When we arrived in Amsterdam, we had just gotten off a plane from Iceland, from Denver, from Spokane. We were exhausted. And we were greeted by rain. We got a large taxi, thankfully, for all of our luggage and the driver eventually figured out where to take us. We get there and my husband and the taxi driver get out to make sure we’ve arrived to the correct place. They are gone for a long, long time. I’m left in the taxi-van with 3 sleeping littles, watching bicycles whiz by and the rain come down. A man with an orange and yellow vest kept coming over and looking in the van – I knew he was wondering why we were parked there for so long but I think the sleeping children kept him from doing anything. My husband and the taxi driver finally come back and the driver is told he needs to move immediately or he’ll get a parking ticket. So we get all of our luggage out as quickly as we can (a family of five moving overseas requires a lot of luggage lol), bring it over to the building where there really is no overhang/protection from the rain, and after standing there for at least 5 minutes we somehow manage to pull it all through a long alley way to the apartment we had booked. (Our poor kids – they must think their parents are crazy after this trip!) The guy with the key finally shows up and opens the door. We look inside to find a long narrow hallway and even longer and narrower stairs that zig zag up to the top floor where we were supposed to stay. The guy looked at our faces, our luggage and the stairs and asked us if we’d like him to find us a different apartment. One with an elevator perhaps. We said yes of course and luckily he found us one. So thankful for his offer. We pulled all our luggage back out to the street, quickly crossing the bike lanes (one might argue that the bikes in Amsterdam are more dangerous than cars!) and waited for a taxi. The whole time our suitcases and ourselves getting soaked by the rain. We finally arrive at the new apartment we would stay in for 3 nights and half of the items in our luggage are dampened. But we have beds to sleep in and that’s all that matters.
Our stay in Amsterdam was rough to be honest, but we still enjoyed what we could. I don’t recommend traveling through Europe while also making an international move. lol ;) Next time we go, we will travel light and expect to have to climb stairs wherever we stay – this “stair encounter” was only the first.
On our second morning in Amsterdam, I was the first to wake up and was pleasantly surprised to see the sun shining through the windows. I did as any good photographer would do and went outside with my camera. It was the first time I was really motivated to get out and see things since we arrived. It’s amazing how sunlight can change your mood, no matter how exhausted and jet-lagged you are. This sunlight on this morning, shining through the bicycle tires, reflecting off windows, warming me physically and mentally, was just what I needed to give me a second wind for the remainder of our trip.