Who Cut the Cheese? Le Tour d'Amsterdam

Trip Start Aug 02, 2010
Trip End Oct 22, 2010

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Flag of Netherlands  , Noord-Holland,
Sunday, August 8, 2010

Well holly crap.  This place is absolutely insane.  I was even going to make the title Amsterdamned, because you're damned here.  You can honestly do anything you want in this place.  How can a place be so laid back?  I have never seen people like this.  The smell of marijuana (let's be honest, it's everywhere) fills the air wherever you go, whether the bright red light district, the majestic Vondel Park (Amsterdam's version of NYC's Central Park - where I spent an entire day just people watching), or our crazy party hostel - Flying Pig, its almost frowned upon if you don't lit up with them - when in Rome!

And the women.  Oh the women.  I have never seen any like them before.  I think I fell in love 20 times, and yes, I must admit, some of which where even seen through a glass door.  How can these girls, who put themselves through this (suck and fuck - 50 euro) be so God damn good looking.  And how the tourists and locals just keep walking by?  I must admit, I was tempted.  A 27 year old, travelling this vast continent, alone, no female contact in quit some time.  Why not?  Again, when in Rome.  I didn't go through with it, much to Marcus' dismay.  I figured, 50 euro can take me a lot further than 15 minutes of shame can (and let's be honest, 15 minutes is a long, long time, right gents?  Hmmm.  Can I get a discount if I don't go the full 15?)

Anyone who comes to this place, must, I mean, must rent a bicycle.  What a wicked way to travel around a city.  I only wish we'd have this in Canada.  But its intense.  Without a doubt.  Travelling along the bike path, you must deal with tourist walking on them (guilty), motor bikes who use them as if its their own road, and also other bicyclist.  I was in a legit bike race.  Hence, le tour d'Amsterdam, or is it la tour d'Amsterdam.  You know what, who gives a shit!  Multiple bikers on one bike, when there really shouldn't be.  No helmets.  Children, man, woman alike, nobody wears them.  So laid back.  Incredible.

Oh yeah, did I do anything touristy I hear you ask?  Incredibly, I did.  The most amazing tour I have done so far in my life.  No, it wasn't the Heineken Tour (it was closed the two times we tried to go - insert joke here) but I was fortunate enough to do the Ann Frank House tour.  WOW!  Now, I'm a history major, and have a fond interest in military history stuff, particularly dealing with the 2nd world war, but this was the first time that I ever stepped foot on any sort of WW2 grounds.

No pictures obviously, but it was very odd feeling you got when you entered this house.  Quick history, again, what else are you reading?  Ann Frank was a young girl when the outbreak of war began.  Essentially her father owned a warehouse in Amsterdam and they turned it into what they called "the secret annex".  Bunch of rooms in which they could hide while the Nazi's where rounding up all the Jews.  But we all remembered that from history class right?

Anyway, it was neat to see the book shelf that hide the secret doorway, and the steps going up was essentially a 90 degree later.  See where everyone slept, and even got to see one of her numerous diaries.  I never got to read this book growing up, but just reading quick excerpts, for a 12 year old girl, she was a very smooth writer, considering what she was going through.

See, I did do something that didn't destroy braincells in Amsterdam.  Who would have ever thunk it.

But in the end, Amsterdam was a wild and crazy place.  I believe its Satan's playground.  I just had to get out of that city, and not a minute to soon.

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