Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Amsterdam is interesting...

Architecturally, Amsterdam is a beautiful city. As much as I enjoy seeing the big cities like Paris, London, Madrid...I really love wandering pretty, smaller towns. Amsterdam fits that bill. The canals, the colorful buildings, and all the bikes make it fun to see.

My friend Stef (from Australia, but we met in Salamanca) met me in Amsterdam for the afternoon, which made it that much sweeter!

Call me a prude, but that being said, I think the famous (perhaps infamous?) Red Light district (which is highlighted on any city map) and the lifestyle it promotes detracts from the beauty of the city. That, and the smell of pot wherever you go. Let's just say Amsterdam isn't a city I would put on the itinerary for a family vacation...

It does hold the Secret Annex, where Anne Frank, her family, and two other families hid during the Nazi occupation and WWII. Having read her diary many times, being in the rooms made it much more real for me. It was no longer a story, but a reality. I want to reread her diary, because I was reminded of her strength and hope for such a young girl in such a horrible situation. And to think that there were people in situations 1,000 times worse!

Next stop: Berlin!

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