I’d been itching for a jaunt across the Atlantic, so when one of my best friends asked if I wanted to come visit her in Amsterdam, who was I to turn down a vacation? I hadn’t been outside the country since I went to London at the end of 2014, and when you find a round-trip flight for $500, you jump on that shit.
As far as vacations go, this one was pretty great. While Amsterdam was never in my top five of cities I wanted to visit, it wound up being a really incredible week. The weather was beautiful, it was great to catch up with Kendra (who I hadn’t seen in a year and a half), and Amsterdam is a great city to be a tourist in. Pretty much everyone speaks English if you’re having a hard time, it’s not actually that big, and it’s totally walkable. The food is to die for, the streets are clean, and while there are definitely touristy areas, it never struck me as being overcrowded.
As you may or may not know, I have two degrees, one of which is in Art History. The Dutch have always produced some of my favorite work, and their art museums are heaven on earth. We took the train about an hour outside the city to The Hague to see my favorite painting of all time, Girl With The Pearl Earring. Needless to say, I got a little emotional.
One of my favorite things was the flower market. It floats along one of the canals and is open every day. It’s full of bulbs, flowers, various house plants, and souvenirs. I even felt brave enough to purchase a sunflower, although it’s probably already dead at this point. I’ve been known to kill numerous cacti in the past — my track record with green things is not good.
I also had a 17 hour pit stop in Iceland on the way back, and after that, I think I definitely need to go back. I wasn’t awake for most of the time I was there, but I did go on a walk before catching my flight, and even the tiny town I was holed up in was gorgeous.
It’s back to reality now, but I feel completely refreshed after a week away. Sometimes we all just need a break, you know?