This week, I spent a lot of time catching up my life in Amsterdam. Since I have been traveling almost every weekend, I haven’t really had the chance to stop and enjoy myself here. I have come to the realization this weekend that traveling and being a tourist is incredibly draining. When you are traveling to a different city or a different country every weekend, you are literally trying to do everything in less than three days. I now know that that is completely not my thing. How can you really enjoy a place and get a feel for it if you’re constantly moving from attraction to attraction? Although it is so easy to get caught up in all the travel and closeness of all the countries in Europe, it has always been my goal to really get to know my own city, Amsterdam. Thus, after a weekend in Belgium and a whole week in Italy, I was completely exhausted from traveling, not to mention, sick. When I came back to Amsterdam, I decided that I just want to stay here forever. Of course, that is me being slightly dramatic as I have a trip to Prague planned for next weekend and I have made plans to see a Manchester United game in England in early May. I think that is all I will do and see, until school is officially over on May 22nd. After that, I can backpack around Europe or hang out in Amsterdam until I fly home on June 30th, so long as my wallet permits it.
This weekend, two of Sara’s friends from Florence, Marie and Thalia came to visit as well as my sorority sister and friend Allegra. I have been running around all weekend around the city, showing these kids around. Having friends visit finally gave me a reason to go see all the sights in Amsterdam, see a museum, and do all the touristy things. We saw the I Amsterdam letters, Van Gogh museum, Heineken Experience, and the Red Light District all in two days. It has been a blast, but I am quite worn out.
I finally feel like I belong in this city, like I am no longer just temporarily visiting. I have been biking everywhere, taking in the fresh, crisp air and watching the canals pass by with every ride. It is the most beautiful and peaceful feeling. It was going to happen sooner or later, but I have also finally had my first bad fall. This was only last night too, so it is all still pretty fresh in my mind. I wish I had battle scars to show you all, but apparently I caught myself pretty well after flying off my bike and skidding onto the other side of the street. The only pain now is in my knee, after smashing that well into the ground. I got back on and we continued on with our night’s adventure. I honestly felt nothing until we got to Melkweg, probably due to all the adrenaline. Nonetheless, I am getting quite acquainted with this city and I’m loving it. It is so weird to think that I have only been here for five weeks, because it feels like I have been here for so much longer.
**This post deserves a pretty sappy ending, but unfortunately I can’t deliver.