Week 9: Amsterdam

Originally, Amsterdam was not on my list of places to go; I never understood the appeal, and I have a particular dislike for places that get more credit than thy deserve. I decided to go because I had never been and many of my friends in the program were going on the same weekend.

Upon arriving in the city, I found that I was very wrong about Amsterdam. It is the most beautiful city I have ever been in. I loved the tall, skinny, almost colorful townhouses that lined the cobblestone streets overlooking the various canals. There were about 20 bikers and 20 pedestrians to every car. Some of the streets were so skinny that when a car came down we’d have to press ourselves against the wall as to not get hit.

Another interesting aspect was the amount of English. There was more English than any other language. The main language of Amsterdam is Dutch, but throughout the city there were many signs that were only written in English. The Heineken tour was entirely in English. I’m sure every kid has to learn English growing up there, but I think it would still be weird to see more of my second language than my first in my own hometown.

We walked around the city a lot, enjoying the buildings and canals. We saw many museums including Van Gogh, Heineken, and the Sex Museum. We tried getting into the Anne Frank museum, but the line was two to three hours of waiting outside in freezing weather, so we never made it.

Amsterdam was an awesome city to explore and walk around in, especially because I wasn’t expecting to like it very much. I think it’d be a lot of fun to return during the summer when I’m not so reluctant to be outside.

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