28 juillet-- Amsterdam et lundi á Paris

Paris Travel Blog

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My weekend was pretty cool; we went to Amsterdam, the Netherlands, which was neat. Lots of wacky people there, since prostitution is legal and so is pot (well, somewhat- in small quantities and in certain places). My weekend went as thus:
25 July-
Left for Amsterdam on the train at 10:26 am. It was a fine ride. Me, Amanda, and Marie sat next to a guy named Victor who was from Seattle I believe (although originally from Mexico). He was nice, and doing the whole Eurotrip thing. We got the Amsterdam about 2:30 and by the time we got a tram pass and got to the hostel on the Tram it was about 3:30. Marie and I got checked in, but apparently Amanda accidentally booked at a different Stayokay hostel in Amsterdam instead of the one we were at. We went with her to find her hostel which ended up with us walking through total sketchville for a while (luckily, it was the middle of the day). But we made it there fine.

After that, we decided to eat at the Hard Rock Cafe Amsterdam which was right next to Marie's and my hostel. It was sooooo good. Marie and I both got the twisted macaroni and cheese with chicken (she got mushrooms on hers though) and we also had 2 for 1 cocktail coupons from the Amsterdam Tourist's guide. I had 2 Bahama Mama's and they were delicious. We were also serenaded to many awesome songs including the Beatles, Meatloaf, and Billy Idol. After dinner, we went to the Anne Frank House which was really interesting but sad. There were lots of videos of surviving people from the whole Secret Annex deal, and pictures and newspapers and stuff from the time. There was a video of her dad from the sixties when he was almost 80 and it almost made me cry. For those of you who don't know, he is the only one in the family who survived the concentration camps: Anne, her sister Margot, and their mother all died in them, as did the other four people who were hidden in the house with them.

Then we decided to go for a walk in the red light district. As they say, it's all fun and games until someone gets hurt, and that someone is usually me. Of course, I was right on time! A guy was proclaiming to the world about a student discount for a strip show (which of course was hilarious, since nothing else in amsterdam, none of the museums or anything, give student discounts) so I turned to look at him as I was walking and BAM. Face and knee, meet street lamp pole. I nearly broke my glasses (they almost fell off) and I had an ENORMOUS knot on my forehead all night and part of the next day. I've still got a bit of a bump now, and a yellow-y bruise that takes up a quarter of my forehead on the right side. It's lovely, let me tell you. Anyway, so after crying thoroughly, and calling my mom and crying some more, we made it back to the Tram stop and got back to the hostel. I got some ice from the bar downstairs (yes, there is a bar in the hostel) and put it on my head for a while. Then I went to sleep.

26 July-
We met Amanda at 10:00am Saturday morning in Dam Square, where we decided to go in Madame Tussaud's wax museum. Apparently, we missed the part of the sign which said "Live action! Scary pirates!" (probably because it had a huge picture of Johnny Depp on it). So we get in, and the first part is about Dutch history in the golden age (17th century), with William of Orange and such. Then we get to the Pirate part and there's a pirate guy kneeling in front of this pirate girl. It looked pretty cool so I took a picture of it. I turned around to continue walking and the pirate guy JUMPED UP. HE WAS REAL HOLY CRAPOLA. Yeah, it was scary. Then, we went in the other part where there was a chick behind bars and all of a sudden she jumped through them at us! Eventually, we made it out of that part alive to the "normal" part of Madame Tussaud's, which is the area with the the celebrity wax figures. Of course we took lots of pictures of our favorites. There were some that were the same as when I went to the MT's in New York 3 years ago, like the Spice Girls and Ghandi, but many were different. It was pretty cool.
After that, we ran into Drew and some of his friends (half of our program was in Amsterdam last weekend) and decided to go to a "coffeeshop".
Again, for those that don't know, "coffeeshops" are the establishments where it is legal to sell weed. Basically, they will sell you pot for the price of a coffee. Yes, we bought a (pre-rolled) joint and yes we smoked it. When in Amsterdam, and all. To be honest, it was nothing special and was basically done for the experience of having done it. Afterwards, it was about 1:30pm and thus lunchtime. We ate at a little place where I got chicken nuggets and fries actually. It was pretty good. After lunch, we left Drew and his friends and went to the Rijksmuseum which is the national museum of Holland, I think. Anyway, it has alot of famous Dutch painters like Rembrandt and Vermeer in it. It was 10 euros to get into though, and no pictures allowed which is ridiculous. I bought a postcard of the most famous painting there, "Night Watch" by Rembrandt. It's cool, but I wasn't that impressed. Here's a link: http://www.artcam.cz/upload/obrazek/thumb/45f94816d77c1.night-watch-rembrandt.jpg
After that museum, we had authentic Dutch Waffles (mine came with ice cream, Marie's with chocolate syrup) and they were delicious. Then we were going to go to the Van Gogh museum but it was 12.50 euros and yet again, no pictures, so I decided not to go in (I boycotted because that is just too ridiculous of a price for me to go and then have to buy stuff in the gift shop afterward to remember what I saw). After that we went back to the hostel and dropped off our souvenirs, and then we went to the sexmuseum. It was AMAZING. AND only 3 euros. AND you could take pictures of everything. Unfortunately, most of it is extremely explicit porn (although really hilarious explicit porn) so I cannot post it to facebook or LJ. If you really care to see pictures of "Deep Throat", a flasher, many stone phalluses, or statues of a demon with a huge dick, leave me a comment and I'll email some to you. If I know you in real life, trust me when I say you will be able to see them in person when I get back.
That night we ate at a decently priced italian place. My food was alright, although it had too many green noodles in it for my liking. After that, we got another walk through the red light district and finally saw the Bulldog (the most famous "coffeeshop" in Amsterdam). I snapped a pic of the sign before the guy yelled at us that there was no photo-taking allowed. I wish I could've gotten some pictures of the prostitutes in their windows, but it's illegal to take pictures of them. It's so hilarious though; they rent windows where they stand there in skimpy outfits, in a blacklight, clothes glowing in it, trying to entice men to buy them. It's like they're mannequins almost, but instead of selling clothes, they're selling sex. It's a reasonable idea though. Most of them belong to a union, and they definitely rake in the cash if they're good/pretty enough. Most of them were decent looking too. I saw one that was probably pushing 45 and another who was fat, but the rest were thin, relatively attractive women (although, obviously somewhat skanky looking with too much makeup and not enough clothes). All the windows, of course, are lit with red lights, which is where the area gets its name. Pictures from Amsterdam are here: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2254037&l=70faf&id=7017887 (part 1) and here: http://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2254371&l=56b64&id=7017887 (part 2)

27 July-
We left on the train back to Paris at 9:30am and got back around 1:30pm. I slept part of the way on the train, though not the entire time. After we got back, we came back to the dorm and I planned to watch the Tour de France on tv. However, I ended up falling asleep on the couch downstairs in front of the tv. I did wake up in time to see the end of it though, which was cool. I wasn't really that excited about it since there were no Americans in the top, anyway. If there had been, I probably would have gone to try and see it in person. But it was cool to watch on tv. A spanish guy won, in case you didn't know. The spaniards are winning everything this year: Euro 2008 (the european soccer cup), Wimbledon (Rafael Nadal), and then this guy (whose name I don't remember). I'm sure you could google it to find out but I'm too lazy. Anyway, Sunday we did not do much of anything after getting back except rest.

28 July-
Today, we had class all day, morning and afternoon (normally we have afternoons on tuesday, but since tomorrow is the last day of class the afternoon course was moved to today). Class was fine, kinda boring since we have already taken our finals and everything. I did get my final back though and i made a 15.5/20 which is really good on the french system (10/20 is passing, 13+ is a B, 16+ is an A). That made me feel alot better because I did really bad on one of my other two tests (13/20 on the first, but uh... let's just say less than 10/20 on the other one... it was really hard!). Hopefully, this means I will get at least a B grade from Dr Morris. Knowing him he will probably give most of us A's anyway.
After class we hung out in the dorm until dinner. After dinner, Marie and I went to the Arc de Triomphe and went up to the top. Of course it is a long climb on stairs. However, it's really pretty at the top. I got some pictures but they are not uploaded yet because we didn't get back til after 10pm.

Tomorrow is the last day of class and our last full day in Paris! I can't believe it has gone by so fast and I am going back to the US on Wednesday! I will be really sad to leave Paris, and I'm already plotting on how to get back over here next summer, but I will be glad to see Auburn people, my mom, and Dr. Pepper again at least. And not have to pay like $4 for a coke.
The plan for tomorrow includes the Moulin Rouge, Pere Lachaise cemetery, possibly a skip over to the Eiffel tower one last time (to sit in front of it) and some last minute souvenir shopping (I need to get my mom one more thing, and I still need a Paris t-shirt pour moi).

SO anyway, that is my weekend plus monday! See you all VERY soon!!!!
Au revoir!
emmllerg says:
Enjoy your next vacation to Paris
Posted on: Jun 02, 2013
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photo by: Sweetski