Picture Perfect Amsterdam
Trip Start Aug 17, 2012
14Trip End Sep 13, 2012
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For a brief time, we were able to meet up with friends in Amsterdam. Ryan Bjorn and his wife Melissa, are expectating their first baby. She is truly about to pop at any moment. I am blown completely away at the fact that she is 2 days from her due date, and she was out riding her bike to the park to meet with friends for lunch. More about these bikes later. Their apartment is absolutely story-book. They live right on the canal, and the apartment is 3 stories tall. The top is my favorite; they have a patio which overlooks the city, the river, and all the other gingerbread homes. (Krista, I am totally jealous of you for getting to spend 3 months there.) Amsterdam gets a bad rap at times I think. Even back home before we left, as I mentioned we were going to visit Amsterdam, I got funny looks. Yes, yes, I know that there is trouble you can find there if you want, but, you truly have to look for it. I have seen more garbage and offensive things in the Galleria Mall in Birmingham, Alabama that I did in Amsterdam. The city is so clean and innovative. I was so impressed by how creative they have to be to do something as simple as moving into their canal homes. The houses are straight up and narrow, so much so that you almost kiss your knees when climbing the stairs. There is absolutely NO WAY you are getting furniture up to living room, and any thing bigger than a sack full of groceries
About these bikes. Amsterdam would not be the same without the bikes. They make a perfect accessory to every single photo you want to take. Take away the bikes and Amsterdam looses some of its character and charm. If it's raining, Amsterdamers hold an umbrella over their heads and pedal. If they need to talk or text, they still do this while pedaling away. If a friend also wants to catch a ride with you, they simply just jump on the back of the bike and sit side-saddle with their legs pulled up out of the way. They have their own lanes, which are not small lanes. They are the largest lanes. Everyone else, pedestrians and cars must share what's left of available real estate of cobblestone. I wanted to rent a bike, but it's really like driving in New York; it's better to leave that to the locals.
Simply put, we both loved Amsterdam. It met our expectations and maybe even exceeded. We loved meeting up with Ryan. It has been years since I had seen him, and he is just a wonderful, kind person who I remembered
For now, that is all. We travel to France next. More later on that. Goodnight.
Love to all,
Kelley and Jonathan