Friday, November 20, 2009

52 hours on the train within 6 days

As I’m typing these lines I’m sitting on a train going through Denmark at 200km/h on its way from Copenhagen to Hamburg. When I arrive in Hamburg I’ll have a couple of hours to wander through the city (which I had previously visited in 2002) before the final leg of my journey will take me back to Vienna where I’ll arrive on Thursday morning.

The reason why I went up north was that I participated in a very interesting workshop on “ICT and Climate Change” held at the Swedish Ministry of Enterprise, Energy and Communications in Stockholm on Monday. The workshop brought together about a dozen researchers and experts from across Europe to present their work, discuss various aspects within the larger context of ICT and climate change and suggest areas and topics which require further research.

(c) Serious Games Institute ( Yours truly during his talk

Since I had never been that far north I scheduled my trains so that I could spend a couple of hours in Copenhagen on the way to/from Stockholm, another couple of hours in Hamburg and an extra day in Stockholm.

So Tuesday was spent exploring the Swedish capital which I found to be a really nice city. Especially Gamla Stan (the Old Town) and Söderalm are great places to wander around or just hang out.

I also liked Copenhagen quite a lot even though I only had 2x ~4 hours there to more or less randomly walk around the city centre.

As ever so often Wikitravel turned out to be an excellent and very useful guide when it came to exploring these cities. Especially since I had saved pdf versions of the Stockholm and Copenhagen entries onto my XO-1 which really makes for an excellent digital companion when exploring cities.

The train rides themselves were all really quite relaxing even though it sounded like an insane undertaking when I bought the tickets. I simply enjoy travelling on trains a lot and still think it’s the nicest (but of course not necessarily the most convenient or time-/cost-efficient) way to get around.

Once I’m back in Vienna I’ll pretty much stay put there until Christmas. The only exception is a short half-day trip to Salzburg next Tuesday where I’ve been invited to give a guest-lecture about OLPC at Salzburg University.

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