So the ONE time I don't remember to take my 'No Jet Lag' homeopathic pills, and I got knocked on my ass! If ever I thought it was merely a placebo effect - no more! I had actually forgotten to bring them, but then Rina gave me a pack at the airport... took that first one, and then it was like they never existed. That lapse in memory coupled with the fact that I did not even close my eyes once on the 10 1/2 hour flight probably didn't help. It's Saturday morning here , and I'm just now beginning to feel like instead of needing to sleep for a week I only need to sleep for 3-4 days.... so I'm making progress. There's been talk of getting a workout in today which would be fantastic, get the blood moving and the endorphins flowing.... then go back to sleep. J/K.
Let me back up a bit though, to the flight where I met the loveliest couple! Nihal and Niki from Indio, CA (originally Sri Lanka). We didn't get to talking until the the time of the inevitable bathroom break and awkward introduction and apologies for needing to disturb. I got Nihal's walker down from the overhead bin, it wasn't until later I learned he lost his leg a couple years ago to cancer. His prosthetic no longer fits because the chemo made him drop about 30lbs.....Fucking cancer man! But Nihal was all smiles and he just shrugged his shoulders, and proceeded to brag about their musician son while handing me Shane's business card. (www.shshshane.com) Then he asked if I knew the term 'bucket list' to which I said 'of course.' He beams even brighter and tells me they're on their way to Moscow to make another check on said list. He wants to drink from the Lake Baikal. After Nihal fell asleep, Niki and I continued to chat and told me to look her up on Facebook and to email them the next time I'm out their direction. I tell you... it's magic! I have some of the sweetest encounters while traveling.
Great conversation and 3 movies later, we're twenty minutes from landing and I keep expecting the stewardess to walk by with the usual passport control arrival cards..... nada. I was steeling myself for another Heathrow customs experience, remember that asshole from last year? (was a very amusing post if you missed it) In Holland, it was a quick 1, 2 punch ...down at my passport, up at my face and stamp! -- no hello, no why are you here, how long are you going to be staying... great! (By the way, that was the first stamp on my brand new passport. I am now working on my 4th.)
Kevin was right there waiting for us, and we were off...... While Rina and Kevin went into the dungeon museum I had two espressos at the cafe next door and had my second sweet random encounter....enter Carlos from Barcelona. (XOXO Muriel) He rode by twice and finally stopped to introduce himself...A super sweet guy who's here for 2 months looking for work -- to change things up. Love it! .... Cut to having walked the city like 3x over, and we finally had to give in to the exhaustion and auto-piloted ourselves back to the hotel to crash out for 2 hours.....See the day's pics below:
Amsterdam is a very cool city, and at another point when I'm not working on 24+ hours with no sleep I would like to experience more of it.... but this was a nice introduction. We took the train the next morning to Asten, Kevin's hometown, about an hour outside of the city.
We've been laying low....real, real low....ever since. We're all about to take yet another nap, but then find a space to move our bodies and take ourselves through some kind of class.
Then tomorrow it's off to Belgium for 3 days, 2 nights.....