After coming to Amsterdam, I was perfecting my art of not keeping in touch. I too lazy to write detailed emails, or blogs.
So after almost 50 days, i wrote an email to a friend, then this intelligent idea of making a blog post out of it, arised. Its edited a bit, in best interest of the family audience.
So Alstublieft, Here you go:
Statutory warning: reading long mails may cause neck pain or compel you to reply.
I will be there on jan 26th. post poned the previous 7th jan by few weeks. Hope to make it this time. I am already missing the pollution, noises of the street, homefood, friends, crowds, traffic jams and the smells of bangalore. Here it almost like living inside a fridge, a little closer to the cooling pipes though.
I will need to come back soon, probably in a month or two, on long term work permit. Don’t know where I will end up in life !
New year was at Dam Square- the main fun center- a heavy crowd of girls and guys, either stoned or drunk, most of them carrying a bottle or pot, some with extra supplies in the cold winter air.
Live music of some rock band, and the whole crowd was dancing. Ending with a
countdown to the new year.
this week moving to new apartment with my team mates. looking for a place now. mostly near the present place. its forty minutes trip to office from here, using first a bus to the next metro station, Amstelveensweg, and from there metro to Vlugtlan. From Vlugtlan to
Haarlemmerweg by bus again. But the buses and metro frequencies are amazing. every 5 mins you have them. and most of them will have a few seats vacant. even at the peek hours. awesome infrastructure for travel. cant compare with our poor bangalore.
Update: moved to a new apartment, its a small cosy place. has two bedrooms, private balconies, living room and a small kitchen, fully furnished. so far, so good.
Heard bangalore was much colder this time ? After a few days of snow and white christmas, here now the temperature is better, around 5-6 degrees in day time with occassional cold breezes. But comfortable.
Last weekend had been to Paris. Wonderful place. Interesting historical places, add the trill of seeing Monalisa and Eiffel tower.
Louvre was simply grand. Prime example of how a meusium should be run. Its user friendly, professinal and very well managed.
After wandering around in the Richelieu wing watching some Eastern, Egyptian, Greek, Etruscan, and Roman Antiquities some Islamic Art, sculptures and Decorative Arts in the morning, I took the guided tour. An elderly lady, the guide, took us around the famous exhibits of Louvre, including the winged victory and the monalisa . interestingly, they call it Monna lisa, with an extra ‘n’ or Monna for short.
There was a heavy rush to see the painting, didnt matter to me much, maybe because I am not a major fan of hers.
Came back home by eurolines comfortable buses. And yes they play movies here too.
Previous night, we were at the Eiffel tower, the symbol of france- shooting skywards, which finds mention in DaVinci code, rather satireically, as “Symbologists often remarked that France-a country renowned for machismo, womanizing, and diminutive insecure leaders like Napoleon and Pepin the Short-could not have chosen a more apt national emblem than a thousand-foot phallus.”
Though we couldnt climb till the top floor and had to be contended with the 2nd floor instead, it was great experience. I would say none of the pictures represent the feel you get from up above there.
Church of Notre Dame, famous from that old school story,
The Hunchback of Notre Dame was an experience too. The ambience of the place demands slience and obeisance. As if you can touch the shadows of history in the dark air of the intensely decorated and high walled altar. A loud noise would disturb the sleeping souls and the wolfs of Paris killed in the steps of the church which was built as early as 1345.
Left France without even trying one thing that France is famous for. The French Kiss.
A couple of weeks before we were at Barcelona, Spain. I didnt have any idea what to expect at Barcelona, thanks to the busy and taking-up-all-my-time work at office. But its was a pleasant surprise. a warm and friendly place, language would be a slight problem though.
What interested me most was the historical monuments and the architecture of the old buildings like
La pederera. Gaudis masterpeices. of late all the new so called buildings are just ugly compared to the ones here.
Barcelona is a happening place with a lot of clubs, bars and bustling night life, even when the temparature of 2 degrees. Summer time is supposed to more fun with the beaches becoming active.
The Seven of us went to a night club here, after a heavy dinner at salamanca which ran to a bill which almost bankrupted us all. (I still can feel the shrill that went up my spine when I saw that !)
Roamed around in La Ramblas, the brigade road of Barcelona. Its a very vibrant and happening place. Statues which suddenly come to life(Street performers), flower shops, souvenir shops and the like.
Amsteelveen, where we stay, is a very calm and sleepy town. The shops open at 10, and close by 6. Wonder when these people do their shopping.
I love this place, this is what i see when i lookout from my bedroom window, yea but without color correction, ofcourse.
Amsterdam, the city center, is a happening place. On the christmas eve, I was walking past the windows when a cute young girl from behind the window wished me “Merry christmas”. Sad state to be in on a christmas eve, when everyone cuddle up in the warmth of their family.
I am taking a lot of photographs. I have bought a tripod too, for some night time long exposure photographs. Some of them are coming up good. Will send them soon.
Update: Heh ! i started writing this note a few days ago. Didnt get time to complete and send it. Work had been rather demanding in the past week. Some sadists call me on phone from India as early as 5.30 am !
Now thats almost what i have been upto after leaving bangalore. In the public interest, I guess i can post this as a blog.
The pictures are from the Paris trips – need to edit and upload the other pics, eventually.