First day @ Amsterdam

It was a rather uneventuful flight of 12.5 hours and I’m fortunate that although my seatmates did not speak a single word of English, they were very understanding and helpful. Clearance at Schiphol Airport was a breeze as well too.

My boss fetched me from the airport and thank goodness too, to haul my 23kg luggage bag about right to my place of accomodation. The house is right by a canal and there are boats that goes through which I can see through the kitchen window.

Next was a visit to the supermarket and breakfast at my boss’s house which is very close by. Dutch strawberries; fresh, cheap and sweet! Thereafter was going back to the house and unpack, meet my housemate, read a bit about Amsterdam, snooze a bit till late afternoon.

Then the real challenge comes: cycling. I had not ridden a bike since school days and that’s like at least 10 years. First obstacle, getting on the bike…. cleared, next cycle…. now that’s harder. I had never ridden a bike whereby I can’t seat my buttocks first. So the idea is to move and stand and sit. Simple but takes practice to get the hang of. So off I go on a riding trip to the heart of Amsterdam. Things picked up along the way… watch out for cars, trams and people at crossings, stick close to the side of the road as impatient taxis and cars will just zoom by. In the end, I fell twice … once was off balance at start of riding and the other was the gears went worky a little. Looks like I’m on my way to fitness….

Weather in the afternoon was sunny and enjoyed a drink at a cafe/pub and thereafter to dinner. As the sun sets around 10pm, I find it hard to believe that when I rode back to the house it was already 11-ish into the night. Safe!

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