|From our chalk board at home =)|
|Yellow flowers and sunshine can do this|
|I couldn’t resist this one!|
That Sunday we started the day with an open boat canal tour of the city. We had a lesson in finding an open top boat for such tours which otherwise can be boring. We found a perfect, small boat with no headsets for standard commentary. Instead we had a local old lady talking us through Amsterdam’s history – how the wealthy came to Amsterdam from all around the world, how places got their names, how they have over 150 nationalities living there, and so on. Most fascinating for me was how the houses in the city had tree trunk foundations which lasted over a hundred years but many are now getting weak and several houses have a tilt. I mean move over leaning tower of Pisa. These houses are serious business.
That same evening we also did a tour of the red light district. C still manages to surprise me at times – this time with a map he managed to find online with 12-13 landmarks of the district. Before we knew it I was navigating and leading our tour group of two. But this is ideally a night time activity (duh). I was very fascinated by the windows which I knew were occupied by women at night and made sure to take C back there after dinner. It was obviously nothing like anything I had ever seen before. And in the spirit of being there I even bought myself a conservative souvenir from a shop.
|This is how it’s done|
Our final day in the city was relaxed. The weather was confused – extreme winds and some rain were followed by a surprisingly pleasant sunny spell. We did not have much of an agenda except to get a good, filling meal – it happens towards the end of every trip. So we found an Indian restaurant with Pakistani staff and really good food! Koh-i-Noor restaurant was a good find after landing at several closed places across the city. But before that we chanced upon the Coster Diamonds factory for a free tour and a walk through their collection of some fine stones. The other (original) Kohinoor story of theirs wasn’t fun. It never is. But pestering C for diamonds (which I’m not even particularly crazy about) was super fun. *grins*