There is nothing to see here
History teaches us what we should have done. Or shouldn’t have. It felt like I had my first free day since puberty so I wanted to do anything less labor - like cultural or something. I was ashamed to admit I didn’t even know where to start from. Even if I have now lived a year here in the capital of Sweden, I had to buy a Berlitz –guide to Stockholm to know where I was living. In the book, the first and biggest chapter on sights was something I had came across a few times before on random conversations and news flashes, The Wasa Museum.
Little knowledge and history have never hurt anyone so I decided to take the tour. I fought my way there through another guaranteed parking ticket place and all those Asian paparazzis who had somehow got the knowledge of my location, yet all the time aiming their cameras the wrong way, towards some old garbage. I hate queuing. Especially because the tempting smell of hot dogs was hitting me all the time. However, I managed to stay strong all the way to the ticket office, where I paid what I thought was a relatively high entrance fee.
I don’t know any museum code so some instructions felt necessary. I had the luxury of choosing between Swedish or English tour, but after the first jokes from fat geek speaking nasal sounds through his glasses I decided to go solo anyway. Alright, I might have had a coffee shortage but who wants to see wood and interior from 1600- century? What is so interesting about old things and how a pile of oak was used as a chair! To be fair, I gave it a benefit of a doubt as all these small details were only there to back up the main attraction, Wasa Skip. I did warm up to it a bit. I find it fascinating how many details they had made to a battle ship that was most likely only going to be demolished sooner or later in a war. The wooden ship was so full of sculptures and millions of fine details that surely they couldn’t have been in a hurry to fight anyone, what the Swedish history actually confirms.
I took a coffee and glanced a brochure on the table there. I was amazed to learn that this whole big deal had sunk straight after it left the harbor. It wasn’t a heroic battle ship, it actually went down in its first trip on the harbor and stayed there for 300 years before someone realized… hey, let’s get the bastard up and rip some poor Finnish bloke the admission fee to see it. And I fell for it on my free day.