Well, I’m home safe and sound thanks to US Airways. Which, while they were nicer than United, I’ll probably choose United next time because no one should have to fly 8 hrs in a Boeing 757. All in all it was a great trip. I was just disappointed that it was so short. (Note to boss, longer trips to Europe are better!) :)
Jet lag and sickness prevented me from enjoying this trip as much as I would have wanted to. I was up all night Thursday night with a headache and upset stomach so Friday, I didn’t get to go to iBuildings. They had asked me to come talk about my Nerd Herding article and I was really looking forward to it. However, by Friday evening I was feeling much better and Ivo, took a few of us out for dinner.
Saturday broke early but I was prepared having forced myself to sleep early. The conference was amazing. I’m just sorry that jet lag forced me to bail early. It was great seeing Kevlin Henny again, I love his presentation “Objects of Desire”. Even though we experienced a few technical difficulties, once things got up and running, all was grand. I got to see Gayord’s presentation and Lukas’ before I had to either leave or fall asleep in a session. (Which would have been impolite)
After a few hours of nap, I headed back out on the town for more food and a lot of people watching. Amsterdam is a great place for people watching. :)
Finally, Sunday arrived. Since I stayed up way too late Saturday night (my body takes a few days to adjust to time zone changes) I got a late start on sight-seeing. I did however take a Canal Boat tour. Amsterdam is beautiful from canal level, even if the water does scare me a bit. (it’s not, shall we say, clean?) I took the tram down to Central station and caught one of the many excursions leaving from there. It was a great way to spend the afternoon. I do wish wife 1.24, the lovely and talented Kathy had been able to come with me as I know she would have loved it. (alas, she had to stay home with the yungin’s and the dawgs)
The architecture of the city is what struck me most. Unlike other European cities, Amsterdam does not have a lot of large, old buildings. It has a few, like the Royal Palace but by-in-large, the old buildings in the city are warehouses or houses. They are however, an ecclectic mix ranging from the 1500’s up through modern times. To me, the modern buildings in the old part of the city, distract from the beauty of the rest though. (IMHO, etc.) It’s amazing to see some of the buildings that have been there a while because they lean. Some of the old houses actually lean forward because of settling. (Amsterdam is built on a marsh) The other thing that struck me is I’ve never seen so much construction in one city. Everywhere you turn there is something being built or renovated. It was amazing.
All in all, it was a great trip. I met some cool people, saw some new sites. I would love to go back when I could spend 6 months or so because I didn’t get to spend nearly enough time in the Van Gogh museum and I really want to take one of the Rhein tours.
That’s all for now.
Until next time,