Back to Amsterdam

Trip Start Dec 26, 2005
Trip End Jan 25, 2009

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Flag of Netherlands  , Noord-Holland,
Wednesday, July 5, 2006

I was out in probably less than 5 minutes last night. Couldn't even remeber trying to get to sleep.

Ashlee House in London turned out to be one of those hostels I can highly recommend for other budget travellers to London. Many times better than the sterile YHA I stayed in on Oxford St. It was made better by rooming with Jim... a young wheat farmer from Moora, WA. He's surfing himself around the world and was great to talk to for the short time I was in London. He's on his way to Bordeaux in France to surf along the coasts of Spain, France and Portugal. The other 2 beds were empty which was kind of good... makes my transition from my own room at my mum's to crowded, smelly hostels so much easier. Ashlee House was excellent... not only for the social value, but the value for money and the fact that for 18 pounds, I got breakfast as well. The hostel had a good atmosphere... full of younger-type backpackers.

Couldn't be bothered sleeping past 7.30am... got awoken by some mysterious alarm clock at around 4am. Both Jim and I couldn't figure out who it came from. The breakfast was served by a very jolly old irish man... muesli, milk, coffee and toast. Left the hostel at 9.30am because I didn't really know for sure how to get to Stanstead Airport but it turned out to be sinch. I quizzed the guy at the underground station who told me I could get an express train from Tottenham Hale Underground Station for 16 pound. It ended up taking me only 1.5 hours to get to the airport... so I had several hours to spend, at what seems to have become my second home... AIRPORTS. Got to love them.

I scored an excellent deal through EasyJet for 31 Euro ($50) to fly London-Amsterdam. This budget airline has really impressed me... on time and friendly hostesses.

So here I am in Amsterdam... for round 2. I'm pretty much still getting over the huge flight so will keep the nightlife to a minimum tonight. But I still managed to down two pints at one of my favourite pubs with an excellent viewing vantage point... open window with a good breeze and friendly patrons. Met a Saudi Arabian guy tonight... first guy I've met from this country.

I'm staying at the Shelter... the cheapest accommodation in Amsterdam. Only costs around the 18 euro mark ($25) which includes breakfast. I'm sharing a room with 15 other guys and it's very basic with "Jesus Loves Yoú" signs plastered everywhere. The security, however, is good with lockers outside the dorm. It's in a noisy area so the ear plugs and eye mask will be coming out tonight. Kind of reminds me of the type of place I stayed in when I was here last time, except that dorm had 40 people in it.

It's very hot here... high 20s. Apparently, London is going through a heat spell with temps round the 30 degree mark. They don't know what heat is!

The fiasco with Big Brother is in the news here in Europe/UK. John Howard's statement that the show is 'stupid'and should be axed is flying strong. Go Camilla and Dave!

I've got 5 nights here, maybe 4. Looking forward to relaxing here. I definitely feel on holiday mode here... especially with the heat, the mellow atmosphere, the copious amounts of beer being served etc. A great place to hang out for a few days. Only wish it could become a bit cooler! I'm sure the hostel dorm will be a scorcher tonight.
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