Well, not really lost and not really a weekend either. Myself and Lorraine just got back from 5 days in Amsterdam (or Hamsterjam as I like to think of it). We had a great time. It is the most beautiful city and just exudes a confidence, cool and charm that many other cities are lacking.
We stayed in the Jordaan area which was like the leafy suburbs, and kinda removed from the more in your face red light parts of the city. I felt very inspired when there, to well move to the place. The weather was great (coming back to Ireland and the ever present cloud is such a drag man!) and there is a very relaxed vibe in the place.
We ate lovely vegetarian foodstuffs and saw some interesting things (if History and Art are of even a passing interest you will love it there), flaked out in the Vondel Park and generally walked the feet off ourselves. We did a /lot/ of walking.
We didn’t hire any bikes, as the day we went to do it we didn’t have our passports and there was such a rigmarole with deposits etc we gave it a miss. I did love the Dutch dedication to the whole bike culture, so hats off.
Also we didn’t hire a boat or do the canals thing. We got great mileage out of watching a couple of spacers scrape along the canal wall in a peddle boat as one of them couldn’t seem to get his head around the fact that he had to actually peddle to kinda contribute to the whole forward motion lark. V. funny.
We also saw a lot of nice cats, in peoples windows and also in restaurants (hopefully not on the tables etc) and the Dutch are a very stylish lot in general exuding a natural elan as they fly around on old butchers bike.
I couldn’t help think that we have kinda got it wrong in Ireland. We work like maniacs to buy expensive stuff that give a temporary, flickering happiness at best. We need a more mellow pace of life, that balances industry with all the other bits that are supposed to be balanced. Whatever aligns your chakras, I guess.
The red light was fun, and not what I was expecting. I thought it would be seedier. There were tons of families going for collective strolls and eating Ice creams. Which was fun to behold, if a little weird. In Catholic Ireland we would be far to afeared to do anything like that with our folks.
There were tons of stoned people as well. Lets leave it at that. I don’t smoke anymore and I am kinda proud that I left the ‘Dam (as I shall refer to it) without spending the entire time totally blathered, sitting in some shit hole talking about aliens.