Wandering through Amsterdam for a Day
Trip Start Mar 19, 2010
10Trip End Apr 16, 2010
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Our flight from LAX went smoothly as far as the Luna's were concerned...It's everyone else on the flight that drove us crazy...
Check-in was totally uneventful, and we hung out at Starbucks near our gate until it was time to board. We got to board first and found out we were in fact given bulkhead, AND a bassinet! The KLM rep I had spoken with weeks prior was obviously full of crap. Anyhow, our flight left at 5:15pm. We kept O on his normal routine, with his last dinner around 7pm. Then, we settled him in for his 7:30pm bedtime. Our sweetie slept in his bassinet for the rest of the flight.
Unfortunately, we had some crazy Egyptians sitting next to us with a baby born just 2 days after Oliver. They were both dentists and living in California. Their little girl was cute (when we first met her). After a few minutes, the dad starts laughing and telling us (as his 5-year old is literally climbing and jumping over the seats and rows) that neither of his kids sleep through the night. Not the 5 year old, and not the 7-month old. Oh, excellent.
Right about the time we finished that conversation (around 20 minutes into the flight), their baby girl started screaming, and basically didn't stop until we landed in Amsterdam. Now, I don't want to judge other people's parenting styles (because obviously I haven't been doing this long, and I'm not a professional). That being said, I'll just state that these parents were a hot mess and didn't have a clue as to what they were doing. They made a 10-ounce bottle for their daughter, and everytime she screamed, they gave her a little. Hmmm. That's how the first 5 hours of the flight were. (Note: "discard after 1 hour" rule didn't seem to worry these parents with the huge bottle of formula). Their daughter proceeded to scream, as if she were in massive pain, for much of the rest of the flight. Maybe do a diaper check? Walk around with her? See if she has gas or needs anti-gas medicine? Nope.
I drank a lot of wine with my dinner. I'm pretty sure our seat neighbors (whose religion forbids alcohol) were slightly shocked at this display of sin by a new mother...But, I needed it.
Ok, so we land in Amsterdam and meet my mom in the arrivals hall
Well, once that little nightmare was over, we boarded the train headed to the central station downtown. Our only plans were to eat and visit the Anne Frank house. We arrive in the Central Station and walk outside to be greeted by freezing, grey, rainy weather. Fortunately, within minutes of walking out, the rain subsided and we had relatively ok weather.
We walked through the streets from the station toward's Anne's house and nearly got a contact high (I just learned that term) from all of the marijuana being smoked and sold throughout the shops
Anyhow, we walk past Anne's house and the line seems kind of long, and it was starting to pour, so we tucked ourselves into a little restaurant called Cafe Wester. I had tomato soup which was delish. The place had a very "local pub" feeling, and was in a building overlooking the canal which dated back to the 1600's. The only negative was the automatic 4E gratuity which was added (to a bill which was only 14E). :-(
Following lunch we popped into a little shop and mom bought Oliver some cute little wooden shoe slippers.
We then went into the Anne Frank house. Despite the long line, we were in the door within 10 minutes. It was so amazing to finally see it after just finishing the diary. I couldn't have imagined how steep the stairwells were leading up to the Secret Annexe. It was so dark too - it must have been so depressing for the family to endure. It's just so terrible that they didn't survive, and yet had nearly made it to the end of the war.
We started winding our way back to the Central Train Station following Anne's house. We stopped at a couple of cute shops, and mom was really excited to find a knitting shop.
We caught the train and were back at the airport, waiting at the gate in a flash.
But guess what? NO ONE ever checked our train tickets. Yep, all of that running around to be able to purchase train tickets (with the converted cash) was for nothing. Well, I guess we have our values and principles in tact, but besides that...