Click HERE to see our most recent trip to Amsterdam

 In October, 2000, we visited Amsterdam in celebration of our two-year anniversary. Nick and I first made contact with each other on the 27th of October 1998, and our relationship continues to flourish. The trip was a surprise from me to Nick. He knew that he would be kidnapped, but didn't know where we were going.
   We knew when we reached London Heathrow airport that our trip would be fun and full of good times. Going through the metal detector, the man behind us sent his mobile phone through the scanner. As it was going through, it started to ring, which caused a flurry of activity. The man collected his phone and spoke to the caller while he was being frisked by the security guards. Imagine: "Honey, I can't talk right now. I'm being searched."
 Our hotel in Amsterdam was right in the heart of things, close to the famous museums. We took advantage of this proximity and visited the Van Gogh museum to view his many famous and beautiful paintings and also to see a special exhibit on Light. I wanted to hear a Dutch person pronounce Van Gogh, but never did get the chance. All the Gs that I heard while there sounded like someone clearing their throat after a very nasty cold.  Map Street
 Ferris  We had some delicious food, of course, as always. Our hotel breakfast made us re-evaluate the benefits of muesli and boiled eggs and we resolved to eat more of them at home. The things I can remember eating at various meals include: ostrich kebabs, goats' cheese and aubergine wrapped in grape vine leaves, steak with mushroom sauce, American pancakes and bacon, tastes of smoked gouda cheese, pancakes with warm cherries, pecan pie, and some chocolate brownies. We also ate an Indonesian meal that included more than 15 dishes! Immediately after eating this meal, we rode on a Ferris (big) wheel. It was Nick's first time to do this, and although it was raining incessantly and we were both scared of the height, we grew to enjoy the night-time view together.
 We paid the obligatory visit to Anne Frank's house, although we didn't go in. It was interesting to see it from outside: these things never look as we imagine them. We also visited the Homomonument, which is dedicated to persecuted homosexuals throughout the world. When we first saw it, it seemed unimpressive. It was a pink granite triangle that jutted out into a canal with granite steps leading down. After we photographed it, we realised that we were only seeing one corner of the monument, and that the other two corners were yards away, connected by a pink granite line. One of the corners was raised about four feet off the ground, and the other was ground level with Dutch inscriptions referring to the past, present, and future. We had no guide to interpret the meaning for us, but we liked the three levels of triangles: raised, ground level, and sunken in the water, and appreciated that the monument resided in the shadow of a large church. We took away our own meanings and were thankful that neither of us has ever been seriously persecuted for our sexuality. Click here for more photos of the Homomonument.
 Nick at monument
 Flower Market

B tulips


Some of the tulips in the springtime back in Southampton
 I went to Amsterdam with only a vague idea of what it would be like. I had read John Irving's A Widow for One Yearand Rupert Thompson's creepy The Book of Revelation, which are both set in the city, but it didn't all make sense until I saw the canals and tall, slender buildings for myself. It reminded me of Freiburg with its cleanliness and architectural beauty, and the people whose homes we peeked into have impeccable taste in design. We took a little of their style away with us by purchasing an interesting clock for out kitchen which is only two large brushed aluminium hands and an exceptional chef's knife. Nick bought a nice cuddly toy for his new nephew at a typical Dutch toyshop and we also got two bags of tulip bulbs to plant at home. Each year when they bloom, we'll be reminded of our lovely trip to Holland.
 Lizard  We enjoyed our trip immensely, but isn't it always nice to get home to your own bed? Our flight was delayed two hours, and it rained constantly during the drive home, but we actually awoke thankful that we didn't get caught in any of the flooding that had affected the rest of the country. In conclusion, I can heartily recommend a trip to Amsterdam, but I can more highly recommend a loving relationship with someone as special as My Nick.


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