Today in Amsterdam

Today I went to see my friend Ginni at her school.  First we had lunch on Haarlemmerdijk then went to talk about web sites and shops and html code and stuff like that.  As I walked down the street to meet her I took this photo of a shop window.  It’s actually an eyeglass shop. You’d never know it by looking in their window.  The cat is always there, no matter what the other decorations are.

Ginni and I also talked about shopping.  Neither of us likes to shop for clothes.  It’s not fun to always be faced with the fact that your figure isn’t what it used to be and all the clothes in shops are designed and sized for the figure you no longer have.  Shoes, however, are another story.  I don’t mind shopping for shoes.  My legs are my best feature, despite their lack of length.  On my way home from Ginni’s I decided to stop into a shop on Haarlemmerdijk and bought these –

I’d say it was a very successful afternoon in Amsterdam!


Friends in Amsterdam

Yesterday I met up with two groups of friends in Amsterdam.  First I went to a talk by Dr. Herbert Puchta at Cambridge University Press.  The topic was “Bored students? Try Emotional Engagement!”.  It was interesting, but frankly having just finished a CELTA course, his ideas and suggestions were not much different from what we had been practicing for 12 weeks.  The best part about going to the event was meeting up with 3 CELTA colleagues!  We went for a drink afterwards and walked a bit through the center of Amsterdam.

That’s me in the pink jacket, optimistically thinking the weather would be warm into the evening.

Ivana really wanted this photo!  Here you go!

At the end of the afternoon I headed to the public library to hang out and wait for my other friends to end their work day and go to dinner.  We went to Casa di David where we met up with another friend who isn’t working any more.  Here are photos of my friends.  There isn’t a photo of me because I can’t keep my eyes open when faced with a flash.  Seriously.  I just can’t.  It’s a reflex I can’t stop and makes for a really lousy photo.

The food was pretty good, but not great, and it was expensive for what you get.  The best part of the meal was the starter.  We got the special di David which is a little bit of everything.  Most of the plate was covered with food that wasn’t actually cooked, just good ingredients laid out.  I guess that’s what they are good at?  I had zeeduivel (gosh, what is that in English? Monk fish.  I had to look it up) which was obviously frozen for a long while.  The texture wasn’t that of a very fresh fish.  The least impressive was dessert.  I had pannacotta which had chocolate sauce over the top and whipped cream on top of that.  The pannacotta itself was tasteless.  The chocolate sauce was cheap stuff out of a bottle and there was way too much whipped cream.  Ah well.  Someone else had tiramisu and it was the best dessert we had.  I’ll have to put a review on  If you want reliable restaurant reviews for the Netherlands, use that site.

It was a fun day out and great to see friends in Amsterdam.  Sometimes I wonder why we moved to Haarlem when I spend so much time going back to Amsterdam.  But then I remember the dunes and the beach and my little patch of garden and my attic space in the house and know that it was the right decision.