Tuesday, May 27, 2008

What a Waste of Bomb Threath

Today I finished my work and was planning to take the train, go near Amsterdam Arena and go to see Indy4 (No, not the Fate of Atlantis, but the movie. Crystal skull thingie... I guess there's 13 of them. Ssssh... don't tell me anything about it. Don't want to know before I see it.) Of course the train was late. So was the next one. And one train had stopped right after the station. Something was wrong.

Then I heard there was a bomb threat at Central Station of Amsterdam. I got all exited. To the city centre it is! Panic, chaos and most likely a false alarm! And I had my camera! (Plus, if something would happen, I know first aid. And as a medic in the army we kinda learned how to quickly temporary fix big holes in people.) But how to get there? Bus to Schiphol? Naw, too full and how to get to centre from there?

Finally, after 30mins of waiting, got to train that goes to Amsterdam Zuid, where I was not going. But good enough. Can switch to metro and then to tram and go to city centre. And to Central Station. My ticket wasn't towards there, but that was the only train that wasn't gonna go through city centre, thus it was moving. Got off at Zuid.

But the Dutch are sometimes so Dutch that I have hard time describing how Dutch they are. Of course there was absolutely no information why the trains were not going. But that's normal. If a train is 20 minutes late and another train comes, it is usual not to inform about it and daily there are people in wrong trains. This time it was even more Dutch than that.

Got off from the train, and of course they had put ticket check on the station. Three passages, two guys in each passage, except one of them had only one guy. I though I just explain to the guy that the trains were not going so I took a wrong train. As I was going, the guy in front of me had the same story. Boy that ticket inspector had a devilish smile when he started to ask the guy's ID. But, just the right moment for me to just wave the ticket of mine and pass. The guy was so concentrated on ... ehm ... making the other guy bend over and giving it to him unlubricated that he didn't pay any attention.

I thought that was a bit odd. Considering all trains were on halt because of a bomb threat. But I still paid my metro ticket and was going to the stop. Of course there was the metro company's inspectors! Are you friggin' kidding me? During a friggin' bomb threat they make sure no-one explodes without a proper ticket! Lucky me, I got the ticket.

I saw police officers on the pier where I was waiting, so I asked them what was going on.
- A delay, but it's over.
- Yeah, but what's the reason.
- Just a delay.
- Ok, I heard a rumour that there was a bomb threat.
- Oh, that one... yeah, just a small luggage that was left unattended but it is gone now.

Yeah, thanks for informing the public. Especially if it was a false alarm, and I would read it from tomorrow's paper anyways. I guess you can't trust anyone who's title starts with "Poli". Got to my metro, and surprise, surprise! Ticket inspectors came from the next stop! To a packed metro! Do they enjoy pain? Just what I need when I am crammed into a sardine-tin and have some lady's elbow, size of a Christmas ham, in my mouth.

And all of this because some tourist forgot his luggage on the friggin' pier when he jumped to train to Schiphol. And so very Dutch, who think they are a world-wide power, to think that someone really would like to bomb Central Station. Who? Terrorists? They friggin' live in Amsterdam and their families need the train to go to work! And what kind of message would that be? Dutch soldiers in Middle-East, so we kill a lot of tourists and our own people? Get serious.

Den Haag would be more suitable target anyways for political attack. It's not like there is any separatist movement in the Netherlands to whom an attack on civilians would be of any help.

* Was late coming from work. (But that's more of a rule anyways with NS.)
* No info why the trains were late. (That is their code-of-silence at NS, so it's normal also.)
* Three friggin' times I was checked for the ticket during a friggin' bomb threat.
* And there wasn't even a bomb, but Dutch egoism since they can't see they are not as big and bad as some other countries who are the invading hordes in the Middle-East.

Plus it feels like thunder is coming, so it's moist, hot, pressurised and sweaty.

But I guess it was a good thing the threat was a false alarm and no-one was hurt. I still wanted those pictures.


Daniela said...

Hi there,
loved your rant! I actually got stranded on platform 13a for the duration of the alarm. Great fun! The first time I tried to enter the station there was this cute little alarm and nobody cared... that is until the police and some kind of security made everybody leave the station. Then a couple of minutes later we were allowed back in. All good fun. So I made my way to platform 13a and since the board said that my train was delayed by 15 minutes I settled in for a little wait. 30 minutes later the information board went blank and the police started blocking the stairs. There were announcements made via the speaker system... but since my dutch is sketchy at best... I didn't understand a whole lot. So I went and asked a police - woman (whose englisch was really quite good) if there were any trains going to be arriving anytime soon. She told me that they were diffusing a bomb and that it would take some time for the trains to be allowed back into the station. Huh, bomb??? That was a very chilling thought - stranded with hundreds of people on the platform. But since the police guys were very calm ... I thought it best not to get agitated! Anyway, another 40 minutes later our train was announced (in dutch, but I thankfully understood the gist of it) on platform 14 and so I rushed down the steps and up another pair of steps and ended up packed like a sardine for the one-station-ride to my car. What a great end to my 28th birthday... I was thinking... this is not going to be a boring year... :-) Dany

Anonymous said...

Hey Sami, Followed the link here from VA talkback and just wanted to say love your sense of humour!! I've read down the page only a bit so far, but it's good.

Sami Rautiainen said...

I'm glad to hear that Daniela. Not because of what happened to you, but to know I am not alone with this. :)

Thanks anonymous. If you get my jokes, you surely have a weird sense of humour. Try to spot those when someone doesn't get my joke and my reply to his one doesn't seem to be related. It does contain some thing that is in the same humour category as the previous post. ;)