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Mermaid keeps them guessing

2010. 7 June

by John Honeywell
( Even though the the Little Mermaid's holiday in China has been widely reported, there were still lots of disappointed faces in Copenhagen yesterday among hundreds of people turning up at her rock on the sea shore.

There were four cruise ships in port; P&O's Azura was joined by MSC Orchestra, Costa Atlantica, and Iberotour's Grand Mistral.

That's an awful lot of passengers in town when, because the Danish nation was celebrating Constitution Day, the local populace was picnicking in the parks and almost all the shops were shut.

The Little Mermaid would have been the big attraction - if she hadn't been packed off to Shanghai as the centrepiece of Denmark's stand at Expo 2010.

There is a tiny - almost invisible - model on the rock where she normally sits, and a video screen standing in the water showing larger-than-life images beamed by webcam from China (above).

But I still heard one woman saying to her companion: "She must be around here somewhere, they've got models of her on sale all over the place."

I'm not sure if she, or Hans Christian Andersen, would have appreciated the alternative mermaid now standing very proudly on the quayside at the Langelinie cruise berth (left).