The second stage of our trip has brought us to Amsterdam. The Dutch capital is renowned for its coffee shops and Red Light District, but there’s a few behind-the scenes experience worth living too.
Following a hectic Saturday night of bar-hopping, we hit the streets again to spread the word about ExperienceLess. We started off by camping out with our signs on a corner of Leidseplein Square, right alongside a friendly Russian painter who was busy working away in water colors. She clued us onto the fact that this square was a real tourist haven, and if we were looking for something else, we should head over to Vondelpark. So, off we went.
Once there, we parked our bikes under an oak tree as old as the city itself. Michael, a thirty-something native of Amsterdam, stopped to chat with us. We explained to him just what it means to be “experience-less” and he proceeded to point out a few of his favorite hideaways on a map. Among other hotspots, he recommended that we hit D.helsststraat, an area known for its 100% Dutch bars.
Just about when we’d filled our Moleskines full of new experiences, a young Dutch boy named Niels came over, introduced himself and told us he had been living in the capital city for awhile. He, also, took an interest in our movement. After listening to us explain the whys and wherefores of ExperienceLess in fine detail, he invited us to his house for dinner. We had a great time together, sharing with him and his buddies some not-to-be-forgotten Tandoori chicken, Serrano ham, good wine and equally good conversation. As a digestive, everyone participated in an extended session of Frisbee which ended in the wee hours and served as the topping on the cake to a perfect night.
Someone once said that a trip is not measured in the kilometers one travels, but in the number of friends one makes. Well, if that’s true, we now count at least four new friends in Amsterdam , who we’ll gladly show how to live San Sebastian, our home-base, whenever they want.