Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Charlie's Angels Meets Amster-DAYAM!

The anticipation of my first real trip while in Florence kept me from getting any shuteye the night before my departure. My thursday started off with sleeping late, running a few errands, and some procrastinating packing. As 2 a.m. approached us, Emily, Paige and I got our last minute belongings together, ate a quick "breakfast" and went outside to await for the cab we called ahead for. Our excitement may have gotten the best of us, specifically Paige, as she continually kept calling the taxi service asking where our cab was because we had a 3:35 a.m. bus to catch to the Pisa airport. This happened to the point where the woman on the other line replied in her heavy accent, "ah ok, you want cancel, ah ok" then hung up abruptly. At this point, we all got a little frazzled and all three of us on our cells trying to get a taxi ASAP! Finally we realized via dei pepi 73 was no longer a destination they were interested in, so I requested a cab for a street about 5 min. down the street. As soon as we started walking, a taxi came. This is what I would consider one of those "you had to be there moments", but I'll try anyways. My lovely blonde roommate Paige starts sprinting back carrying her huge carry-on waving her hands in the air frantically screaming down the street, I was laughing so hard I legit could not walk, nevermind run. Finally, we're in the cab, only to approach Santa Croce, where conveniently enough a number of drunk American students approach the cab, wanting its services. Some stupid American Boy, who was actually pretty cute :X, got pissed, and kicked the cab. Great. So our cute (in a cute old man sorta way) driver takes his glasses off his balding head, puts them in his pocket on the front of his shirt and is headed out to handle this boy that keeps true to why everyone hates Americans. ughh. In an extreme panic of us missing our bus, Paige pleads with the driver, finally he gets back in the car, feeling grateful and relieved, she responds, "Mi Dispice...Loco". If you know any of the Italian language, I'm sorry is Mi Dispiace, and crazy is not loco... that would be spanish. Again, may be one of those moments, but we exploded in laughter. We finally reach the bus stop. Paige didn't get her ticket ahead of time, and somehow managed to sweet talk her way onto the bus, and was the only one who did so without a ticket ahead of time. thank god. We arrive at the airport only to approach this woman who I'll refer to as "La Spiaggia" (you figure it out). Of all the people, we would have to deal with this woman, thank you RyanAir. We get on our plane, a decent flight, arrive in the Netherlands, get on another bus and head for Amsterdam. So, tired. Clearly. Took a little nap, and waited for our hosts to pick us up at central station. We dropped off our belongings and headed out for our first day.

We rented bikes at some cute caffe, had an amazing lunch, and went to the Anne Frank Museum, which was an indescribable experience to be in a place where so much history took place and people all over the world know about. After that, we hopped back on our bikes, only to experience some insane weather. First a drizzle, then a down pour, then hale... not cool. We stopped at another cafe` with no place to put our bikes, so obviously we made one. We didn't feel bad. But we were extremely paranoid they were going to be stolen so we were a bit exteme when it came to locking them up. Got back on our bikes, headed back to the apartment, in which our host made us a fantastic dinner. Then put on our dancing shoes and headed to club Home. Had a great time, but we were so tired. Woke up the next morning ready for a new day, went to the Van Gogh museum, which I surprisingly really enjoyed. Then the magic happened. We went to a "saks5thavenue" type department store. When I tell you it was love at first sight, there's no exaggeration. We went to the cafe' on the 5th floor, indulged in a fine lunch, then went shopping and Emily and I continued our indulgence all the way to the shoe department which resulted in designer flats. It's ok, I don't feel bad. We continued to some touristish areas as we approached a famous bar. The Bulldog. To my amazement, I entered and some large bald man approached me and asked for my ID. Yes, I was surprised and annoyed and I argued.Apparently I don't look 18 yet. We hit up the supermarket, and made dinner for our hosts in order to thank them for their hospitality and the fantastic meal the night before. I fell asleep watching a movie.
Our final day we got up, walked around, did some more shopping, went to a few tourist shops, where we approached these lollipops with a hemp leaf on them. Paige and Em purchased them, and they were, by far, the most, disgusting, repulsive, tasting things I have ever encountered, but it's ok, we got a good laugh out of it. We then got an amazing dinner with some tapas and then went on an evening cruise tour around the city, which was surprisingly extremely beautiful and romantic- That is until we got off the boat and ventured to the red light district. We met this nice older woman on the way back to her hotel when we asked for directions and she walked us most of the way, Mona, was very nice and even took a lovely photo of us, then we continued on. Prostitutes posed and pouted scandily clad in window displays under, well, a red light. I honestly never felt so bad for someone when I saw this old, nasty, skeevy man approach one, as the girl was charming smiled, and discussed prices... I'm assuming it was too much for his budget cuz he left without paying for her time. All I kept thinking was, Thank God I go to college. This didn't take out the tourist part of me, I laughed a lot, some of the names of the shops, for example, my favorite was the "I love you store" haha brought some amusement. I thought it was a nice take since most of the names were graphic and repulsive, but hey, that's just me. After three solid days full of experiencing all the different aspects of Amsterdam, I was more than content. No, I didn't get high at a coffee shop, everyone knows I don't like weed, but I'm just gonna say the one lick of the lollipop was enough for me. We got back to the apartment and began packing. Note to Self: Leave room for purchases while traveling. AKA wear a pear of leggings, yoga pants, and sweatpants, while on top wearing two tank tops, a long sleeve tee, you're stupid fat heavy scarf, a hat, and jacket so you have room in your luggage. Then we watched "BOLT", dozed off only to awake a 4a.m. alarm on my phone. We got in a cab, got on our bus, got on our flight, with surprisingly a significant less amount of difficulty than on the way here... you're probably thinking too good to be true... well of course you're right.

As our plane attempted to land in Pisa, the fog was too thick and we shot right back up in the air, only to land in Genova, Liguria... although a beautiful place with breathtaking coastlines and mountain ranges... another 2 hours from Pisa. We got on a bus with legit 30 Italian Flag throwers ranging from all adult ages, and us 3, in the back row, surrounded. As Emily put it so nicely, "Honestly, the way they are with us, it's like we're the only women on this planet, like how could they honestly be like this with everyone", I don't know Em, I just don't know. We got to Pisa, hopped onto another bus, which took about another hour and a half, and finally made it back to Firenze, hopped into another cab and finally, I never thought I would be so happy to see my humble apartment. Although it took a lot out of us, it's safe to say Charlie's Angels: Mission Amsterdam-Complete.

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