Drinks in Amsterdam for Drew's Birthday
Trip Start May 26, 2008
104Trip End Ongoing
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Amsterdam is an interesting place, on so many levels. Of course most people know it as the sex & drug capital of the world. It's legal to smoke pot indoors & prostitution is a highly regulated legal industry.
Our first night was spent wondering around the area of our hostel (The Bulldog) & stopped off at an italian restaurant for some delicious pizza.
On Saturday, Lee & I lined up with every other tourist in town to visit the 'Secret Annexe'. A lot of people would have heard about Ann Frank and her family hiding from the Nazi's during the war. After we booked our flights to Amsterdam I went straight out and bought a copy of Ann Frank's diary. The book really brings it home how life was for them in those small cramped rooms & certainly made the experience of visiting the house all the more real
After we'd done our history visit, Lee & I met back up with Margaret & Drew & started walking...and walking.....and walking. We walked for hours & checked out plenty of canals, architecture, bridges & cafes. We also squeezed in another cultural visit & checked out the Van Gogh museum. I love Van Gogh's art & have always wanted to visit this place....job done!!
As the sun went down & we went in search of a local bar we had been told to find. The monkey bar! Having only this information & no directions we asked everyone in sight if they knew of a bar full of monkeys. Eventually we found it...and of course it was absolutely nowhere near the area we were told to look. The name of it actually translates to "In the monkey" & it is one of the cutest little local bars I've seen in a long time. It is tiny! We were the only foreigners in the place & sat searching the room to see how many monkeys we could see. They were on posters, hanging from candelabras, sitting on shelves. The story is that it was once a place that sailors came to drink when in port & would bring along their monkeys. The sailors eventually left but the monkey story stayed. Lee & Drew went by the guidance of the barman & tried a few local beers & then it was time to move on & explore the red light district.
I was a little disappointed that neither of the boys would ask how much the pro's were charging. I was curious how much they get.
After all that, and a little more exploring on my own on Sunday it was time to return to London. Amsterdam is a cool little city. The shopping was pretty good, the crooked buildings were interesting & we had some fun. Good times!!