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Trains, Bombs, and Automobiles

6 Dec

Excitement at the Bella Centre…

Two of us, I and a friend from the UofT delegation, left early to get our badges and transit passes for the conference.  As we got to the venue we were stuck outside in a crowd and the entrance and surrounding areas were cordoned off with police tape.  The conference doesn’t even start until tomorrow, and Obama doesn’t arrive until Tuesday, and yet there was a bomb squad and hyperactive dog circling the area: there was a mysterious package that arrived less than an hour before.  The security told us to wait, however since it could have meant waiting an hour in the freezing cold (and in a growing mob), we decided to hop back up onto the train. So we waited a few minutes until the train arrived, found a seat in the crowded car, and waited for the doors to close.  Nothing happened.

About five minutes later we were yelled at, in Danish, to get off the train.  Shortly after that they yelled at us all again, to the frustration of most since we pretty much all came from outside Denmark.  So, I proactively yelled “Can you speak ENGLISH”, to which the reply was “Yes I can, GET DOWNSTAIRS!”  Thus, both we and whoever came in on the transit from both directions were again added to the mob.  We still had time left to use the same ticket, and so we walked about 3km to the nearest train station and took it to the Central Station, where we’d transfer to the train that would take us to our hotel.  Of course, not only were we stuck in shelter with smokers (apparently perfectly legal in Denmark), but the train was out of service, so a five-minute wait became 20.  Needless to say, after this we had no problem paying the $30 equivalent for a cab to get to the docked ship that would be our accommodations for the next 13 days.