I have been finding it hard to blog. I have been busy of course. I am on vacation after all. I have been tired. Tourist life is hard work. I have been lackadaisacal. I really hate blogging off this tablet. Like REALLY! But I will blog while I remember the good times.
So Amsterdam. Amsterdam is not like Rome or Paris. Amsterdam is not a city of monuments. But it is a beautiful city. It is a city infused with a different kind of magic - a magic inherent in its culture and the people who are the catalysts for this culture. There are dozens of museums here in the city. The section of the city where quite a few of the museums can be found is called Museumplein. It would be near impossible to even attempt to do all in the short time I have here so I have earmarked just three - the Van Gogh Museum, the Museum of Modern Art and the Rijksmuseum. Being the tired bunny that I am, I saved the best for first - and so my first day was spent wandering the rooms of the amazing Rijksmuseum. Here one can find Rembrandt's most famous painting - The Night Watch. Surprisingly, the museum was not packed. There was no mind numbing queue as there had been when I had visited the Louvre, Uffizzi and the Prado. I think it being a day of mourning in the Netherlands may have contributed to that, with the city being in a bit of shock during the day. The bodies of the Dutch victims of the tragic MH-17 flight were flown in that day.
I always seem to marry high art with the other end of the cultural spectrum and ended up in the Red Light District later in the evening. I must say, having visited Pigalle in Paris, I knew this was not going to be an eye opening experience. Instead it reminded me how gullible tourists can be. A bunch of "coffee shops" serving everything but good coffee - anything your heart desires when it comes to the herb. Sex shops with tired looking specimens. Yeah...the Red Light District. Next. I did not even waste valuable camera battery time there.
But the company during the day made it a great day. And also saved it from complete sourness after the public transportation system seemed to go beserk on account of the day of mourning. Thanks to a kind Dutch guy named Rick, who helped us foreigners navigate the Dutch transport links so I could get back to my hotel and to some cocktails.
I will probably do an entire blog entry on my hotel but just wanted to say, I love it. Such a great place to come home to in a city that so far has outdone itself in the kindness and warmth departments. A far cry from the experience last year. Thank you, Amsterdam! I knew I made a great choice!
I will check in next time to share my canal cruise , cheese tasting and Belgian adventures with you. Bruges - simply beautiful.