I have to declare what I am calling my Amsterdam Confession…. My dark, little secret that I am used to hiding in shame. That I never let others know for fear of rejection or ridicule. Something that will surely make me instantly unpopular and garner accusation of heresy!
I don’t like Amsterdam….
….There I have said it, it’s out, the world now know my Amsterdam Confession but before you all start to gather your pitch forks let me explain.
It’s not that I don’t want to like Amsterdam, in fact the opposite. I really want to love Amsterdam, I am a quarter Dutch after all. On paper it all works, and I should be Amsterdam’s biggest fan, but this just doesn’t translate into reality. I’m not sure what’s wrong – it’s not that I have anything against the tolerance or liberal values which makes the city world famous – or against the prostitution and drugs!
Indeed I support the right to individual freedom to do everything as long as no one else is harmed and think that the world could follow Amsterdam’s and the Netherlands approach in many respects. It’s not that the town is ugly, it’s not – it’s perfectly preserved, extensive and detailed … Just that nothing grabs me, there is no ‘wow’ factors. Why does the entire world seem obsessed with this place? Is there something I’m missing? Were my space cakes bad??
I don’t even mind that it’s hyper-touristy… That’s not always a bad thing but I just can’t find anything to make me fall in love…The weather is horrible, the food non-description, the prices sky high and the sites so-so. But this dislike is different the that I (dare I say) loathing I hold towards Milan … A place I can’t even want to like and the only travel destination I actively recommend against.
Returning back to my Amsterdam Confession: I really want to love Amsterdam, to embrace my heritage, and enjoy this city like so many others do but I can’t see it happening. I’ve tried twice now and think I’m just gonna have to leave sleeping dogs lie so to speak. Maybe I’ll try again when the weather is better, not on a weekend, I’ll take a canal tour or find some good foodie spots. Or I’ll go in the middle of winter when the canal’s freeze over and you can skate on them … Now there’s a site. They say timing is everything….Maybe mines just always off?