Monday 26 March 2012: Exotic-ism
I woke up this morning to the distant bells of the tram on the Vastra Hamngatan street, or the west harbor street. The street is one of the main attractions of the city, and is closest to the harbor, and to the shopping center of the city. Through the 5 degrees centigrade chill in the morning, I could observe how the footpaths were in line with the road, and how wide they were, which explained why people preferred walking, or biking wherever they go. The usual hustle bustle of cars on the main street I've been seeing over the past one year was missing.
The sumptuous breakfast and last night forceful sleep meant that I was up and running the whole day. The office was fully laced with architecture, along with all the other buildings adjacent and beyond it. The wind chill from the nearby water body did not deter people from walking along the streets, neither it did to me when I was outside.
I could observe the small lanes and bylanes that ran through the buildings, and the small shops and malls that were adjacent them. I saw the flags of various countries being strung together by a rope and being tied as a welcome sign in front of every street. In the evening as the sea gulls took charge to get rid of the silence in the air, and the echos of laughter from friends in a closed lane booming across in different directions, with the chugging of the trams at the background, I could see that people here go home early. The shops closed by 7-8 PM, and the odd kissing couple on the bench along the park under the streetlight, and the empty umbrellas outside the small bar, was the only exceptions. People were running to catch the bus, people were talking in the restaurants in loud conversations, people speaking a language I couldn't understand a word of, and I did understand that they were all happy.
This isn't a hustle bustle city. And from what I understand, this isn't a hustle bustle country. I was told today that in most of the cities across Europe, you have just the concept of just one main street for the city, and everyone flock there to do their shopping. Now that is something that really is different. And moreover, who needs all that shopping and lavish spending when you have such exotic-ism to ponder over ?
Dinner at a nearby restaurant was sumptuous. Looking forward for Stockholm tomorrow.