Guiding down Göteborgs canals


This morning I woke up after four hours of sleep. Finishing job by midnight last night, the train home taking almost two hours and I had to get up at six am to shower, eat and head for the train to Gothenburg.

I was walking the streets in Göteborg (which somehow the Englishmen has renamed to Gothenburg) and thinking about what to do. With no money to spend and three hours to go before the bus to the airport would leave there was not much to do. I sat down on the lion steps, looking at the water in the canal and the boats going pass. A boat with some tourists came up and some people got off, a couple came on. Another company had their boats filled with people, I’ve heard stories about them from other cities, how they conquer the canals and for some reason the tourists loves them. I’m not sure why.
The guide got off the boat and said hello. “Hello” I replied.
“Aren’t you getting on?” he asked, I shook my head. “No, I have no money.”
He looked at me, gave me half a smile. “Come on, don’t be like that. You should come.” I looked at him and thought for myself, how can I? The little money I have I need to save for France and Spain, no one knows what’s gonna happen on the road. I have a daily budget of 10 euro, this boat trip alone should cost at least eight euro. “How much does it cost?” I asked him.
“For you… it costs…..” he scratched his chin with his fingers and looked as if he was thinking really hard. “…free. Come on now, get on.”
“Seriously?” I asked, he started walking towards the boat and waved for me to come along.
So, I jumped onto the tourist boat and got a free one hour guided tour along the canals of Göteborg. The guide name was Filip, he has worked with the guiding since may. I enjoyed my time sitting there, water splashing over the (reling?) bringing me to defend myself against the cold sea water holding my hands in front of me trying to block the worst splashes. There were about ten other people on the boat, some Swedish, a German couple and two Chinese. Fillip had a microphone and told us about the feskekyrka (the fish church, fiskkyrka in Swedish but with the Göteborg-dialect it’s feskekyrka). It’s one of the most famous spots in Göteborg. The fisher-men used to sell their fish outside, but eventually someone made a building for them. The bulding looks very much like a church, so that’s why it’s called the fish church.

After the guided boat ride I walked back to the station and got on the airport-bus. It was still a couple of hours before the boarding would start, so I lay down in the grass outside and slept for an hour. Well needed sleep.


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