We arrived at 8:20pm. One hour and 40 minutes should be long enough to get in before 10, we figured, and we would thus avoid the extra 50kr fee that is tacked on later in the evening.
Two hours later there were still more than a hundred people in front of us. We started joking about taking a shot each time someone said optimistically, "We're so close!" Of course, we didn't have any alcohol - a rookie mistake. Those who have languished in this line before know that you should bring snacks and booze. We had neither.
Then the rain began to fall. Only one in 200 people had an umbrella, it seemed - and the closest one was too far too shelter us, but close enough to poke me in the eye and make plump drops drizzle directly onto my head.
"It will be worth it," we mumbled, glaring at each person who tried to butt into the line with a little more bitterness each time.
We got in at midnight. It seemed like a miracle. We paid the 185kr fee and dashed in under the bridge, splashing through puddles.
How on earth could it be worth it? Who waits in line for 3 entire hours to pay 200kr and not even get a drink?
I have no idea. But it was. That's the magical thing about Trädgården.
Even now, I can't explain how it was worth it. But it was. My friend and I attended the closing night, thinking we had to be there for one last hurrah, as it was the last chance and neither of us had made it there earlier during the summer.
We had three hours in line and three hours in the club, and while the line dragged on, the hours inside flew by.
The music is decent - there are multiple dancefloors with distinct sounds and flavours. The hamburgers are remarkably tasty, though overpriced. Even a glass of wine can make a hipster's wallet burn a bit. The toilets resemble a campsite. The bar staff have a nonchalance bordering on rudeness.
And yet, it's awesome. It's something about the quirky decorations and the smiles on every single face. People always have a good time here. You get in the door, feeling oh-so-annoyed over the line, and yet your worries wash away. The atmosphere is unbeatable - you'll never find so many people having such a good time, casually but earnestly, rain or shine.
It's still a mystery to me what exactly makes Trädgården keep pulling me back. But I don't mind.