Thursday, March 17, 2005

Amster-damn fabulous

I'm in Amsterdam. This town rocks.
I love travelling. Always have. Whether it's a roadtrip, plane trip, boat trip, train trip, macht nichts, it's all good. So here I am in Amsterdam, at a totally crappy internet cafe, and damn I'm happy. Why? Because I'm travelling and that makes everything different and special.

Now, that happy happy might be because i just had two very large beers and some seriously kick butt nachos at a place called the Harlem Cafe. That place rocked. Just a tiny place with a bar and some tables, the bartender was the waiter and he tended to everyone with charm and aplomb. (Ha! Aplomb! I get so eloquent after beer.) The nachos were good enough to rate as Texan, and the beer was called Palm, it was a Belgian dark ale, and yummy it was, too. If you wanted to see a menu the guy just grabbed this big chalkboard and brought it over to your table, propping it on a nearby chair. Simple yet effective.

I also had a score shopping. Shopping here is so much better than in Norway, I got two very funky skirts and a pair of shoes, and it was CHEAP! Half the price I'd pay in Norway, so nyah nyah to the boring retail folks in Oslo, you suck and I got good stuff here instead!

The hotel I'm staying at (my friend Karen joins me tomorrow) is called the Hotel New AMsterdam and I highly recommend it. The staff is extremely friendly (my new gay best friends) and the rooms are small but spotless. It was just renovated a year ago. Hotel New Amsterdam. It gets the Karla seal of approval.

The only thing that has me in a tizzy? Crossing the street takes a battle of will and strength. When you cross a street here you are taking your life in your own hands. Some lady on a bike nearly ran over me. After I had already checked both ways for cars and bikes, she appeared out of nowhere and nearly creamed me. Then she yelled at ME! Now when I want to cross, I check both ways for about 5 minutes before sticking a toe into the street, and then I run screaming for the other side. Whew!

So to recap: Don't cross the street unless you have to; eat at the Harlem Cafe: stay at the Hotel New Amsterdam. Shop in the Jordaan.

Right, my blogging duty is done for the night, I am now off for more beer. I hope I can find a nice pub on this side of the road, because I just don't think I have the strength to face crossing the street again. I think for the rest of this trip I am just making right turns. I'll get to know this square block REALLY well.

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