May 16, 2008


Norway's largest labor organization, LO, has many member unions. Some of them organize airport employees. And some of those employees went on strike today at 8:00 am, closing five airports including ours in Bergen (BGO).

It's rather interesting to hear what sort of emergency solutions people and airlines come up with. The airlines did not want to land at BGO because that would strand the machines there. So they diverted traffic - and passengers - to the airports in Haugesund and Stavanger, two cities south of Bergen that can be accessed by car, bus or ferry. The train between Bergen and Oslo is now sold out and some people are renting cars. The thing is, this is a major traveling day because a lot of people want to spend Constitution Day with family.

The morning news was full of reports on how airlines and passengers were handling the upset of closed airports. But our local radio station started getting several calls about something else that was of even greater importance to the locals: Did the Oslo team that is playing our local team, Brann, tonight make it to Bergen? The answer, to the relief of many soccer fans, is yes.

The May 16 match is always a home match and a big spectacle and kicks off many all-night parties (and a few fights) what with the following day being a holiday. Who cares about grounded planes? It would be a bigger disaster if Brann couldn't play tonight!

PS: Since our opponent is one of the heavy-weights in the Norwegian premier soccer league, I'll be watching the game on TV tonight. If I were betting, I'd bet a final score of 0–0.

UPDATE: Good thing I didn't bet. We won! 1–0! (Took 'em almost the whole match and the other team losing one man, though.) Anyway: Heia Brann!


Sparkling Red said...

That reminds me of the TTC strike in Toronto just a few weeks ago. If we ever doubt how much we rely on a service, just try going without it!

Keera Ann Fox said...

I think a bus or subway strike upsets the daily routine more. With a truck strike because people go crazy in the grocery stores for fear of running out (you should've been here for the toilet paper strike) since no deliveries. Speaking of delivery: The airport strike is affecting the mail.