ericaamber

Weekends in Amsterdam

In Uncategorized on June 1, 2014 at 5:50 pm

Amsterdam is a very dynamic city. It has so many different facets and personalities just waiting to be discovered.

Saturday morning I went for a lovely run down by where the cruise ships come in, it definitely made me a touch nostalgic, and it felt strange to be there without the majestic shadow of the Carnival Legend looming in the distance. I love to explore via my morning runs because it feels very unobtrusive. No one suspects early morning runners to be tourists so you really feel like a local. Saturday morning was fairly quiet, people going to work, house boaters enjoying a morning coffee on their open decks. Some dog walkers and other runners exchanged morning greetings with each other.

Saturday night, taking the advice of a bartender close to our hostel, we wandered into a live music bar in the clubbing area of Amsterdam. The band was fabulous and by the time we left the bar, it was packed and so were the streets. Saturday night in Amsterdam is electric. People everywhere all with different agendas but all enjoying themselves. Business people just finishing late dinners, families taking evening walks, club goers just getting started. The later it gets, the more the streets are populated by nightlife enthusiasts eating from boxes of ‘Wok to Walk’, looking for the next party, or just trying to find their hotel rooms. Our hostel, The Flying Pig, was ever entertaining, a haven for free spirits and fellow travelers. There was always someone to share a story and a beverage with, but everyone also did their best to keep the noise to a minimum in the dorms, for those of us who wanted some rest. Our particular dorm slept 32 people, which was definitely entertaining. The girls and I had our own little corner, and in the five nights we spent there we watched dozens of jovial strangers move in and out. We began to feel like old pros, chatting with each new group about their travel plans, or where they had come from. I had a tougher time than some, as I’m a light sleeper at the best of times, and an insomniac at the worst, but it was an adventure and I wouldn’t change it for the world. We met some of the most wonderful people in The Flying Pig, and I highly recommend it.

Sunday morning I went for the same run, but it felt as though I was running in a different city. In the same manner that Saturday night exploded with activity, Sunday morning in Amsterdam was boisterous and lively. Everywhere along the water, families laid out blankets and picnics and little children in bathing suits dipped their toes in the water. Dogs chased frisbees, and moms with strollers chatted to each other. People everywhere loaded up their boats with supplies for the day, preparing for a day on the water. The people of the Netherlands all seemed bound and determined to enjoy their Sunday in the glorious sunshine.

Tourists headed to the Anne Frank haus, or the Van Gogh Museum, took river cruises, and marveled at the beautiful architecture. I think that sometimes in a city with such a revered nightlife, there can be a tendency to forget about the rest of the hours in the day. Amsterdam has so much to offer everyone, no matter what time of day or what your interests are, there is something for you in Amsterdam.

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