Jeppe Handwerk.
Also the chief of the Frogman Corps, Mogens Christens assesses that the completion of the frogman training had been determining for where the Crown Prince stands today.
“Frederik learned to use all his energy and never give up. He got to know his strong and weak sides, to exceed his own limits and first and foremost to work in a team where everyone is dependent on the help and effort of each other. He got a bigger insight into himself and a bigger insight into other people. Today he is a stronger person and I seed depth and self-esteem”, says Mogens Christens.
When Frederik became a frogman in November 1995 (2) he got the number 210 and his portrait was placed in the coveted gallery in the main building of the corps. He stays on for a little more than two years more in the Frogman Corps, where he among other things works as an operations officer and main planner for a big exercise at Rømø. (An island).
“Mentally the frogman training provides an enormous outlook and insight and an understanding of yourself and your abilities and limits. It’s a smahing good education and an exciting way to go. Not being said that all young men between 20 and 30 should throw themselves out in an accomplishment, but it is possible first to become a frogman, then specialise within the corps and also to get an education and a job in the civillian life afterwards”, says Frederik and promotes the Frogman Corps everywhere.
After having worked in the Frogman Corps for a couple of years Frederik decides to have a shark tattooed on his right ankle. The shark is the symbol of having completed the frogman training, and Frederik thinks long about it, before he puts himself in what he calls the dentist’s chair.
Today Frederik wears the uniform of the navy with great pride and as a symbolic gesture towards all he learned in the Frogman Corps. And when his son Christian and daughter Isabella are to be tucked at home in Kancellihuset at Fredensborg by dad, he oftens sings “I østen stiger solen op = The sun rises in the east”, because he knows that song by heart. That’s a cradle-gift to the children from dad.
In military circles there is genuine respect for Frederik. No matter whether you are a private soldier or lieutenant colonel, you know that the Crown Prince did well in all three branches. And that respect is something Frederik appreciates the most. When he started in the Frogman Corps he sensed that some weren’t that keen on him and feared that he would ruin the good reputation of the elite corps.
“Not everyone was that enthusiastic about me, and in particular when I had to go through the stop-test and risked going out, I thought a lot about that particular aspect. That if I had to go out due to a timelimit, which I couldn’t honor, it was annoying but fair. Then I knew that it wasn’t about my frogman-mates thinking that you were a burden and it wasn’t about someone don’t wanting the Crown Prince in the corps. Because some didn’t want the Crown Prince in there – didn’t want the reputation of the corps ruined by me. That didn’t happen”, determines Frederik.
But what the Crown Prince is most happy about after his many years and training within the defence is that he in 2001 is being asked whether he would like to be head of the Frogman Corps. But for many reasons Frederik turns down what would have been a dream job, if he hadn’t been born a Crown Prince.
“I was very honored and glad that I was shown that trust, that they believed I had the leadership skills to cope with that post. But to be head of the Frogman Corps must not be a figurehead position or a formal thing. It really demands that you are 100 percent present, because I also as Crown Prince have many official duties and events. Finally with the terrorist attack on the World Trade Centre on the eleventh of September in New York, a heavy upgrade for the special forces took place and in their active participation in combat around the globe.
But it was also about that I was reasonably clear about which way it went for Mary and me. We had met the year before and I knew this was something I had to build on. With all that in mind my military career shouldn’t end in the chief’s chair in the Frogman Corps”.
- This concludes the frogman part of this chapter, and in my opinion a fascinating insight into Frederik’s mindset.
(1) I read about a psychological study sometimes ago in which it was claimed that special forces soldiers and elite athletes are alike in the sense that they will not and indeed cannot realise that something cannot be done. While the rest of us assess the situation and decide that this is beyond our capabillities, something members of special forces and elite athletes have problems comprehending.
It was perhaps epitomised in a documentary where we saw Jægerkorpset (the army special forces) operating in Afghanistan, via their helmet cameras. In order to close in on the Taliban, they at some point waded hip deep in a stream full of urine and feces from both animals and humans. One of them was asked afterwards: “How can you wade through a stream of ****”? The answer was: “Why not”?
(2) As you know the admission test was in October 1994.
That was the end of the Frogman chapter.
Proofread by the indefatigable American Dane.
01-10-2012, 05:03 PM
Extracts from various chapters from the portrait book.
Excerpt from the book: Frederik – Kronprins af Danmark.
Part of pages 166-167.
After a couple of days they turn the Toyota Landcruiser around in order to drive through the rainforest down towards Cooktown, and Frederik turns on the mobile several times and hopes for a connection. Finally after many hours of difficult driving there is hole through to Mary and he tells her about the sight of the sea turtles, the sharks, the crocodiles and tells (her) that he miss her. A Frederik in love promise that that the two of them will see each other again in a couple of days and then Frederik will stay for about a week in Sydney before going home to Denmark. But Frederik has hardly finished the conversation before his mobile rings and on the display he recognises Queen Margrethe’s phone number.
- “My mother called and told me that grandmother (mormor) had become weaker and that I should think about coming home as quickly as possible. Mormor had lived out her life. (*) And then we drove for 24 hours to Sydney in one go and only stopped to fill up with gas on the way. Mary and I had talked about that we should see each other as much as possible in the last days before I was to fly home. I phoned Mary and told her that my mormor was dying and that I had to go home earlier than expected. Mary was of course disappointed but she immediately understood the seriousness and did all she could in the situation to support me”.
With the gas pedal nailed to the floor Frederik and Jeppe drive the more than 2.000 kilometres back with a cloud of dust behind them and the Crown Prince’ two tired bodyguards trailing behind. Frederik and Jeppe take turns behind the wheel while the other sleeps. Finally they get there.
The last evening in the city Frederik and Mary go out for dinner. Just the two of them. Frederik tells Mary about his experiences up north. About the dives at Great Barrier Reef, where the diving instructor’s jaws drop when Jeppe and Frederik say that they both have more than 300 dives under their belts. The instructors think that the Danes are pulling their legs, because they fumble with their civilian diving equipment and put air-tanks and tubes together wrongly. They call Frederik and Jeppe daft cowboys, until they see the two Danish frogmen in the water. Frederik tells about the snakes on the camping sites where Jeppe and he spend the nights and about the rainforest at Cape York. And about his close relationship to his mormor, Queen Ingrid.
- “Then I promised Mary that I would return. She probably thought that this is a pledge he gives to all of them. But I knew deep inside that I would return. The next day I flew back five days before scheduled in the hope of getting home to my mormor”.
No matter whether the flight from Sydney to Copenhagen goes via Singapore or Bangkok it’s 24 hours of exhausting travel across several continents and oceans and with plenty of time to let the thoughts run free. Frederik sees Mary and mormor in front of him. A big life-giving love for Mary has grown within him and at the same time he is losing his beloved mormor. The Crown Prince so dearly wishes to see his mormor again and to take a proper leave with the indispensable support of his childhood and youth.
And he gets home. Frederik drives directly from Copenhagen airport to Fredensborg Slot in order to be with Queen Ingrid in Kancellihuset. They get the quiet morning together alone. Frederik visits his mormor again in the afternoon and also later in the evening.
The next day the ninety years old Queen dies. On Tuesday 7th November 2000 a chapter in Denmark’s history ends. And one of the most important people in Frederik’s life is gone.
- “I actually didn’t tell mormor about Mary. But I knew with myself that it didn’t matter. Because many years ago she told me – very calmly and sweet – that she knew that she wouldn’t meet my chosen one, but she also knew that I would find the right one. As mormor said with that particular calmness and the overview that was hers. So it wasn’t like I felt that I should have whispered as one of the last things that I had met the woman in my life. I wasn’t annoyed about it. Even though I had it in the back of my mind. I didn’t say it – but I think she knew”.
After the burial of Queen Ingrid in Roskilde Cathedral on 14th November Frederik spent the winter-dark nights phoning or mailing Mary in Australia. Getting to know her, exploring her from a distance of 18.000 kilometres. For every phonecall, every mail and every letter he falls more in love.
(*) Very difficult to translate directly. “Mormor’s life was saturated/full”, is the closest thing I can come to a direct translation. An old expression meaning something like: That you have lived your life and it’s time to leave. – Substitute with an expression in your own languages.
Ahh! Wasn’t that sweet?
There are one or two f-words in the book too however. And also more contemporary expressions like “chilling out”. And Frederik describing himself as being on “nature’s acid” while trekking in Greenland.
Excerpt from the book: Frederik – Kronprins af Danmark.
All families experience crisis. For the DRF that happened when Prince Joachim and Princess Alexandra, after almost ten years of marriage, got divorced in April 2005. No matter how a divorce takes place it’s always painful. Especially when there are children.
Prince Joachim is in the middle of his separation and divorce almost at the same time as his brother experiences the love of his life and gets married to Mary. And Joachim chose to spare his love-smitten big brother from this knowledge. Because he will not expose Frederik to such contradictory emotions.
Joachim acknowledge that both the divorce and that being excluded form helping his younger brother has been a big bite (*) for the Crown Prince.
- “The divorce is the total family failure and diametrically opposite a wedding. I believe Frederik had a very difficult time seeing it. Not that I blame him for it. Because how can you see it, when you yourself are in the happiest moment of your life? On the other hand he did realise that it wasn’t an easy decision for me. The biggest decision you make in life is to get married. The second biggest decision is to put children into the world and then there is a bigger decision in between that – and thank god (**) not all face that – that is to end it all. The help he could offer, I would force him (to commit). Because he hasn’t bee through it. And he must not either”.
Instead Joachim elected to go to his nearest friends and with them get support and good advice, even though he knows it frustrates Frederik not being able to offer the help, he would like to give.
- “I kept it very much to myself for good or bad and worker very much on the inside, (***) but where I did seek help from outside was from the closest circle of friends, who have been through it themselves. Could identify themselves (with the problem). But there is a dimension of difference (between him and them) and not least the press. But people who have been through it – no matter whether it has involved flying china or whether it’s polite and nice – know exactly what feelings go through you. So I kept it very much to myself. And perhaps my brother felt a bit cheated/left out because I didn’t share it with him. But perhaps that it was also my way of handling it, when you are in such an unknown situation and doesn’t want to show signs of weakness. I wouldn’t bother him with it, when he was in the happiest circumstances of his life and without possibility of offering experience. I think I disappointed him a lot by not using him more,” acknowledge Joachim.
(*) Expression to be substituted.
(**) Gudskelov. An extremely common expression.
(***) Dealt with it himself.
Short sentences! This book is pure holiday to translate.
Proofread by the incomparable American dane.
01-10-2012, 05:07 PM
Excerpts from the chapter: Kærlighed – Love, from the book Frederik, Crown Prince of Denmark.
Written by Gitte Redder & Karin Palshøj.
(About meeting Mary for the first time).
Frederik: “I really suffered from jet-lag and I was really burned out after finishing a demanding training as a pilot back home. And then I land in Australia, where everybody is very fond of sports and enthusiastic about sports. Sydney was just in party-mood, and everyone was in town to follow the events and cheer the athletes. We quickly got embroiled in the party-commotion and one of my Greek cousins arranged for him and me to go out dining with some of our other cousins(*), who were also there to see the games. Some locals would join us. Mary was one of them”.
Already the day after, after way too little sleep, Frederik feels that he must contact Mary again. Test: whether this was just a fun night on the town or whether it was more than that.
“I called first. There was something special about that girl, I felt, and she wasn’t dismissive either, when I called. So we actually met several times during the Olympic Games and got to know each other better and better.
When Jeppe (Handwerk) and I were ready for our long planned drive north along the Australian coast to Cape York, she waved goodbye. And I actually called Mary all the time. As often as I could and where there was a signal. I couldn’t help it.”
(After having returned to DK, after the death of Queen Ingrid).
That winter at home in Denmark, Frederik’s phone bills had become abnormal, because he constantly called long-distance to Mary. And convince her over time that he really is serious about his pledge to visit her. That he will return at the beginning of the new year.
“I really felt that it was a soul mate. I was drawn to Mary on all fronts. It was fantastic. The beginning was a bit secretive, but very beautiful. If you are to visualize it, it was almost like a summer landscape in moonlight. Tranquil water in a small pond and lots of kindness and beauty. It is like describing a landscape bathed in moonlight. This is how I remember her from the first meeting and it gets better and better, more and more beautiful”. To this day Frederik speaks with a tenderness in his eyes that leaves no one in doubt that his is still smitten/crazy about his Mary.
To the Crown Prince it’s decisive that more than a year passes before the press gets wind of the romance.
“It was enormously good that the press didn’t discover anything and that our love (**) could develop. There were obstacles enough as it was. Not least the distance. But the year that passed before, we decided that something drastic/radical had to happen, we had to ourselves. It was exciting and a really good test to see whether we really wanted each other. Several months passed between us meeting each other. It was hard. It was really hard to live with that want (***). But it was also obvious that for the last month up to our next meeting, we could almost no longer cope with the want any longer. Then the day came, where I flew down to her, or she came to France. Then we rejuvenated that happiness, joy and love and much more. And then we separated and it was terrible to go apart again. It was really a thriller (a shocker). But it was also a good test of our love. Because it quickly dawned on us, that it was not just a blinding crush in connection with the Olympics, which had to recede. Neither of us thought so.
It was easier for me to go to Australia than for Mary to go to Denmark. In Sydney there wasn’t a great interest in me, because I’m no movie star or rock star – and it wasn’t like you were shadowed. During that year we fortunately had some peace to tend to ourselves”.
More later. This book is very easy to translate. It has a good “rhythm”.
(*) Fætre and kusiner.
Forelskelse = in love. The initial crush you go through. Some are fortunate enough to remain in love throughout their lives. For most it (hopefully) develops into something deeper; love.
So that next stage is called: kærlighed, in Danish.
(***) Really missing each other.
Proofread by the magnificent American Dane.
01-10-2012, 05:10 PM
Continuation of the chapter: Love.
The undiscovered dates between the Crown Prince and Mary take place in Porter Street, where Mary lives with others in a charming post-Victorian townhouse from the 1920’s. The quiet Porter Street with the dense rows of Eucalyptus trees, which are so characteristic for Australia, become a haven and hiding place for Mary and Frederik. Here they can ride by bicycle down to the famous Bondi Beach in just a little under ten minutes, go for a swim and end the day with a barbecue on the beach or the local specialty, pizza with pumpkin.
Mary meets Frederik on her home-turf and gets to know him as if he was any other young man. In the unpretentious commune everybody takes turns cleaning, cooking and washing up, and Fred, as he is simply known by Mary’s friends, impresses the other with his skills as a cook and doesn’t mind flagging the dishtowels. Frederik is also introduced to two of Mary’s very best fiends. The mate from her youth and college mate from Tasmania, Hamish Campbell, who later becomes godfather for the little Prince Christian. And the (female) friend Amber Petty, whom Mary knows from Melbourne.
In Sydney Frederik and Mary also spend a lot of time together with the Australian sail-sportsman and real estate manager Chris Meehan and his Danish girlfriend and now wife (formal word), the sail-sportswoman Michaela Ward. The Danish-Australian double romance remains undiscovered by the Danish press, even though it involves an unmarried Crown Prince above the age of 30.
The two couples go sailing together and Chris Meehan and Frederik establish a close friendship. When Frederik visits Sydney, he picks up his sweetheart (*) at Belle Property, where Mary as sales director -- often working long hours. But the employees don’t know that Mary’s sweetheart is a genuine Crown Prince, and neither Mary nor Chris disclose that.
“Frederik also spent a lot of time with some of my friends. I didn’t think it was necessary to tell, neither my employees, nor my acquaintances exactly who he was. And I’m convinced Frederik enjoyed that freedom it was to be perceived as everybody else”, tells Chris Meehan.
During 2001 Frederik and Mary also went on a couple of holidays alone.(**) Mary borrows summer cottages from some friends and abducts Frederik to Australian scenic gems of nature.
“During one of my visits we lived in a small cottage almost up at the border to Queensland, where the climate is sub-tropical, lush and very, very beautiful. During a second visit Mary took me south of Sydney to a beautiful house, next to the beach. We went for long walks along the water, cooked good meals – or rather I cooked, because Mary isn’t that good at it – then we also really got to know each other. It was about laughing and talking, and getting further out into the bush, in regards to each other. Be present for each other”.
The secret love-vacations in Australia are remembered by Frederik down to the last detail. And as Frederik puts it himself, he made no fuss in telling Mary about the Danish Royal House, and what it takes to be a crown princess in the oldest monarchy in the world.
“Not al all. It was more the joy and innocence. She naturally knew who I was. I don’t know how much she had checked me out on the Net – but certainly not enough to find the horror-scenarios. We didn’t talk much about how it was at home and how our parents were, and where we came from. It was more funny things, loving things, as it is in the beginning of a great relationship of love. That thing being in love (***) is being built up. It was really lovely. Innocent, but totally in love. We took very much care of each other and of ourselves. We weren’t to show too much, how much it meant (****), even though we couldn’t hide how fond we were for each other”.
Frederik’s smile is a little shy/awkward at the memory of the difficult act of balance it was to show your love and at the same time hide it, in order not to be too vulnerable.
The love for Mary grows during the first year. Frederik feels a depth, a seriousness and obviousness in regards to his feelings for Mary, which he has never experienced before. He is completely without doubt as to the character of his love.
“It was just everything about her, that I was drawn to. What it was exactly is difficult to say, when I love my wife (informal word) as I do. In the beginning it was her eyes and relatively deep voice and then Mary is an exciting person, but also very responsive”.
In October 2001 Frederik again goes to Sydney in order to enjoy both Mary and the Australian Spring. For thirteen months they have known each other and during Frederik’s two weeklong visits, they decide that Mary should go to Europe. It’s simply unsustainable for the couple in love to settle with seeing each other so rarely. Now their love must pass the big test. To Mary it’s a decision with big consequences to break up from her family, friends and job, but none of them are in doubt that it’s the right thing, when they kiss goodbye on Friday the 9th November 2001.
It will be the last anonymous date between the two of them in Australia. After more than a year’s secret romance the Danish press corps have finally gone into action. Who will be the first in revealing the identity of the sweetheart of the Crown Prince?
Less than flattering methods are used. The gossip magazines sales rise proportionally with royal romance and that’s why Se & Hør (*****) and Billed Bladet put everything in on being the first with the news. Already in September 2001 Se & Hør reveals, to the undivided amusement of Frederik, that his new girlfriend is Belinda Stowell and that she is a gold-medallist at the Olympics in Sydney. After decades with the constant attention of the press, the Crown Prince knows it’s only a matter of days or weeks before the revelation comes, but he and Mary have had a year’s solid lead ahead of the Danish weeklies and still enjoy being able to stroll around in Sydney without curious glances.
That changes three days after Frederik returned home. When Mary Donaldson, on Monday the 12th November in the late afternoon, leaves her office at Belle Property, Anna Johannesen, the Billed Bladet journalist is waiting for her and asks whether she is the sweetheart of the Crown Prince.
“No comment,” replies Mary Donaldson. But a photographer is snapping away and Thursday that same week, Mary ends up on the cover of Billed Bladet, which thereby lives up to it’s slogan: “Denmark’s Royal Weekly”. In one go Mary Donaldson of Belle Property becomes famous in Denmark. The peace and anonymity vanishes forever. Her workplace is put under siege by photographers and journalists, and yes, a Danish gossips weekly hires an Australian free-lance journalist to empty Mary’s waste bins in order to get a look into the shopping habits of the sweetheart of the Crown Prince.
But Mary and Frederik have made up their minds and Mary hands over the lease contract for Porter Street to her roommate Andrew Miles, packs and moves initially to Paris. Closer to Frederik. Now it’ll become a weekend-relationship.
(*) May this charming word never vanish from the English language.
(**) With the usual anonymous gentlemen trailing behind.
(***) Forelskelsen = the initial stages of love. See also note in previous post. – You English speakers really need a few more words in your language…
(****) No, lest you scare her away.
(*****) Which in 2001 still treated its victims, let alone the readers, with some respect.
Proofread by the unceasing American Dane.
01-10-2012, 05:12 PM
Continuation of the chapter: Love.
Already after some months in Paris, Mary Donaldson moves to Copenhagen in the spring of 2002. She gets a job as a project consultant at the IT-giant Microsoft in Northern Zealand and tries to live as normal a life as possible. (She) explores her new city from the saddle of a bicycle and buys groceries at Irma. (1)
“It was good that Mary could stay here in this country as Miss Donaldson, live in her own apartment and have a fine job. I was also busy in the military with a leadership education, (2) so we each had our things to get up for in the morning. We kissed each other in the morning (3) and again in the evening. That entire process was fantastic and again – we didn’t try to rush things. Mary should experience Denmark, the Danes and me, and in many ways she got her own life and network and could go around at Strøget, (4) without anyone spotting her. She was to get to know her country from below and not from the top. We had an everyday-life and built each other up for something, we both felt became better and better. We didn’t directly speak about a wedding, but we felt we were aiming for something. We laid down the keel, as if we were to build a ship and kept on building more and more all the time, so that the boat could float at some point.
It was lovely to have that opportunity to develop us together in my country. It was really the right way to go. It isn’t all a rose garden for someone like us to attract a future partner. Say: “Here you go, we are sweethearts, you have to go to Denmark – I can’t leave my country, you can leave yours”.
Asked directly as to whether he during the first years of them being in love, before the official engagement, thought about whether Mary would be able to handle the difficult and demanding role as crown princess, whether he at any point examined her, Frederik replies at once and unmistakably: “No”!
“It was all about me being crazy/infatuated with this girl, she was my sweetheart. It would be too speculative for me, if I said that I have already selected her for becoming crown princess and to be manipulated in that direction. I really didn’t think like that at all. I thought about what was best for her, and how we could have the best time in Denmark. It succeeded – and if you really want it, and we did, and I in particular, then you can get some time together. Instead of saying: Oh, it’s never possible to go outside, because the press is ready – and it’s here, there and everywhere (5), because then it’s the press who decide our relationship, and that must not be. If you are wild about a girl, then being in love is fortunately way above practical and material considerations. So yes, it was really big,” determines Frederik and reject again that he at any point made a sober assessment at whether Mary was suitable or not as the future crown princess and queen of Denmark.
“But, when you are in love and engaged – and we are still in love – that’s not what decides it. Speaking for myself, if you have a good/solid/adequate experience of life, sensibility and intuition, I don’t have to see and look at her and assess whether she can fit in, in an official function and handle the pressure. You are just pleased that you get something from each other, every day you are together.”
(During 2002 and 2003 the press is tripping from impatience, but M&F will not rush things).
In January 2003 Frederik and Mary travel to Tasmania. The Crown Prince to take part in the world championships in sailing a two-man sailing boat competition (6) with his boat Nanoq. Mary to a loving family visit and play with those nieces and nephews she haven’t seen during that year she has now lived in France and Denmark. At the quay at the port in Mary’s hometown, Hobart, the love-smitten couple for the first time kiss in public. It’s really just a kiss on the cheek, but it becomes a sensation in Denmark. Its like Mary has kissed not only Frederik, but also the entire kingdom and again and again the kiss on the cheek is shown in slow replay on several TV-channels. Editorials are even written about. Such a kiss commits! (7)
“This time it’s a sure thing. The public kiss on Tasmania was the final seal. A Crown Prince cannot run away from that unpunished. The timing was perfect, if not a feat of diplomatic proves by the Crown Prince. He is on Tasmania, the homeland of Mary Donaldson. He cannot publish the engagement here. That naturally has to happen at home in Denmark. But as a gesture, he could here in the hometown of Mary Donaldson, for the first time publicly call her his sweetheart. The next step was the photo session at the harbor, to which he had invited (the press), and where the young ones sealed the connection with the kiss. A future king cannot have a photo like that lying around in photo archives all over the world, if he intends to choose another one as his future something. So what on-the-face-of-it could look like an innocent summer-greeting down there on Tasmania, was really the dress rehearsal for a engagement, which must soon be at hand”, writes Jyllands Posten in an editorial on 21st January 2003. (8)
The Crown Prince explains that the famous kiss on the cheek on the quay in Hobart wasn’t carefully planned – neither to get some peace nor to signal that it was to be them.
As soon as he put his foot on Tasmanian soil, Frederik noted that there was an incredibly lot of Danish press present. “And not to cover the world championships in racing, mind you,” he laughs.
“We were not out to hide or flee or pretend we didn’t know each other. And the harbor was a public place, so we might just as well kiss each other anyway – and then the press will see that as well. Why should I put restrictions on myself when she, whom I love, is standing next to me and why should I pretend we’ve only just met and avoid kissing. Then the press could interpret the kiss as they wanted. But it’s a classic seaman thing to do. When the seaman go out, the wives and later the children where standing to bid farewell and kiss goodbye, because it might be the last kiss. It became so for many seamen, because many never returned. It’s a good thing to kiss. One ought to kiss each other more than you do. Kiss on the cheek, when you leave each other when you leave each other in the morning and say: Have a nice day, and again when you come home. Kiss good day/hello and ask: Have you had a nice day? It’s natural thing to do.” (9)
The proposal tomorrow.
(1) A supermarket chain.
(2) Presumably as a staff officer.
(3) Meaning that she de facto had moved in with Frederik, even though she officially had her own apartment.
(4) The main pedestrian and shopping street in Copenhagen. Tourist trap!
(5) They seek them here, they seek them there.
Those reporters seek them everywhere.
Are they in heaven or are they in… Sorry, got carried away.
(6) Sorry, don’t know what this type of boat is called in English. Doesn’t matter though.
(7) The authors are not exaggerating!
(8) Jyllands Posten is DK’s largest newspaper. It’s a serious newspaper, which doesn’t deal that much in the DRF. Even less back then.
(9) Cannot agree more!
Proofread by the unrelenting American Dane.
01-10-2012, 05:15 PM
Continuation of the chapter: Love.
In the summer of 2003 Frederik writes a long letter to Mary’s father, John Donaldson, who at that time shifted between living Tasmania and in South Korea, where he as a professor in mathematics and is attached to a university in Seoul. In contrast to practically all other men of his generation, Frederik put a lot of emphasis in following the old tradition and ask for permission to marry the youngest daughter of the Donaldson family.
“John was very moved and happy that I, in writing, requested for the hand of his daughter. For me that was just for my right leg (*), that you do such thing. I wrote a nice letter to him and determined that she was the girl in my life, that I was in love in her, and wanted to ask for her hand. And I did emphasize as well that he couldn’t say no. That no matter what he said, I would propose to her.
My father-in-law answered by letter and he was fortunately was happy and thrilled, delighted that I would enter his family. He looked forward to see the two of us together. He also emphasized in the letter that Mary’s mother would have been glad to know, that Mary had found me. It was really neat to mention that as well”.
The Crown Prince reveals his romantic gene in a carefully planned proposal to his chosen one. Since he is only to propose once in his life, he might just as well do it with style. Mary and Frederik have often talked about how they would like to experience Italy, Rome, together and they have several times spoken that it really is a shame that they haven’t experienced the historical and cultural attractions which Rome has to offer. As such Frederik suggests to Mary that go on a mini-vacation to Rome in September.
“The late summer was nice and warm and it was unreal to walk around the streets of Rome. We sucked it all in and were at Peter’s Square (**) and in the Cathedral of Saint Peter. I had decided that I would propose to Mary in Rome and (I) had also organized an engagement ring, and made sure that I could be completely alone with her. It was just a complete success. Not because I wanted to go down on my knee, which I did, that’s the right way to do it. And then I just said: You cannot say no, you must not say no, you simply have to say yes. And then she said yes, and it was lovely and blissful. We were happy and just the two of us,” smiles Frederik and adds that the proposal took place in English.
Later that same day the Crown Prince phones home from Rome to the Chief of Court, Per Thornit. The Chief of Court is told that he can put the whole thing on alert now and issue a statement to the press about a royal engagement.
“Despite us not having returned home, a press release was issued about the engagement and that the engagement would take place in October. It was good (***) that we didn’t go straight back home to a curious press. We stayed in Italy for four or five days more and went to a great hotel at the Adriatic some hours by car from Rome. It was nice to enjoy the engagement that way.”
In the Yellow Mansion (****) in Amalie Street, a stones throw from Amalienborg, Court Marshall Ove Ullerup and Per Thornit get busy. On Wednesday the 24th September they issue a brief statement to the press: “Hofmarskallatet (*****) informs that Her Majesty the Queen in the State Council scheduled to take place Wednesday the 8th October 2003 at 10.00 o clock in the residence at Amalienborg, intends to approve that His Royal Highness the Crown Prince enter a state of matrimony with consultant, Miss Mary Elizabeth Donaldson”. (******)
The second the press release is issued to Danish media, radio and television is interrupted with the message of the royal engagement. The bridal couple-to-be has like vanished from the face of the Earth and no one suspects they are enjoying each other at the Adriatic and thus don’t face the media-commotion at home. Because commotion it is. Papers and TV-stations call forth historians and royal experts to assess the significance of the marriage of the Crown Prince for the future of the monarchy. Oh yes, the engagement-ecstasy afflicts everyone. Finally, our Crown Prince has sailed into harbor, to the cheers of the Danes and in the editorial Berlinske Tidende (*******) praises the future Crown Princess as insurance for the Danish people’s monarchy.
Big words about Mary, who has never yes said a word in Danish in full public glare.
- If you think you can handle more romance, I’ll have a look later at what M&F said about each other in the book.
(*) A soccer expression. = Something that is obvious/the right thing/the perfect thing/you want to do/just ready for you to do.
(**) The large square at the Vatican, not sure if this is also the name in English.
(***) Frederik is here using the word: “Dejligt”, rather than “good”. Both words can be translated to good, but in this context the meaning is different. Here it means it was good, in a positive sense, that, the news broke when they were still in Rome. Had he used the word “godt”, it would in this context be like rolling the eyes way back in the head.
(****) The location of the DRF central administration.
(*****) The actual name of the central administration. Which is headed by the Court Marshall.
(******) Notice that all such official statements are written as one sentence. Also known as Kancellistil = Chancellery Style.
(*******) Berlinske Tidende is a major conservative newspaper, and very serious.
Proofread by the unperturbed American Dane.
01-10-2012, 05:16 PM
Various quotes from the chapter: Kærlighed – Love.
“To Frederik it’s love for the rest of the life. He considers it utterly impossible to be divorced. It doesn’t exist in his worldview! It’s a choice he has made and it’s the right choice for the rest of the life. He doesn’t view divorce as an option, as for everybody else. That’s why he also invests time, energy and love in their marriage.
Mary can do something Frederik cannot and visa versa and the supplement each other well. Mary is structured and he creative. They can different things. Frederik could from the start tell that she had something to offer, which he needed by his side – because it’s hard work in their little business and he was in doubt that it was her”.
Frederik: “We probably thought we were more alike. But the difference is fantastic, in the sense that we gain a lot from that. We discuss and we talk when we are in disagreement. Where are we alike? We are alike because we love each other, and because we are both so fixed on the home ground/our base. We are both attentive of our inner self and our little nucleus, which is now growing, because we have had children. And life as such. We have some goals and we set some partial-goals together. We are fundamentally in agreement about what we want and the way our ship must sail. We are also alike, because we respect each other”. (*)
His view on their marriage:
“It’s great, it’s lovely. It keeps developing. We multiply. There are new roads all the time. It’s lovely, that’s it”.
Mary about their marriage:
“If I should use one word about my marriage, it’s happiness. It’s very happy. And lovely. We have a very open and honest marriage, where we provide a sparring partner and room. We have common interests, but we also have individual interests. And it’s very important to have your own interests. So there is a time, when you depart and learn something new and return with new exciting experiences. I think it’s important to give each other room, and we do”, says Mary and after a little thoughtful moment she comes up with a big smile and adds: “We are just happy and in love and love what we have together – the children and life. The love I feel for Frederik is always in my heart, in my soul and my body. Now that I also see him with the children, love has gained new dimensions. Of course there are challenges and obstacles on the way, but we’ll figure that out. We are good together”.
Mary goes on about Frederik: “Frederik is incredibly loving and caring and incredibly loyal. These are very important traits. And I also love his energy. He is always full of energy and then I love his attitude towards life. He is a very positive person, and he really understands what is important to have as priorities in life. He has a really good humor. That means that he is nice to be with and laugh with. Frederik curiosity is also big. He always wants to figure our why things work the way they do. And that can tease/cause him problems from time to time. (**) There is curiosity about everything, and that’s great.
Frederik is a very intelligent person. He has experienced much and is willing to share that experience of life that he has. Frederik is very multi-facetted. He is both delicate/sensible and strong. In the sense that everything he cares for – family and friends – he is very delicate/sensible about. Like we all can be. And in the other hand, he can be really strong and really fight for what he believes in and for those he cares for. We have all seen Frederik being delicate/sensible and I consider that as being something very positive, that he is willing to show that he is an emotional person”.
At the home of the Crown Princely couple the ceiling is high in more than one way. And room in the heart for teasing.
“Mary certainly contradicts me, if she believes I’m wrong. I can of course become irritated over that and ask why she can’t see it from my point of view. But Mary is very calm. That’s one of the many good bonds there are between us. Mary never lets my words just hang in the air – they are always grasped and thrown right back in my face. That’s how it should be”, believe Frederik.
The Crown Princess admits laughingly that she rarely lets Frederik’s words hang in the air.
“It’s within me to ask questions about everything. And I try to see the situation from all angles and how you can defend and present it. (***) I try to play against my husband and try to get into why he wants to do it, (****) what significance it has and asks whether he has really thought it through. It can perhaps be a bit irritating sometimes, that I ask so many questions, but Frederik is doing the same ting to me”. (*****)
After having met Mary in Sydney and on the way to Cape York, Frederik thought he could hide his feelings for his friend; Jeppe Handwerk:
“Hush, hush. And he tried to slip away without me noticing it. I quickly figured out it was serious and that he had some emotions for her, which was different. He had butterflies in his belly and they talked a lot on the phone during the drive. Mary was a quite ordinary girl and Frederik was quite a bit turned on by that. He was clearly in love in her all during the drive to Cape York and (he) was very interested in getting to say goodbye to Mary, before he -- head over heels -- had to go home. And when he came home to Denmark, he sometimes fell asleep by the phone when he talked to her”, laughs Jeppe handwerk.
- And this concludes the pre-engagement part of this chapter.
Frederik, Kronprins af Danmark – Frederik, crown Prince of Denmark was written by Gitte Redder & Karin Palshøj.
The book was published by Høst & Søn = Hoest & Son. Isbn #978-87-638-0307-6 in case you wish to plaque the publishers for an English edition.
(*) Yep, once heard the best possible advise to a good marriage I’ve had: Treat your wife with same respect, tolerance, attention and loyalty as you would treat your very best friend.
(**) As in not being able to put the washing machine back together, because you just had to figure out the problem….
(***) You assess the issue for a few minutes and figure out at way to deal with it. That’s the way to do it!
Your wife on the other hand needs to discuss every single aspect of the issue for six or seven hours! After which she reach the exact opposite conclusion of yours. – And that’s the way it will be done!
Frederik will learn eventually…
(****) As in analyzing every single possible motive you have in not being in complete agreement with her. – Also a couple of years after, you debated the issue! At way too late in the evening!
Which is why you always end up agreeing with your wife….
Frederik will eventually learn….
(*****) Mistake, Frederik! You just nod and grunt a bit and look thoughtful, and she’s happy.
And that was the end of that chapter.
Proofread by the dedicated American Dane.
(A number of previous posts will now be deleted).
01-10-2012, 08:49 PM
Oh my gosh, I have read this before but I enjoyed it as much as the first time I read it. Thank you so much Muhler and your side-kick American Dane. A pity this book was never published in English.
01-11-2012, 12:16 PM
Yes indeed, a lot of editing work has been done by American Dane following on from the translating and paraphrasing work done by Muhler.
Originally Posted by Muhler
These are proofread versions of previous posts.
American Dane has very kindly and very patiently edited out various grammatical mistakes made by me.
A big "thank you!" to both for the time and effort involved in making the interesting parts of the book accessible to members.
The only downside is that with the original posts now removed, replies to them have little context. However, those replies have not been taken out and remain in the thread; any discontinuity is a small price to pay for what is a very informative and enjoyable read.
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