Sunday, February 20, 2011

Confession: Life in the Netherlands

You know how Portland is called Rose City? If it were up to me, I’d name Amsterdam Bike City. Here, there are probably more bicycles than cars, which sounds pleasant but actually is terrifying. Bicyclers have their own street—partitioned with a curb and everything—and don’t stop for anyone. (It’s a miracle I made it out alive. Especially because I led the group into traffic on numerous occasions.)

On Friday, I weave in and out of bike congestion for the better part of the day. It’s a frigid 40 degrees outside, so my coworkers and I bundle up and kick off the morning with warm, foamy cappuccinos. (After mimosas at the hotel, yes.) I’m also trying to break in my pretty leather boots that I bought on Thursday: the one day each week when stores stay open late and shoppers saturate the streets until 8 p.m.

After the coffee has penetrated my bloodstream and I’m feeling extra bouncy, we hop on a long, narrow boat and tour the city from the water, absorbing the details about Amsterdam’s oldest buildings and the canals that wind past them.

Next is more shopping at lunch at Dam Square, and then cocktails with our European coworkers at the Park Plaza hotel. We wrap up the evening at Little Buddha, a large, loud and dimly lit sushi bar that sits alongside the Pathé Cinema and Jack’s Casino, inside Amsterdam’s emblematic and fully renovated City Theatre.

My confession? I could get used to life in Europe.

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  1. Isn't Holland great!? I loved it there too! Have a great time megs i'm jealous! seeya soon! hope jeff and freddie are doin ok! ;)

  2. Those boots are PERFECT! Just what I've been looking for. I wish I could twist your arm into bringing some back for me...size 9. Haha!