Monday, September 26, 2011

old amsterdam

well this is my last night in amsterdam. i don't have much time to write (i'll have to get caught up later), but it's been an interesting week and a half. berlin was really nice. my work meetings and training went well, and i got to see, eat, and do some cool things there.

and amsterdam has been cool. today i went to the van gogh museum, which was great. i've loved his art for a long time, and it was so nice to go see so many of his paintings and to read the write-ups they had about him. i know a fair bit about him, but the written descriptions of him and his pieces were still very illuminating. i also had some indonesian food, a rijstaffel actually, at padi (thank, emily) tonight. it's strange being alone at times, but you figure out good strategies like taking a book or your journal along with you. that makes sitting in a restaurant by yourself not so lonely.

i'll write more later, but wanted to post something--albeit brief--before i left. tomorrow morning, i'll go for another walk around the neighborhood and then walk myself to the train stration to get to the airport. i don't fly out until 1:30 so that gives me a little more time tomorrow in beautiful old amsterdam.

finally, a note about this painting...van gogh painted several sunflower still lifes and hung them up in the room that he prepared for gauguin in vincent's house in france. he did this to make his friend, gauguin, feel more at home and comfortable. isn't that lovely? to think of a friend doing that to make you feel more comfortable in his home. cathy, kudos to you for having this picture in your home!

Monday, September 12, 2011

going away

this weekend i'll be going off to berlin again. i'm not very excited about the long flight again, but i am excited to travel again. i'll have 1.5 days to myself in berlin, plus 5 work days there. this time around i'd like to go to the checkpoint charlie place, the jewish museum (i can't remember the exact name), and a new market area that's supposed to have quirky things.

on my way back home, i'm going to stop for a few days in amsterdam to poke around. i found a place to stay (two actually) for three nights for $200. i think that's good for a major european city! especially given that i don't like sharing a room with 5-20 women in a hostel too much. i have my eyes on several museums there, walking along the cannals, going to some markets, eating good indonesian food, etc. i'm looking forward to hanging out and relaxing for a few days there. the only thing that would make it better is if brian could be there with me.