Hopped off our transfer coach at Rotterdam and headed into the city of Amsterdam. The journey took about 90 mins and to be honest I nodded off but I did see windmills, that maybe did house a little mouse with clogs on, singing on stairs, I was very happy about that. The countryside I did see was quite beautiful, but as we were meeting really good friends in Amsterdam, I was just hanging out for that.
We arrived in to Amsterdam, a very busy place, but absolutely gorgeous. Our next challenge was find our accommodation. We stayed just on the fringe of the city in Pijp, we booked through Air B&B with Iris and got a very reasonable rate. So after 20 mins on tram 4 we arrived, our accommodation was in an old house, up two flights of kamikaze stairs, seriously the stairs are mad, tiny and steep, but our room was very comfortable and we had our own bathroom. We dumped our stuff and then walked back towards the city, over canals and along the streets lined with tall houses and trees, I was very taken with this place. We arrived at Rembrandt Place and stopped for a drink to call Simone and Andy to let them know where we were. It wasn’t long before they arrived, it’s always amazing catching up with people when there are at least a couple of years in between, so much to catch up on yet as though you have never been apart.
After a couple of drinks the decision was made, we would hire a boat, not a boat with peddles but one with a motor. We asked at a shop where this would be possible, directions were given, misinterpreted and not at all followed, and so about a 5km hike was pursued, but we did after much walking and whining find the hire boats only to be told there were none available and to find that we were in fact only 2 minutes away from where we had started. Still the wander through the city was pleasant, it was a hot day, the sun was shining, people were out and about, life is good.
Catching up with old friends does mean that frivolity is a must, so we sang with Ronaldo, he was asking for money and explaining he spent time picking up rubbish off the streets. We did some kerbside yoga and played a very serious match of ping pong, until the ball seemed to disappear into thin air. Alan and Simone were the champions, but Andy and I definitely presented a much more entertaining game.
Our fun filled entertaining day concluded with a kebab, yes such class, but someone has to do it. We grabbed a cab home, stepped out the cab to a crash of thunder and the heavens opening and after negotiating the keys we managed to get in to our accommodation, kamikaze stairs posed no threat as we headed up to our room to rest our weary heads.