Thursday, May 03, 2001


Went to the Floating Palace Chinese restaurant for supper last night. Very nice restaurant, but very expensive. We were going to get a Chinese dinner for 4 for 110 gilders ($85.00 approx.), until Ryan notices that that price was PER PERSON!! Yikes!!! We just ordered individually, which was quite a bit cheaper, but still expensive.

After that, we walked to the train statino where we were going to meet Colleen, Michelle, Scott, Ben, and Cara, some other Canadians we met. We had met Colleen, Michelle and Scott in Brugge. While we were waiting, we witnessed the Amsterdam police force in full force! There was this black guy causing a little bit of commotion, and these two cops were trying to calm him down or something, and he got upset, and started swinging his fists at the cops. Well, the cops got out their billy clubs and started beating on this guy, in the meantime, one of the cops radioed for backup, and before you know it, police were coming out of the woodwork, like you wouldn't believe! Within 5 minutes, there must have been 30 cops there! It was unreal. I should note the female to male ratio of police officers in Amsterdam, must be 70% female, 30% male. They have A LOT of female cops here.

Anyway, when the other Canadian's showed up, we walked around the Red Light District for a while, went to a Greek restaurant/bar and had a drink, then back to the hostel.

We had planned on going to The Haugge (sp?) today, but no one except me heard my alarm, and we all woke up late. I woke up when it went off at 7:00, but no one else got up, so I thought, "If no one else is getting up, I'm not getting up either!", and we all slept in. So Neil, Ryan and I took the train to Nijmegen to see the Canadian War Cemetery and the Canadian War Museum. We had to walk about 2 km to get the cemetery. This was a personal thing for Ryan, as his dad's uncle is buried here. Ryan found the gravesite and took pictures and placed a Canadian flag in the ground at the gravesite.

Got back to Amsterdam and we met Colleen, Michelle and Scott at the Hard Rock Cafe for supper. Then went down to the main square for their Remembrance Day ceremony. We missed the first half hour, which was unfortunate. Tomorrow is a holiday in Holland, Liberation Day, it marks the day the Allies (Canadians specifically, I believe) liberated Holland from the Germans.

Colleen, Michelle and Scott trammed it back to their hostel, which is actually just on the other side of the park from our hostel. Compared to their hostel, we're staying in a 5-star hotel! Theirs is a DIVE! You can smell the pot when you walk in to their hostel, ours is big, clean and awesome (and more expensive!)

We walked back to the hostel, under protest from Ryan, who wanted to go party, but me and Neil are simply beat. We couldn't keep our eyes open coming back on the train from Nijmegen. I must have had a poor sleep last night or something, and Neil, well, he's always sleeping anyway.

Just a note about the Holland people. They all speak English, and excellent English at that. No one should have any fear of coming to Holland and not being able to communicate. It's the complete opposite of France, where if you don't know French, your SOL.

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