Thursday, January 2, 2014

Amsterdam, Netherlands

Excuse me. This is the time in my trip that I started burning myself out. I was tired. I wanted to sleep all the time, but obviously we all kept on.  However, I didn’t keep on keeping on with writing out my blog posts. I will now go from memory, so I apologize in advance if they are a little dry.

We arrived in Amsterdam. I was excited because it was a city that we didn’t have a whole list of things we wanted to do. Besides walking around the city (like we did for all cities) the only thing on the list was Ann Frank’s house.

We first checked into our hostel. We had a little trouble navigating it, but eventually found it. There was some construction going on in the street that we had to work around. The hostel seemed a little sketchy at first and I think the men that were running it were a little odd. And the stairs leading up to the main room were so steep that it was an interesting adventure every time especially with the boot and crutches. But we had a place to sleep. We were in a 6-person bedroom with our own bathroom.  That was handy. 

This was how it was everywhere. Down every street. It was nuts!! 

Many different styles of riding/bikes. And people!

We decided to walk around for a little while. I was (we were) amazed at how many bikes/bikes there. I hardly saw any cars!! And when I did see them I was often times bigger than the car. Now how ‘bout that.  I had my "first" Burger King burger here. I used to get them all the time when I was younger, but haven't touched fast food hamburgers in many many years. It was actually pretty good! I think I had two in Amsterdam!! haha. It was in Burger King that I picked up a paper and on the front page was the Boston Bombing. 

The best part of Amsterdam was visiting Ann Frank’s house. It was so touching and just horribly sad. The Holocaust was very real.  Pictures were not allowed to be taken inside of the house.  I would have loved to shared with all of you.  It took us through every room and where the families were hiding at the time. They were so close to making it to the end. They were ratted out. The only person to have survived was Ann’s father.

Ann Frank's front door 

We did some fine cheese tasting here 

Amsterdam was the last stop that Jessica would be joining us. She had already made her trip to Paris and had to get back to Birmingham. From here Sophie and I would stop in Brussels and then head to Paris for 5 days. Our friend Katie would be joining us there. We are getting closer to the end of our trip. I am excited to go to the remaining countries, however, I am still counting down the days until Birmingham.  Like all of our stops Amsterdam was a short one. I would say that we maybe averaged a day and a half in most countries besides Spain, Italy, and France.

I should also mention that we did go to the Red Light District. It was interesting to say the least, but not as bad as I was preparing for. Maybe it was because it was daytime?

On to Brussels.