So my time in Bruges has come to an end. Though it was an extended time anyway, I still feel sad to be leaving. There is absolutely one certainty i’ve cemented in my mind during this trip and it is that who you are with can completely transform the landscape. Bruges might be beautiful but without the added emotions that being with wonderful people brings it might have just been another old town. Special thank you to Vanessa for showing me around her hometown you’re exceptionally dangerous when it comes to beer.
There’s something special to me when it comes to pretty towns, and the ability to walk everywhere. It isn’t really a thing in Australia. It’s either too far to go anywhere important, or too hot, or both. You can walk, but you better have somewhere cool to reset when you arrive. My house for the past two years was at least 13 minutes drive out of the main town – walking just wasn’t a sane option. I love being able to wake up and walk from point A to B and Bruges, Prague, and Bruneck have all been perfect examples. Maybe a little too quiet to live there forever, but perfect for a short period of time.
I think I’ll always remember the feeling, the vibe, of walking down the cobbled streets of Bruges and smiling. Completely safe, completely comfortable, happy people everywhere, cafes every three metres, parks left, right and centre, and buildings older than my home country. It really is spectacular.
My bus to Amsterdam (the one I actually made it to) was delayed by an hour because the bus driver decided he wanted some food. Ohhhhkay? So an hour later than planned I’ve arrived in what is already a beautiful city. Even if it is some ridiculous hour where barely anything is doable or seeable. The hostel itself is superb. It’s called Via Amsterdam and it’s just something else. Massive, clean, quirky, and it has literally everything you could ever need. Bar, pool, laundry, cinema, restaurant, and very decent rooms. Wins all around.
The first thing I noticed, and continue to notice, is weed. It’s everywhere. I shouldn’t be shocked since I’m in Amsterdam and all… but I still am. I don’t do drugs, never have, ideally never will, but it’s quite impressive to see that it’s so widely embraced (I personally don’t think there’s a negative to weed). I’ve definitely noticed a massive upswing in it’s usage here in Europe, but this is next level. All the more to them!
Some more observations from Amsterdam:
- It’s extremely cold here. Colder than the north of Italy. The canals make it a natural wind tunnel and the clouds don’t help.
- After 10pm the bars seem to be filled with men. This leads me to the main question: where are all the women of Amsterdam?? We’re talking a seriously 9:1 ratio!
- Amsterdam is very walkable. I know everyone says to hire a bike but personally I think I’d die. It’s pretty hectic. I always imagined something peaceful but that’s not the case.
- As beautiful as it is I do feel like the majority (if not all) of the main things to see in Amsterdam can be done in a day with little effort. I may have overbooked here.
- It’s quite expensive in most ways. Seems to be the case the further North I go the worse my bank account gets hit. I’ve been looking into getting a haircut and I’m absolutely appalled to find the average price for a MENS hair cut in Denmark, Sweden and so on is $50 AUD and more… WHAT!?!?!?
- I have decided to stop drinking for the second half of my trip. Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Norway and Iceland will be mostly dry experiences. I have a cracked rib which makes sleeping nearly impossible due to constant agony. In addition to this I also have a sprained ankle (same night, and I think same fall). It’s just too expensive on my body and my bank.
I also got to hang out with Ben again (friend from hostel in Bruges) and caught up with my fave Argentinians (sorry Augusto 😉 ) before they leave for greener pastures (home).
It’s always amazing how small the world is when you least expect it.
Without further ado here are some shots I’ve taken of Amsterdam:
Tomorrow I head to Nijmegen to see my friend Bram who you may all remember from such films as “Drunk in Seoul” and the classic cult hit “Why did we drink this much, again?”
Hopefully this is my last beerventure for a while! My body needs it.
THEN ONTO COPENHAGEN WOOOO
Chat soon folks