Amsterdam and Keukenhof, 2017.

After spending the week in Brussels with work, I took the chance to head up north to Amsterdam to visit my parents. Despite travelling a fair amount, it still seems pretty crazy to be able to get on a 2 hour (comfortable) train journey, and be in a totally different European country. Incidentally, I always seem to think that Amsterdam is further south than Brussels, but that isn’t the case.

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Some old family friends were visiting my mum and dad at the same time, which was nice… as I don’t think I had seen them in at least ten years.

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Before I came, I was being a bit down on Amsterdam as a city – focussing on memories of the areas that are over-run by tourists, and in particular, rowdy ‘lads’. It was nice to explore a bit and re-discover the side streets with wee cafes and pubs that give the place its charm, and remember what I liked about it.

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I spent a couple of days working from a quirky wee cafe I found that had good beer, and an array of comfy couches.

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Sadly, my parents’ dog has gone a bit mad, and had to be kept on a (literal) short leash. That’s what happens sometimes when you opt for re-homing a street dog.

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Since it was my first trip to Amsterdam in Spring time, we took the chance to visit Keukenhof – home of the infamous tulip fields. If you aren’t into pictures of flowers, best look away now.

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I had imagined endless fields of brightly coloured tulips that came up to the waist, covering rolling hills as far as the eye could see. I’m not really sure where that came from, since tulips would never be that tall, and the Netherlands is famously flat. Either way, in reality, Keukenhof is really a giant park with various displays and interesting flower varieties.

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There were some fields visible from the park mind you…

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Maybe I will take up a new career as a flower photographer.

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Apparently this style of painting is by a famous Dutch artist. I wouldn’t mind a few of these for the flat.

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Ciao for now Amsterdam.

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