22 April 2009

Bikes, Canals + Red Lights

Today was amazing. LB + I just did two things I've always wanted to do: visit the Anne Frank House + walking around Amsterdam's Red Light District. LB + I walked our asses off, absolutely smitten by Amsterdam's canals, virtually run over twice by speedsters on old bikes + then later on, we watched in fascination as groups of drunk men went shopping for kicks, yelling comments at especially attractive prostitutes. We even saw two German boys bargain with a large black woman:

--We want a show.
--I'll give you both a show then.
--But we want good show.
And then they disappeared into her little love cubicle.

Another conversation I heard later on as we passed girls pivoting in windows was in German this time, but I understood what they were saying anyways since they used so many cognates. It went something like this:

--Did you really like her?
--She looked like your mother.
--No, she didn't.
--Yes, she looked like your mother.

No Freudian analysis necessary. . .

So, here are the pictures of our day, a perfect, dynamic walking narrative through history + culture as we approached--one step at a time--that beautiful and contradictory nature of Dutch society which makes this city so clean, beautiful, charming + open. A visual testament:

The View from our Bedroom
Canals 1
Rembrandtplein 1
Rembrandtplein 2
Wooden Clogs
Bikes in the Alley
Flower Market 1
Flower Market 2
Flower Market 3
Flower Market 4
Rembrandtplein 3
Bikes 2
Streets 1
Streets 2
Canals 2
Streets 3
Canals 3
Bikes 3
One Beautiful Random Door that Isn't Random at All
Streets 4
Canals 4
Anne Frank House 1
Our Ticket to History
Anne Frank House 2
Anne Frank House 3
Streets 5
It's Not Really a Museum, as it Turned out
LB, Deep in Thought about her Future G-Star Purchase
A Little Café on Prisengracht Street
Café 2
My Next Outift
Next to the Anne Frank Huis
Canal 5
Street 6
Bikes 4
As LB + I Were Walking to the Biomarkt, We Passed This + I Laughed So Loud. It Says: Homo Sapiens Non Urinat in Ventum. Or, a thinking man doesn't piss in the wind. So Random
Street 6
Canal 6
The View from Our Window at Night
I Wanted this Little Scooter So Bad
Wax Obama
Street 7
Street 8
Entering the Red Light District
There's One Word You See Over + Over Again in the RLD
It's Called the I Love You Shop
This Great Condom Store
With Condoms in the Shape of Animals + City Icons (Out of Photograph: the Eiffel Tower Condom)
Moulin Rouge Swank House
Not for the Faint of Heart
In the Middle of Everything
One of Many Live Sexshows
Another Beautiful Street in the Middle of the RLD
Canal 7
It's Hard to Make out The Sign, but This is the Marijuana/Hash/Hemp Museum
For Hardcore Smokers
Streets 9
Nirvana Island in a Sea of 15-Minute Lovers
Looks Kinda like the State Fair, and Probably Just As Safe as the Ferris Wheel
One of Many Dark Alleys Filled with Prostitutes
Alley 2
Alley 3
Where all the Magic Happens
More Smokeshops between Red Alleys
Don't We All Feel This Way after Getting Some Action?
The End of the Red Light District
Before the City Fair
LB Pointed out That This Was Phallic. . . Contextually, Yes
The Flag of Netherlands
Graffiti near Rembrandtplein
Streets 10

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