For the past 1,5 weeks I’ve been spending my time in the town with everything to offer. Amsterdam.
What you can’t do in AMS is not worth doing
So why did I all of a sudden just randomly go to Amsterdam?
Well, like everything else, there’s always a story behind it…
It all started in Yangshou, China.
Years back I wrote a post “I once met two angels”. To sum up the post it’s about when I met two free spiritual individuals that changed my life. One, the guy Aboo. Second, the girl Yu Si. Both from China.
We got very close and very fast fast became good good friends and travelled around southern China for one week.(Though it seems so much longer)
At the city of Beihai we split. Aboo went back to Yangshou and Yu Si to her job in Shanghai.
That was the last time I saw them. Atleast, that’s what I thought…
Days turned into months, months into years…
After having a real long time with no contact, I found out the girl was studying in Amsterdam.
I felt this was my chance to finally meet up again with one person who truly made a difference in my life.
So for her birthday I flew down there to surprise her.
When I booked the tickets I decided to stay for a bit more than a week so I really had the chance to explore AMS aswell.
The first three days I stayed in a hostel paying some €15-25/night. Thats what I paid for a whole week at hostels in Asia. Europe is expensive!
The latter days my snoosing took part at the dorm guestroom where my friend lived.
Canals, nice people, bars, restaurants(like alot), cheap beer, coffeeshops museums, prostitutes, tourists and lots lots of bicycles!
I will try and break them down here, one by one.
The canals oh the canals. What beauty to witness. While spending my time in AMS I found out that everything is artificially planted in AMS. So that’s probably why everything looked so great with the canals, and trees along. Every single plant is even artificial.
This because AMS was built from a swamp. Why anyone would wanna build it in a swamp beats me, but I guess they had a great deal of the passage with goods from different parts of the world.
Nice people. They truly are. I always go in to a situation with a smile. And the response to that smile varies from all over the world. Sometimes like in China, you get the smile back times ten! In Amsterdam they were’nt that generous, but still very very friendly. And good looking. The dutch girls were a feast for my eye :p
Bars n Restaurants. What do you want to eat? You can probably have it all. My experience though, was that it was quite pricey. That said from someone who lives in Sweden where everything cost alot.
If you want a diet made out of lager, then this is the city for you. Beer was cheap, and boy, you could get it anywhere. If I have some chinese friends listening I could compare it to beeing Tsingtao-cheap That beeing about €.20/bottle in the store.
Coffeeshops…yeah, great coffee
(yeah, my folks might read this so I’ll cut it here, haha)
I must have gone to a dozen museums while being in AMS. I got the museum card for €40. Well worth the money, because the entrance to a single museum was around €8-15. However I did try to go into a museum with my dear friends card. Yeah, breaking the law. I’m wild!
But the guard didnt think I looked like a chinese, so I told him my father was from China, and he bought it, haha
I felt really bad though and finally did buy the card myself.
I did one mistake while going to these museums. I went in the wrong order.
I took the best ones first and then worked my way through the crappier after that.
The highlight was visiting the Van Gogh-museum. This said, you should bare in mind that I know nothing of art and frankly am not that interested.
But there was something with the way they built it up that even I was sold from the beginning.
You follow the life of Vincent Van Gogh. Who insipired him, the works he did, his legacy and who he in his turn got to inspire. It was beautiful!
Among others I also went to the Anne Frank house.
That day was a sad day.
The whole house gives out a feeling of hurt, disbelief and a search for freedom.
You can walk around the whole two buildings. The office+annex. There are actual pages that she wrote on while being in hiding in the central Amsterdam.
From the moment I walked in til I left I had a cold feeling down my spine.
I was upset when I left, because it seemed like I was the only one affected.
From early childhood we’ve been fed the information of what happend in Germany, Poland, Netherlands etc. during the second world war, that some ppl just dont have any room to feel the compassion anymore.
I actually saw some people laughing inside while watching the exhibition.
And believe me you, there was no room for laughter!
Now for a merrier subject…if you could say that.
The prostitutes of the Red Light District.
I have never been so popular before in my life as when walking past the lightly dressed girls standing in their windows trying to seduce some guy out of their wallets. They wanted me in there for sure, ha!
For me, coming from Sweden where all this is banished, it just seems wrong. I’ve always thought prostitution is a dirty business. But the world is so up side down when you come to Amsterdam. I read that in a survey with the dutch ppl that 78% had no problem at all with prostitution!
If you were to make the survey in Sweden it would be like 5%.
I respect all the worlds countries and their believes, but I dont share them all.
The Red Light district was to me not a dirty place. It was a circus. An everyday 24/7 open circus where everyone is invited. Smoking pot, watching peep-shows, banging a hoe and afterwards having a beer watching some football.
What you can’t do in AMS is not worth doing!
The town was overflooded with tourists. Who am I to talk?! But it’s a part of a lively city, and I liked it. It made me look & feel more like a true Amsterdamian.
What I loved most about this city was the bikes. There are supposed to be, at any given time, around 600’000 bicycles in the streets in Amsterdam. That’s impressive!
And they have bike-roads for them aswell. All over the city. And if you dont watch out you WILL get hit by them. It’s the law of rolling beasts, and the bike drivers are the one running the show. Beeing a guy who’d rather move his has than sit on it, I was very happy about all this. I just wish every city would make it like this. Bikes are a great way to get around. Ofcourse it helped alot that Amsterdam is such a small compact city. You could get from the very outskirts of one side to the other in 45 minutes. Including the traffic!
All in all, I love Amsterdam! =D