While we were in Amsterdam:
* I took a toke of someone’s “cigarette”–one puff was more than enough! WOW!
* Saw the Red-Light District and got gesture-yelled at by one of the prostitutes. The red-light in Amsterdam is not like the red-light in Germany! Sex–no, they put it OUT there. It was reminiscent of a live “JC Penney’s” ad. The girls were in undies posing or whatever, but nothing overtly sexual. There was a door behind them and it seemed pretty sterile to me…a bed with clean white sheets and a sink.
* Walked down “CoffeeHouse” row. The entire street smelled like pot. Sweet cigarettes. No, I didn’t go in. My husband is not allowed inside and out of respect, I did not enter one either. Considered getting an “Amsterdam” bong from a head shop for a souvenir, but wanted the wooden clogs more.
* Went to an Irish pub and met some interesting peeps. That’s where I had the toke.
* Saw the tulip gardens.
* Did not visit any museums (and I ALWAYS visit museums!) The Anne Frank house had a line that wrapped around the street at 10 am. We considered standing in line, but we considered the historical significance about the house, instead. Walked to the Rembrandt museum, which cost 8 euro and didn’t seem worth it. We then walked to the Van Gogh museum. There was also a line that wrapped around the building an hour before it closed…also not worth it…then there was the Rijksmuseum which was 11 euro (way too much!) which was also closing in an hour. We considered going to the diamond museum which was free and no lines (ironically) but we were already so tired by that point!
* Visited the Keukenhof gardens. My husband was bored after an hour, but stayed with me for nearly 7 hours. I couldn’t get enough! It was fabulous!
* We thought that we’d visit a military museum in Arnhem, but it didn’t work out so well and we became pressed for time. We did visit a cemetery and saw the famous Arnhem bridge (but did not drive across it). The cemetery was not an American cemetery, either. We were the only ones there besides the grounds keeper. The people who were buried there were polish, british and dutch. We noticed a stark contrast between American and non-American soldiers–non-American soldiers were older and many with families. There were very few men who were in their late teens and early twenties. Many of them were in their mid to late 20s and even some privates as old as 38. It was pretty impressive. As Americans, we tend not to think about the other people who lost their lives in the war and come to think of it, never seen a cemetery for German soldiers who fought. They may have been OUR enemy, but they were someone’s HERO! And I think the point gets lost sometimes…they were just people, kids like our grandparents were back then. They were just as much sons, brothers, uncles etc as our guys were and all of the guys who lost their lives need to be remembered…not just the “good guys”–insomuch as the men and women (all 6.5 million of them) who innocently lost their lives.