Copenhagen: Day 4
Christmas Eve! A famously good day to go with family to visit museums, stroll parks, and go on long bus journeys.
My day begins, as most my days do, by walking. Back to museum island. The streets are nearly deserted. I see a few Asians and hear Ukranian and American English from the few people I pass. Passing Tivoli I am surprised to find that it is closed. I would have thought families would love to go to the amusement park after getting presents. What kind of capitalist society is this?
I stretch through the gate to take a photo, as do the few other people huddled around. There are many Christmas lights and decorations. The park must be beautiful when lit-up at night. I make a note to re-visit the park on my return trip to Sweden.
Onwards to museum island but blast, all the museums are shuttered. I am getting a sneaking suspicion that this city closes down and lets all the faithful relax with family. Well, if anywhere is open in a Western country on a holiday it will be the main shopping street. To Strøget!
Finally! A few people mulling about and a few shops open. One cafe, some kebab houses, and Max! I'll have to come back for lunch. There is nothing here for me at the moment though so to some new places I haven't been.
A short walk brings me to Rosenborg Castle. Here be the Danish crown jewels and much more, but obviously it is closed under lock and key today. All I get to see are two soldiers lazily walking the grounds.
I putter around a bit more. Enjoying the gardens and passing other museums such as the SMK - Statens Museum for Kunst. I am simply a lost wanderer at this point in time with no direction and no goal. My feet carry me to Ørstedsparken, a pretty park with hardly a soul inside. I might have been fully mistaken thinking families come out on Christmas Eve.
Enough walking. I'm bored and frozen. To Max for lunch! Turn the corner and.....closed! It is only 14(2pm)! Oh well, Max isn't worth banging on the door or breaking the glass trying to get in. Plus there is another one at the train station. Surely the train station shops stay open on Christmas Eve for the travellers. 30 minutes later and it is open! I walk in and an employee tells me that they are closing so I cannot order. I consider attacking him so that I can quickly place my order on the machine, but again, it hardly seems worth it. I'm also low on energy since I cannot find any food and unsure if I can overpower this employee.
McDonald's next door is my last resort, and judging by the queue, everybody elses as well. After a delicious meal it is back to the hotel to wait five hours for my overnight Flixbus to Amsterdam.
I order a gluhwein and start-up a conversation with an extremely well dressed British family. His accent is fantastic. They help pass the time but leave to get ready for Christmas dinner. I head upstairs to the game room. There is a ping pong table and some boardgames but I am alone and my imaginary friend left me long ago. Something I will never forgive him for but I won't get into it here.
After a nap I head back down to the cafe. It is closed and the staff are switching out. It will be one pour soul working alone for Christmas. She comes over and we have a great chat. She offers me a drink even though the cafe is closed. I would love a red winee to help me sleep on the bus but for a reason unknown to me my mind asks for a green tea. More time passes and she stops to chat when she doesn't haven't anything else to do. It is a very nice ending to my time in Copenhagen.
Time to leave for the bus. I say goodbye and Merry Christmas and walk again to the train station. It takes me a while to find where Flixbus stops and when I do the happiness I was feeling at the hotel dwindles. This is a shady area. The heaps of trash and guy peeing on the fence really add to the atmosphere. I would ask why bus stops and stations are always so shady but it would be rhetorical, as I know the answer. Oh well, it was only a fifteen minute wait.
The bus is fairly empty. I paid extra for the front seat on the top deck. It was a mistake. this seat is only for the panorama view. There is no legroom and the seat doesn't recline. Also it is right above the drivers so I can hear their music and conversations. After the first stop I move to one of the normal rows. At the stop after that I get kicked out as that seat is taken by someone else so I move to another empty row. We leave Hamburg with nobody kicking me out and since it is non-stop to Amsterdam from here I am good to go. Getting sleep is a different matter though. The seats are uncomfortable, the lights from passing cars annoying, and of course there is always noise from people's smartphones(Headphones and blindfold mostly fix the latter, but not completely). Is it really so difficult to find the silent button and use headphones? Flixbus needs to take a lesson about long-distance busses from Chile. The busses there are incredibly comfortable(in first class obviously). I'll pay to be comfortable!
Merry Christmas and next stop, Amsterdam!