Sometimes your original plan doesn’t happen: my original thought had been to spend the long weekend we have for Easter in Brussels and Amsterdam. As it turned out, I cancelled my two days in Brussels and stayed in Heidelberg to finish recuperating from a cold. I had also waited too long to book everything I needed and it was nearly impossible to make Brussels happen, at least not within my budget. So I booked the buses to Amsterdam instead, with a layover in Brussels. The entire process of getting to Amsterdam was lengthenend by a three-hour delay: there had been some mix-up, and our bus that was supposed to take us from Brussels to the Netherlands took the wrong route, or something. It was fine: just meant more time in Brussels than I expected!
I like Flemish; it’s so similar to German that I can read it without a problem.
When it did arrive, the bus brought me to Amsterdam without difficulty. I figured out which bus to get on and went to meet the Kurts (yes, both of my buddies for this adventure were named Kurt) at the campsite. The two had been here for a day already, and, as soon as I put my bag down, were ready to explore again.
Amsterdam was busy at night, with the cafes and cannabis coffeeshops full and the red light district bustling. I was somewhat skeeved out walking through that area, but we left it soon enough and parked outside a small restaurant. We sat and relaxed until after midnight and headed back.
The night was cold, but passed. I went to an Easter service with Kurt M on Easter morning. I was mostly focused on trying to read the Dutch in the program than connecting with the Easter spirit, but the singing was lovley and soothing and the spacious church had great acoustics. We were given a kind of thick bread studded with raisins and an apple-y filling afterwards. Happy Easter in Amsterdam!
After the church service, we three went our separate ways for the afternoon. I made my way to the Keukenhof Tulip Fields. I didn’t stay very long, unfortunately, but the rolling sea of colors demanded a smile the whole time.
The city of Amsterdam has a multi-layered culture all of its own that I wish I could have experienced in greater depth. I’ll be back, and I’ll spend all day napping in tulip fields!
The Kurts, G and M, on the public ferry.