I have an hour to kill before I can officially check into my room, so I’ve already done some wandering. Now I’ve grabbed a croissant and some tea from the breakfast nooky action with the comfy couches and huge tv with burning log film and come back upstairs to the bar to convey how freakin cool it is here!
I hear that Bruges is like a “f**king fairy tale” to quote Ralph Fiennes from In Bruges, but Amsterdam is definitely clost in that, being all Hollish and International. People walking everywhere with luggage, all different restaurants next to each other, rather than in their own neighborhoods. Coo old buildings, waaaaaay less dirty than Paris. Even the pigeons seem healthier. It seems as though nothing opens too early. Some of the bakeries, that’s only natural. But some of the souvenir shops as well. Most other businesses show up and start getting things clean, ready, but I wandered back here by 930 and most places had the shutters halfway up, or were washing the windows.
The streets are starting to fill, cyclists everywhere! Bikes everywhere! Oh, it’s so delicious with awesome bikes! And it’s entirely likely that’s enough from me for now. I’d love to check into my room, lock up my stuff and pass out for a while. Of course I slept on the bus, you can’t sleep on a bus, you don’t have no business planning a trip around Europe on ’em. I tend to be of the boots off, legs up the window, hair drifting into the aisle a little bit, just enough to register when luggage gets heaved past, not enough to get thwacked in the head bus sleeping variety. It’s a technique I perfected after years of riding the citybus from colwood into town, which is 40 minutes of discovering new ways to sleep on the bus, do something just unusual enough to freak out the squares and ensure no one sits next to you. Ha! Not when the bus is full of course, I have enough compassion for that.
Ooh, and on the bus coming here there was movies! Two strange choices, Serendipity, a real romantic-y feel-y good thing about synchrousness in love. All John Cusack sensitive and Kate Beckinsale…y. Then followed by Brotherhood of the Wolf, a french martial arts movie with giant werewolves and secret orders led by (yummy) Vincent Cassel as a mutated badass with a sword that become a flail at the most opportune of moments. And dogfights and vengeful women and (also yummy) monica belluci and native american visionquests. With Dutch subtitles! It was an everything in one movie movie. I didn’t watch it though. I fell asleep with my legs up the window.
Editors note: it’s always better to get a seat with a window edge, so that when you are really and truly asleep your legs will slide and hold against it. If you don’t have a seat like this, I recommend crosslegged up the window because the blood will still flow easily, but you won’t crick your neck trying to fit your whole body on too small seats.
So far, I’ve met some people here, it seems as though the majority of people I’ve talked to work here, all different accents and linguisms and there must be a lot of people who work here. I think there’s a possibility they do a bit of a work exchange thing for rooms. The smallest room is shared by 4 people, we’ll see how that works out. I checked for one night because seriously, I’m in Amsterdam. Even if I end up taking furious advantage of Ingmar’s hospitality and stay with him for far too long, I have to do at least one hostel in Amsterdam thing. And as far as it goes, I think I’ve found one of the lusciously zany ones, first try, by accident. I took a left turn at Alberquerque and here I am.
Of course I’ve already met the typical americans in amsterdam getting as loopy and wasted as one can while here, which is excessive. And yes they are complete jackasses who come up with the lamest lines tryin to impress all the cute 20 somethings staying/working here (You’re too pretty to work here…Can I have a hug?), telling the stories about how wrecked they were last night and trashed the scooters they rented while being idiots in the red light district trying haphazardly to pick up prostitutes and how they almost hooked up with this girl but she turned out to be a lesbian with a boyfriend. Yeah, I’m sure she did.
Seriously. Seriooooouuuuusssssslly. Duuuuuuuuude.
There’s always that impulse to let people know that they don’t have to be a jackass all the time. But then it’s reasoned out of being by the idea that just because I don’t feel compelled to follow the path of jackassery on a minute by minute basis, doesn’t give me the right to tell someone else that it’s not the path for him either.
Funnily enough, there’s a line in In Bruges where Brendan Gleeson meets a guy who says after admitting that he’s american ‘Don’t hold it against me.’
“I’ll try. Just don’t do anything too loud or crass.”