04 May 2015

Amsterdam by abbieredmon

4/5

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In spite of the persistent forecasts, I woke up to another sunny day.

I celebrated by returning to the De Pjip neighborhood and having a fancy-schmancy breakfast at Anne&Max, one of the hip cafés that had been slammed on the sunny Saturday before.

It was quiet this morning, and I enjoyed a delicious egg & spinach concoction with what looked like home-made bread. (I don't usually eat bread, but I made an exception for this partly because I was really hungry, and partly because it looked really good.)

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I had intended to rent a bike from the friendly Greek couple again while in the De Pjip neighborhood, but I walked over from my breakfast at Anne&Max to find them closed for the day, so I had to readjust my plan.

I instead rented a faithful steed from Black Bikes Amsterdam, at a rate that was one euro cheaper than the Greek couple, but the service was delivered with much less of a smile. They have locations all over the city, though, and the best opening hours of all the bike rental places (usually 8a-8p!).

After biking around almost the entire city at an absolutely ludicrous pace for a sightseeing tourist, I finally collapsed into a cafe in the historic Jordaan neighborhood called 't Smalle, which is hilarious to me, because who begins the name of anything with an apostrophe-t?

I had the "warm meatballs," which were indeed warm, and actually quite good. The outdoor seating was all taken, so I sat inside, but it was a charming interior, and I didn't mind. (Of course I took no photos of it.)

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When sufficient time had passed for it to be acceptable for me to eat again, I had dinner at Foodism, a well-reviewed spot on the edge of the Jordaan that lived up to its hype. The menu is tapas-style, with some full-size mains on the specials menu.

I had the lamb special (does anyone else sense a trend?) and enjoyed it immensely.

The interior of this place (which of course I do not have a photo of) is really nice, but it is small, so were I dining later, or as a party of more than one, I would have been wise to make a reservation (take note, future visitors).

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Monday and Tuesday (mostly Tuesday, but also Monday?) were holidays in Amsterdam -- celebrating their independence or something like that.

So, the king and queen came to Dam Square for a little "event" -- there was some military faffing, and then two minutes of silence at exactly 8 p.m. Almost on cue, as the two minutes began, two babies near me began wailing. It was actually hilarious, but I was trying to respect the occasion by putting on the appropriate stoicism -- and not laughing.

When the two minutes of silence were over, there was a bit of bugle-trumpeting, then everyone immediately dispersed with very little fanfare, really. It was kind of an odd ceremony. No one seemed very moved by it, but EVERYONE was there.

I took no photos because I could see nothing. (I'm not sure there was anything to see.)