1863Boredom and Ovation
Departs from Glorup, travelling via Nyborg-Korsør and Korsør-Århus to Friisenborg.
8th - 19th July
At Friisenborg, where he is the guest of Count C.E. Krag-Juel-Vind-Frijs and Countess Thyra (the count later becomes prime minister). Amongst the other guests are the painter Thorald Læssøe (son of HCA's old motherly friend Signe Læssøe) and his wife Emy, who is the sister of the estate owner.
HCA does paper-cuttings and is photographed. Has a long discussion about religion with the countess (16th).
Via Århus-Korsør to Basnæs.
To Skælskør, from there to Slagelse and by train to Roskilde. Stays with Dean Søren Ortwed until the 10th.
Return to Copenhagen, where boredom sets in almost immediately. Boredom is, on the whole, a significant factor during the last 10-15 years of his life, as a result of his declining literary activity. HCA is the type of writer who is very dependent on inspiration, and this seemed to present itself less often, or was more difficult to come by, during the later years, cf. the story two years later called "Lygtemændene ere i Byen, sagde Mosekonen" (The Will-o'-the-Wisps are in Town).
This boredom partly explains the restless travel activity and the rushing around to all manner of events, whenever he finally is at home. Together with actual illness, concern about the way society was developing and the national crises, HCA's boredom during these years is also part of the reason why he experiences an mounting feeling of desperation, weariness of life, hypochondria and emotional unbalance.
Another likely factor contributory to this state of ill health is his growing consumption of alcohol, which is, however, also related to sexual frustrations. After a period of relative balance, the issue of repressed sexuality once again surfaces as a distressing factor.
HCA's considerable consumption of wine, beer and other alcoholic beverages is presumably highly significant for the cancer of the liver that was diagnosed as the cause of his death.
Starts to frequent the home of the Melchior family, who he had met earlier on several occasions and also corresponded with.
The friendship with the ballet dancer Harald Scharff subsides:
"Scharff's infatuation for me is now over, 'now the glance of the hero is enchanted by some other object'. I am not actually saddened by this, as was the case earlier with similar disappointments"
(the diary, 27th August).
Writes in the diary on the 13th:
"Eating and drinking are what I note as that which gives cohesion, unity. Gone are the spirit and freshness of youth", and on 16th: "I am not satisfied with myself. I can not stand the loneliness, am tired of life and living".
Regarding Scharff, HCA notes after a visit from him on 13th November 1865, after HCA has returned home from Sweden: "he is a butterfly, fluttering about in sympathy".
Attends the 3rd anniversary of the New Workers' Association. Here he receives an ovation for his readings. Feels embarrassed by the ovation:
"thought about all my human weaknesses and felt it was all almost a joke"
(the diary, same day).