22 September 2009

couchsurfing and amsterdam.

So far the entire couchsurfing thing has been working out.  The person I was staying with was in a quaint little neighborhood in an area of Amsterdam called Westerpark.  It wasn't too far from central station, but it was a good mile walk, nonetheless.  The girl was extremely nice, also a junior in college, and so was her roommate.  The bathroom was about the size, or smaller, of an airplane bathroom, but I really cannot be complaining.  Even though there are only two of us traveling, it has been a great experience.

The dutch really do love their cheese.  I cannot tell if I want to go on an all bread and cheese diet from now on, or never see any food that is lactose-based again.

The public transportation system here is okay, but it doesn't have to be great considering everyone ranging from the age of 5-105 owns a bike. There is a bus system, a metro, and a tram system.  I have only been on the bus and tram-the metro seems almost pointless.  They also have chipcards here, which you just scan in when you get on whatever you are traveling by, and scan out when you get off.  However, apparently the government is monitoring people's travels who are residents here, and are going to start charging per kilometer.  The poorer people live further out of the city, and most likely will have to pay more to get in to the city for work, which makes no sense.

Bikes: I have never seen so many cruiser handlebars, skirt guards, chain guards, long bikes, and whatever else you can do to modify a bike for everyday living.  It seems as though everyone here abides by the rules of the slow bicycle movement.  I also definitely saw someone biking in 6 inch heels last night. I had also never ridden on the back of a bike on a rack before in my life, well, until last night.  It is extremely common to conduct such practice here, and it doesn't even seem unsafe.  Maybe its the lack of cars and flat roads-completely flat.  It is fun-I must say.

much more to follow this post. currently in a workshop at the lloyd hotel and cultural embassy at the other side of town near the harbor of amsterdam, (well, one of them).  After the workshop, will rent a bike for a bit to just bike around amsterdam and photograph a bit, and then off to Rotterdam.

No comments: