The Little Mermaid will be returning home later this month after a six-month vacation in China. I don’t know if she’s going to miss the place but her imminent return reminded me of my own stay in Denmark coming to an end, sooner than I would like.


In the Hans Christian Andersen story, the Little Mermaid traded in her fish tail for a pair of legs in the hope of seducing a human prince in order to gain an immortal soul. She fails miserably but through an interesting loophole in the Maritime Magic Legislation, she gets another shot at gaining a soul in the service of the air goddess. Or something. It’s a bit technical.


My own aspirations are somewhat less ambitious. For me an extended stay in Copenhagen will do just fine. The problem is that I too am running out of time. As a third year BA student I really ought to be thinking about graduating soon. To do that I really should return to Estonia as soon as possible, which is almost as tragic as the potential of disintegrating into foam was for the Little Mermaid. At the very least, both I and the Little Mermaid are struggling with terminality.


Currently I’m also looking for an excuse to stay for a little while longer and I think I have found a way.


On my first year I failed the “Introduction to Sociology” course in Tallinn. Because I did not wish take the same exam again, on the account of the professor having been a bit of a dick, I was caught in an unfortunate situation. In Tallinn, if you don’t pass an exam within a year of the courses completion you must pay in order to take it again at a later time. At least if you wish to take the course in Tallinn. I, however, am in Copenhagen.


I have sent an e-mail to my home university inquiring if I could escape this financial burden by taking a similar course at the Copenhagen University. If this worked, I could benefit from it not only financially, but also in terms of time – in Tallinn I would have to wait until autumn before I can enroll in the course again. Whether the course will be available at the Copenhagen University during the spring term however, is another question altogether. Still, it’s worth a shot.


Looking at the Little Mermaid affair, it seems now like I’m shoehorning the story to fit my own experience. Nevertheless, both the Little Mermaid and I were racing against the clock. My deadline for applying for extension is November 18th and if I want to stay in Copenhagen, I must find a way to do so without prolonging my studies beyond a reasonable time frame.


So, the Little Mermaid sort of succeeded in getting an extension. Or wait, no, she turned to air. If I don’t get an extension I will return to Tallinn. Which is almost equal to turning into foam. I mean air. Unlike staying in Copenhagen, which is equal to gaining immortality. Immortality for five months. Hmm.


Fairy tales are hard. Or maybe I should just re-take the semiotics course as well, seems as I have learned nothing.