Sunday, March 30, 2008

Amsterdam by canal

Have I mentioned that it has snowed here a few times since my arrival? After our return from Budapest, I went over to compare Atlanta Jim's apartment (old brewery storehouse with walk out window to the Brouwersgracht - Brewer's Canal) to my options, and on the walk back was caught in a full-on blizzard. I may have considered this a beautiful scene, had I not been battling the winds in ballet shoes with no socks - not to mention any hat or gloves - and dodging little evil boys' snowball attacks. Note to self, learn how to say brat in Dutch.
Thursday night, Tom and Heather invited me over for dinner. We were joined by three ex-coworkers. After a nice tour of Tom & Heather's perfect (great neighborhood, modern interior, nice furnishings, lots of storage...basically exactly what I want) apartment, we went on a nighttime canal cruise. Seeing Amsterdam and learning lots of it's quirky history from the water was just amazing. I particularly liked the dancing - aka sinking therefore leaning - houses we learned about during the tour.

The big experience of this weekend was a visit to the movies to see Juno. The Dutch subtitles and clinking of beer glasses & coffee cups weren't too distracting, but the 10 minute intermission, and possibly the lack of popcorn, sure were.
Had a pretty uneventful Sunday, just battled the hordes to do a little shopping for my big trip this week and explored Rembrandt Square. Shops close here at 6pm every night but Thursday so the weekends tend to turn into a human traffic jam on the main shopping streets. Interesting Dutch observation, I have noticed a a few guys listening to iPods and singing their hearts out while cycling around. The first one I assumed was just crazy, but as I saw the next, then the next, I've come to decide the Dutch have an innate craving to be rockstars on bicycles. For those of you that are anxious for more exciting updates just stay tuned......
tomorrow it's off to DUBAI!!!

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