Scenes From Amsterdam at Dusk
The dipping sun is the perfect backdrop to my sugar high. I have been salivating over the waffle stalls, but then politely declining for far too long. Within moments I have devoured the satisfying treat and Filippo and I are headed arm-in-arm towards the museum district. From beyond the bare trees, the sun, being sure not to wear out its welcome, is at the optimal level to create a dramatic light scene. Thick beams cut through the bicycle axels and envelop the amateur skaters stumbling on the seasonal ice rink.
We step into the Van Gogh museum just before closing time. From room to room, Amsterdam’s dwindling light makes a comeback and although my eyelids may be sinking like the sun, the master’s signature brushstrokes compel me to continue.
A trip to Amsterdam is surely incomplete without a stroll through the Red Light District. An endless pink glow trails the narrow streets dotted with clusters of wide-eyed guys ogling the working women. The juxtaposition of the red lights on the church beside them intrigues me. I’m thankful to break away into a pub for some drinks, but soon find that every time I have to use the toilet, I’m going to have to carry a key attached to a carved penis up a dangerously steep flight of narrow steps. Clearly, this is as crazy as it’s going to get for me here in The Dam.
After dinner I’m not craving dessert, but to just simply sit on the sad looking bench roughed up with graffiti that overlooks the canal. For me, a city has not been fully explored until I can find “my spot.” I always need that moment to pause and take in that postcard view, one that when everything else is gone, my mind still returns to. On this still, crisp night, I admire the golden reflections on the water that seem to elongate the already lofty homes. Bicycles pass by gracefully like the ripples on the canal and I know I’ve found it. Although Filippo drags me away far before I’m ready, I know this memory was made to last.