I was in Copenhagen for a family vacation earlier this week. It was unbearably hot, as is London right now. So, I don’t know if it was just the heat that had everyone worked up but in so many ways, I could hardly relate to the things I saw.
We had taken this 3 day tourist pass that allowed us to board trains, busses and ferries through our time there. People had recommended the Canal tour as it was supposed to be like in Amsterdam/ Venice, but we passed as it seemed to wannabe. Instead, we decided to board the ferry and randomly explore. After waiting 20min, we boarded a ferry, and decided to get off randomly at some stop to take a ferry back in the opposite direction. Except, when the ferry arrived, the conductor of the boat came out and said he had a limit on the number of people he can take on the boat and he had a ticker to count. We were about 15-20people waiting, and he let everyone board the ferry except us. He had stopped counting on his ticker after the first couple of people.
Now, at first we thought, oh well bad luck, but some part of me felt like it was discrimination. Maybe I felt this way because just the previous evening, there had been protests around Copenhagen against the recent burqa ban. So I naturally felt like the place might not be very open minded afterall. I know, law of small numbers and all that but you know how the human mind is irrational with these things. Anyway, the husband and i argued about what it was all about and then gave up once we found a place to lunch at. Sigh.
The same evening, we were in a bus on our way to dinner when we witness a black woman and an asian woman fight. Both women had kids with them but that didnt stop either of them from letting the heat get the better of them. The incident started because the black woman pushed her way into the bus tumbling the asian women and her children over to which the asian woman said something to the effect of stop pushing. The black woman retorted saying that people push in a crowded bus and that was life. From there it went on to the black woman calling the asian woman’s husband a pussy for trying to but in to end the argument. The details are quite silly, ugly and unnecessary but the point was that there was so much intolerance among two people who clearly didn’t belong to the place and you would have expected them to be more open or flexible, but sadly that wasn’t the case.
I felt sad, I felt bad that there was so much hatred in the world for no good reason. Maybe Ive been fortunate to not witness such things in London, maybe thanks to the British way of handling things? I am not going to say there isn’t any intolerance here but surely its far less blatant. Luckily, i also met a lot of local people on the train who were very friendly and it took me by surprise after what i’d seen in the first day or two. I would imagine that people in cold countries are warmer because they need that sense of community and warmth when there is little else during winters.
Talking about winters, i wondered how depressing living in Copenhagen during the winter would be because the Area in which we stayed was fairly residential and you could look into peoples homes through your windows and it was a in a strange way the only form of entertainment in the darkness. If you think looking into peoples homes through windows is creepy enough, i found a man opposite us use a binocular to look into peoples’ homes. Beat that! So yeah, Copenhagen was a very strange experience for me, but totally worth the visit.