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April 12th 2007
Published: April 12th 2007
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Amsterdam is an overwhelming, amazing city, with so much happening at once that its hard to catch a breath. The saying 'anything goes' certainly applies here, and it results in an absolute bizarre mix of cuilture and people. This was certainly higlighted when we did Randy Roys Red Light Tour- along with a mother and her two -20 year old sons, a young couple and a photographer from Canada. At one stage of the tour I was standing in the doorway of a child care centre, looking at a big old church, right nothing too funny about that. BUT! if i faced the other way i was looking directly into a window at the start of the African Corner, red lights blaring and skantily clad women opening and closing their doors hoping to entice a male visitor (they have most success with British tourists). If I walked 10 metres down the road I could buy as many magic mushrooms as i wanted, and (apparently) the most potent pot in the world. Chez and I were shocked, but apparently the children are oblivious to the 'extra curricular activities' going on literally next door. When interviewed for a documentary the children said
The view from our hostelThe view from our hostelThe view from our hostel

And the closest picture we could get of the red lights- apparently if you take photos of the girls in the window you could get your camera taken.
they thought the girls were 'selling kisses' or 'waiting for a train to the beach'!!! Ah the innocence of kids! The oldest 'girl' stilll working in the district is 85- and doing a roaring trade apparently!!

It is interesting to note that cannibis is not actually legal in Holland, it has merely been decriminalised, a decision made by the government when the heroin problem got out of hand, they decided that there was no harm in people smoking, but chose to crack down on the heroin market instead. They succeeded, cleaning up the streets of Amsterdam, and making plenty of money (all coffee shops (places to smoke) need to be registered and pay taxes) selling pot to tourists. The red light industry also brings a lot of money in to Holland, and so a blind eye is also turned to the 'uncouth' aspects of the businesses, which also all have to be registered and accountable.

We did and saw so much in Amsterdam but the shining lights for me were............

1. Meeting Laura and Willimijn (cousin Barbs sister and friend) and having a leisurely lunch on a canal, before having more leisurely beers on Willimijns' roof top
The leaning houses of AmsterdamThe leaning houses of AmsterdamThe leaning houses of Amsterdam

Apparently they lean because the whole city is built on a river.
garden. It was great to chill out and chat with such lovely company in lovely surroundings.

2. The gob-smacking in your face ness of the sex industry- all the red light windows, all the live sex shows and yet it really doesnt feel that sleazy- in fact its all run very professionally! Even the audience participation section (relax it was a bit of fully clothed nowhere near erotic dancing and some fun with fruit) was very tasteful!

3. The pub crawl- just a great time and good laughs.

4. Sitting in Dam Square listening to a busker sing and watching the wacky Amsterdam world pass by!

Additional photos below
Photos: 39, Displayed: 23


The mixed culture of AmsterdamThe mixed culture of Amsterdam
The mixed culture of Amsterdam

The nuns that this nunnery was built for were happy to be nuns if they didnt have to take their vow of chastity- so they ran away to Amsterdam where they knew it wouldnt matter!!
A Smart ShopA Smart Shop
A Smart Shop

Code for magic mushroom shop- complete with online order forms, beautifully artistic bongs and as many different mushrooms as you could ever want- and cheridas favourite..... herbal speed!
Sampling the local brew!Sampling the local brew!
Sampling the local brew!

Pub Crawl Night!

Sounds so much better when he says it!!

We set the town alight!!!!

Coz who can pronounce his real name?
...through the tulips...through the tulips
...through the tulips

Keukenhof Flower Farm

27th April 2007

All fun...
Great blog....loved that place especially the Green Greasshopper!!! Good to see you smiling and letting loose. Miss ya Bec x
28th April 2007

Yes, it's been a while, i'm sorry, been slack, wont come up with any lame , poor excuse for not adding comments lately, sorry! We'll seem's like conquering Japan wasn't enough, you have jet setted to the other side of the world to seed your seeds there! Haha! What has happened to my little innocent Payneham girl hey??? Sounds like you are having great time. Keep up the photos, they are always good for a laugh. I hope you made it to that destination when you were catching the train the other day/night when we msg'd each other, where was it again, Karkow???
28th April 2007

Proud Prude
Seriously, proud doesn't begin to describe it. When I said experience everything I probably was a little naive! But still proud Love Mum
30th April 2007

Wow!! Where did you find him? I'm sure he wasn't there when I went to Amsterdam (come to think of it, that was 25 years ago!!). Have you found anyone to buy you diamonds yet?? The Godmother in me was pleased to see that the highlights for you were fairly innocuouse...but I did wonder about the 85 year old "girl". I guess and old girl never dies she just........ Had a good holiday at Marion for salmon off the beach in the pouring rain. Slightly different to Amsterdam!! Lots of love Sheila
30th April 2007

Fantastic to hear of your wonderful adventures! What I'd do to be swapped places with you guys right about now. Hope you are living it up. Have a new email address as they cancelled the old uni one - serves me right for not making a new one sooner Keep the info coming I love it!
1st May 2007

Hey girlies, lovn the blog and the photos are awesome, i think maybe you girls (chez by the looks of it in the 'smart shop') sampled the local produce!!! keep up the great pics and yeah i do know what they say bout people with big feet...............big hands!! Love ya, bid xoxox
1st May 2007

how was the weed?
Awesome pictures as usual! You in the clogs and both of you on the penis is one for the grandkids though... Hey hoe come I didn't get notice of this did you take me off email alert!? Stay safe!
2nd May 2007

i havent taken you off my list!!!
so there!!!
4th May 2007

G'day aims!!!
hey sexy pants great to hear your having a great time! I love all your photos! Guess what- im heading to Aami to watch the crows play 2mor. wish u were cumin too!! Looks like your having the best time-live it up hall.miss u, luv u bec d xoxoxoxox
5th May 2007

Because you arent in Japan
Thats why I wont travel there anytime soon to take pics!!

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