amw (amw) wrote,

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Amsterdam is a bit disappointing. This morning i sat down at the WTC to try figure out what i was going to do the next few days. As it turns out, the night train prices have shot through the roof, so tomorrow morning i am taking an express to Osnabrück (where i lived as an army brat) and somehow i need to find accommodation there or in Hamburg before continuing on to Rostock for Schleppgeist's birthday party on Saturday. Now that i've come to downtown Amsterdam i'm not regretting the decision. As teenagers we all pretty much avoided Amsterdam because it was basically the same as Leiden except with more tourists. What Amsterdam was good for was record shopping, but none of the record shops i remember are here any more. It was also great when i was a kid - getting fries in a paper cone, riding a bicycle boat, marvelling at all the row houses and canals and freaky-looking people. Now i am one of those freaky-looking people, but i don't smoke pot, don't listen to electro/trance and don't want to get a random shitty tattoo, so there's not much for me here. Maybe if i was here longer i'd check out the arts scene, but why bother when i can do the same in Berlin without tripping over streets full of retarded stoners? At least the tourists there are clubbers. I was half-considering looking for work here due to the language thing, but honestly the music scene is so commercial and there are so many Brits and Americans walking around i might as well be in Toronto.

Perhaps i'm just in a cranky mood because it's really hot and my best memory of Amsterdam (the record shops) has been crushed by the 24 wheeler of digital distribution. I think i'm going to go back to my hotel early and have a Beatport session tonight - it'd be fitting.

Right now i'm sitting in a swanky cocktail bar, drinking a fabulous Corpse Reviver made with jenever (Dutch gin). I never had jenever when i lived in Holland because liquor was limited to 18+ and i left at 17. You can drink beer at 16 and parents often give their kids wine or beer at dinner so there isn't really an underage drinking culture, and i never bothered to try different spirits till i moved to Australia (and Melbourne in particular). I'm enjoying it. If it wasn't so hot i'd try several jenevers, but in this weather it's all about refreshing sours. I might go a caipirinha next up.

* * *

I found the gay district. Or "a" gay district. Not half a block from the cocktail bar. Now i'm sitting at a Carribbean/Mexican/Colombian (!) restaurant and, to complete the Dutch experience, ordered a Curaçaon stew. And a half liter of sangria. Perhaps Amsterdam gets less shit the more you drink. Or perhaps gays just make a place better. Heh. The waiter here is a total ass, however. Of course he seems to like the ridiculously flamboyant Asian fag who is currently giving him a back rub. Go figure. I hope he's not one of those gays that hates trannies. The bar next door is straight-up packed. If i was a gay dude i'd be spoiled for choice. If i was speaking English i'd probably be doted on too. How many towns do you know where if you sound like a native you get ignored?

* * *

Why do these waiters hate me??? They love every queen and fag hag in the joint. I even petted the restaurant cat. I tip like an American usually but now I'm not so sure. Honestly, what the fuck?

* * *

This cocktail bar has saved the city for me. R&B and oldskool jams early, deep house (the black kind) late. Saxophones. Cigarettes. Cocktails. This is the yuppie me. And fabulously the majority of people here are just locals drinking Heineken. Perfect.

* * *

I guess i passed out last night before i could post this. I ended up giving zero tip at the restaurant because even when i said to make it more they gave me precise change back. Fuck that joint. Also fuck the "help" at that clothing store in Maastricht who - after seeing me storm out of the store in frustration (the usual result of someone taking me clothes shopping) - called my mother back in and told her to put away the clothes i'd been trying on. Also fuck the old ladies i was sitting next to in Leiden who suggested i ask the waiter for a sewing machine (due to my still-ripped jeans, due to me not getting any new pants from the aforementioned store). Holland is as cranky and brusque as ever; i never really noticed it when i lived here, but after Austria and Germany i can see how our reputation for being uptight is well-earned. When you find a relaxed joint here it really is relaxed, but so many people are just straight up assholes.
Tags: travel

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