24 hours in Amsterdam

October 14th, 2011

What can I say about this day? It was the first day in my two month adventure on the other side of the world….first time in Europe, first time alone on the other side of the world, first time leaving a boyfriend at home…heading to India of all places. I was a bit overwhelmed but, in a passive way…if that makes sense

well…lets just enjoy a story time.

I was alone after a 10 hour flight beside a lovely older couple who took care of me as I slept through a meal service or two :) I wondered out of customs wearing the only warm-ish clothes I brought and only a day pack full of few items, my camera and the name of the hostel I booked before leaving Canada. Without realizing how complicated the streets of Europe can be, I wandered off the train in search of my hostel. Yes, I got lost. Not having 3G is a huge pain in the ass. However, getting lost was quite enjoyable. Eventually a kind looking older man walked towards me and I recruited him for directions. He actually walked me right to the square near where I was going. We enjoyed a friendly chat as we wondered through the Red Light District (which is probably exactly how you imagine it but cleaner and less creepy). Hardly after I said thank you for his help and took two steps forward, again I was lost for where to step next.

Wandering through a market in the square close to my hiding hostel with vendors selling fresh fruit juices and crafts all around, I enjoyed being lost for the second time. Eventually, after a few photos and some nice scenery a nice couple pointed me towards curved road which I followed. Down another strange alley I finally found the hostel and checked myself in.

To be honest, I was bagged, slightly overwhelmed and not feeling 100% healthy. With my experience finding the hostel and how I was feeling physically, I tossed the idea of heading to the Anne Frank house out the window and any other plans I had dreamed of. After a needed nap I gathered my few items and headed out to the streets again. I strolled conservatively keeping in mind where I needed to return to. I window shopped, listened to music flood out of passing boats in the beautiful canals and enjoyed the feeling to being present in such a place, for such a short moment in time.

I found a small quaint cafe on a corner of two canals where I decided to have a bite to eat. I got a smoked salmon sandwich of sorts and watched locals bike and stroll passed the window. The sandwich was delicious…but unfortunately my body didn’t feel like eating because before I even paid my bill the sandwich was sitting at the bottom of their toilet….I’ve never puked from nerves but I guess there’s a first for everything!

I reluctantly walked back to my hostel trying not to be disappointed with how little I was able to do and see in the one time I would be in Europe for a long while. Instead of soaking in the culture I curled up in my hostel bed, set my alarm for my early early flight out of Europe and went to sleep before the local’s supper time.



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6 thoughts on “24 hours in Amsterdam

  1. These are really wonderful, Jen! Sorry to see you didn’t get to enjoy more of Amsterdam, but next time, you’ll visit everything you wanted. :) The images are amazing, cannot wait to see more form this adventure of yours!

    Like

  2. Found you via Rose :) I have traveled a lot and I know your feelings! I kind of went through the same on my first trips overseas alone. I’m anxious to read and see more from your trip! :) Great photos.

    Like

  3. Pingback: Ashtanga in Agonda | jennifervallee

  4. Pingback: Amsterdam, take two | Jennifer Vallee

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