Amsterdam: Catching up with friends, school done & the english were in town

Since my last update from Amsterdam a few things have moved on. Sadly, my flu is not one them and keeps me on low energy mode and often indoors after school (well, the weather was far from inviting to go outdoors anyway!). But that didn’t stop me from still doing a few things, catching up with friends Liselotte & Jan and completing my A1 in Dutch. Happy Easter everyone. 

Catching up with Jan: Jan was the first dutch person i managed to catch up with. And fun it was to review the Russian farm stories over a beer or two. He also moved on in life, with his studies and now even has a girlfriend (… clearly he ignored my horror stories in his considerations ;o). Hope to catch up with him over kings day for his crash car race.


Catching up with Liselotte: We met back in Thailand training at Diamond Muay Thai since Liselotte is well into kickboxing. Liselotte took me to nearby Westerpark. There was a nice sunday market (I scored a nice sausage there) and, in the cold weather, we enjoyed a few glasses of mulled wine before hitting a bar with old school arcade games. Liselotte is hard to beat and I literally lost every match until i found the right street figher character to help me out. fun afternoon with even a few easter bunnies hopping around.

A night out in the red light district: One Friday night turned out to be really good fun when I met a Latvian couple visiting town. We met at the old sailor pub (see cover picture) in the red light district and had some good entertainment watching the crowd gazing at the women in the windows. Funniest was when a guy tried to take a picture of one of the pro’s (a no go!) … he almost lost his mobile as the girl jumped out of her box and grabbed it.

Netherlands – England match: the english were in town for a pre world cup friendly (well, no world cup for the dutch side) and they make it felt. 6000 supporters need entertainment. And to be fair to them, i loved the atmosphere they created with their chants (‘please dont take me home’) around the embankments of the red light district and the fun conversations (here a youtube video of a guy jumping into the canal). Never really felt there was a safety threat though c100 got arrested. England won 1:0 by the way. 



School already behind me – A1 in Dutch: on Friday we completed our A1 level course and it does help. Key issue remains laziness to try it out given everyone and his dog speak english pretty well. The group changed a bit with a new girl joining and the Indian restaurant owner not turning up anymore. I had lost a little drive given the flu, but overall think made some good progress (a statement that holds for all participants). In fact, i was racing through the dutch grammar and writing homework (not entirely without mistakes for full disclosure) and felt that i acquired some good talking basics. We even had a little look at swearwords on our last day – a lesson that shocked & entertained alike. Very Dutch – rather then picking it up on the street, the word is spread in a controlled manner … just like dope in a coffee shop ;o)


Thanks go to the patient & fun teachers and all the best to my fellow students. Teacher roos said good bye with a bottle of prosecco – nice touch i think and a first for any of three language schools in been too since last summer. Let’s see, maybe i am back for A2 later. For now … vakantie!

Interview at on Monday morning i went to a 3h assessment center for a german speaking partner executive role at booking. They are originally from Amsterdam before being bought by a US player and a major employer (16k globally) as the #1 booking site globally. So far i haven’t heard back. Maybe after easter. 

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