It’s not just weed and prostitutes!

AMSTERDAM, NETHERLANDS:

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Arrival: The overnight ferry was quite interesting. I had never been on a cruise, and it was my mini-experience. I am not sure if I would enjoy a cruise, because with Dramamine I could still feel the wave movement and wasn’t feeling too well because of it. We bus 2 hours from the dock to Amsterdam, and we are dropped off in town to see the sights before we head to our hotel, which was on the outskirts of town.

We had a quick break for snack before lunch, and people were purchasing fries with a huge side of this mayonnaise mixture. It reminded me of Emerson and his love for mayo. We are now 7 hours ahead of Louisiana time instead of the 6 when we were in London.

Our first activity is a 10-euro boat ride around Amsterdam with a pre-taped explanation of the city’s sights. They were definitely off when pointing out destinations and it got fairly confusing, but I still learned a good bit.

  • Canal Systems: They used canals to control the water because like New Orleans they are below sea level. People lived in houseboats on the sides of canals, and back when, which sides of the canals you lived on separated class.
  • Silly Jack: Is their beautiful spire clock. It got its name Silly Jack because it would never chime at the right time.
  • Flea Markets: They started flea markets, and it got its name for the bugs that buzzed about during them.
  • Hoist Pulleys: Because the houses were so close together and had no elevators but were a good 3-4 stories tall. Each house had a hoist pulley, and this is how they would get their furniture into their homes. I recalled a time when we were kids and we would use ropes and the laundry basket to bring grocery upstairs at our house because we didn’t want to keep climbing the stairs.

After the boat tour, Emmeline took us on a walking tour through the Red Light District. It was quite interesting to see how open they were about prostitution. Blue lights were males, red lights were females, and white were transvestites. Very unattractive women were just sitting behind glass in places talking or texting in their lingerie just waiting for someone to come in. I was pretty floored. I was also quite stunned bout the amount of weed around. You could smell it on every corner. After the walking tour we headed back to the bus to head to our hotel, NH Musica. It was the nicest we have had thus fair. Double rooms that were huge and clean. Maggie and I were roommates for this hotel.

We head back into town to watch the Italy v. Spain Final. Barbie, Brianne, Allie, and I went to The Hard Rock for dinner, and then to a local pub to watch some of the game. Exhaustion had hit me and I was in bed probably before the game finished.

Day #1: We had chosen to do the optional package for this day, and it was a Dutch Countryside bike ride. It was beautiful, but it still couldn’t beat Jessica’s and I horseback ride in New Zealand. I honestly don’t think I will ever be able to beat that view.

After the bike ride, Maggie and I who had woken up at 4:30 am to workout, do laundry and use the sauna were exhausted and we headed back to the hotel for a good nap. I slept the rest of the night basically.

Amsterdam was a great city, and I want to go back but unfortunately I was still recuperating from London, and I didn’t get to dive into the atmosphere of the country that I would have liked to.

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