Engineers Gitte and Kore love having friendly people around them and the pleasent atmosphere of the oldest city in scandinavia with their family, friends - and the whole world - at their fingertips.
The basement has a great playroom for both adults and children with room for a billiard table, chill-out zone and Kore’s great interest in classic cars, currently three Porsches and a Jaguar E-type.
“I am mad about cars from the 1960s and 70s and I love just messing around with them. It’s a kind of therapy,” explains Kore who was born and brought up in Aarhus, but has fallen in love with the area and scenery of the Wadden Sea.
“In the summer, of course, it’s great having both Rømø and Mandø close by – I really de-stress when I am on Rømø.”
To Gitte, Ribe is the country of her childhood. But she studied to be an export engineer in Horsens for five years and has lived in the United Kingdom both during her work experience and her MBA studies. She has also lived in Tønder for six years. In 2003, she returned to Ribe to work as a sales manager in the family-owned business Logitrans which develops and manufactures internal transport equipment.
Kore is a trained machine operator and mechanical engineer and his career has taken him to Esbjerg and Haderslev. Later, through a partnership with DIS, he became partner and manager of a new office in Esbjerg in 2011.
THEY HAVE BEEN AROUND, BUT WHY DID THEY END UP CHOOSING RIBE?“In my case, it was the family-owned company and having my parents nearby that were important to me – with small children that was an important factor,” explains Gitte.
“And the people are great – I know people in town while in cities like Horsens and Aarhus you are more anonymous. This may be fine once in a while, but in everyday life I think it’s important to have friendly people around.”
The move has also been a success for Kore. “It has been great to move down here and I enjoy what Ribe has to offer. It is really inviting. We walk around the Old Town or go for a run along Ribe River and out to the Castle Bank,” says Kore who also enjoys the local cultural scene.
“I think I go to more cultural events in Ribe. This may sound odd, but there is a great cultural scene in Ribe.”
And even though it may seem far between Copenhagen and Ribe – especially seen from the capital – the whole world is very close. “It only takes 50 minutes for us to go to Billund Airport. Flying to London costs the same as driving to Copenhagen. Life doesn’t stand still because you move to Ribe,” laughs Gitte and suddenly thinks of a couple of funny examples:
”The last three times I had my hair cut were in Monaco and the United States. And one Tuesday evening we went for a trip to Hamburg. Kore needed to pick up a component for the car so we decided to have dinner down there. Flensburg is also great and sometimes we go to Aarhus on a Saturday,” she says.
“If you just expand your horizon a bit, you get really far. I really believe that you actually become less adventurous if you live in a big city.”
The framework is right. For an active family life, but also for the peace and tranquillity to balance a busy life with a demanding job. The engineering couple Gitte Kirkegaard and Kore Berg and their four children have found happiness in the city of Ribe. Everything just fell into place.
“The most important thing is that our day-to-day life works and everything is possible in Ribe. We both have demanding jobs so it means a lot to be able to come home to a nice house with room enough to do what you want. That is one of the opportunities you have when you decide to live outside the big cities,” say Gitte and Kore who are 39 and 41 respectively.
Their home is a very spacious four-storey villa with 380 square metres of living space in a pleasant area just outside the centre of Ribe – only ten minutes’ walk from the medieval city. Ribe offers room for both body and soul. Both the four children from different marriages and lots of guests – e.g. friends arriving from Aarhus with a carload of children.
WHAT IS THE BEST PART OF LIVING HERE?Gitte: “I think it is the friendliness – I like having good people around me. I don’t need 1,000 friends, but I think it is great to be able to pop over to a neighbour and have a cup of coffee. It’s just not the same in a big city.”
Kore: “It is also important to me to have friendly people around me and to be able to go for a lovely walk and just completely de-stress. It is a different kind of tranquillity and relaxation you get here.”