Woke up late. Got a late start. It was muggy again today but this time it paid off. Walking in the rain through Amsterdam is dreamy. Borders on spiritual, I think. Treading through the red-light district when you’re the only one coming through the alleys is surreal. Each one telling you to approach. The gray soft light from the heavy overcast coupled with the red fluorescent tubes is ugly and hypnotic.
I can’t go anywhere else outside of Amsterdam. I try to. My intention was to stay in Amsterdam and then visit places just outside of it’s range like The Hague or Leiden. But every time I exit Amsterdam Centraal, I’m absorbed. I exit those doors and it calls me to wander. I’m obsessed with the city. But not it’s inhabitants.
The people who live and work in Amsterdam aren’t particularly friendly and I’ve been thinking about why that is. I think I understand it. Imagine working whatever is you do for a living and then imagine doing that job in the middle of Hollywood Blvd. during heavy tourist rush hour. Constant chaos. It has to be grating eventually. Amsterdam is historically rich but ultimately feels like a business. The whole city. Like a mini-America without the tension.
My next two locations are booked. I was contemplating an extended stay in Amsterdam but I can feel myself beginning to grow tired of it already. The same way I feel tired after three days in Vegas. It’s that sort of city. The rich architecture and museums and galleries are all wonderful obviously but, in the end, Amsterdam is Europe’s version of Las Vegas. But I can deal with Amsterdam longer than I can deal with Vegas. Vegas is bright, neon-lit lunacy. Amsterdam, at least, has some historical texture to it; More to chew.
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