Europe Day 5 – Amsterdam and Anne Frank House

by Troy Grosfield
May 30th, 2010

I Amsterdam

It’s the end of May and the weather hasn’t been the greatest. During the first couple days of our stay the early afternoons have been pretty decent weather only needing a light jacket. It has been raining off and on which makes traveling rather difficult especially by foot. It has been in the low 60’s in the day and low 40’s at night. When it’s windy it’s hit or miss if you’re going to be affected by it. The large buildings will often block the wind, but you will turn a corner at times and catch a pretty cold chill.

We planned to go to the Van Gogh museum, but apparently so did everyone else in Amsterdam at the same time. We showed up to a line that wrapped all the way around the building. We are going to try and go back early tomorrow morning.   The museum is right across the street from the apartment we rented which is super convenient.

I Amsterdam Park

I Amsterdam Park

I Amsterdam

Right next to the museum is the “I Amsterdam” landmark. It’s actually quite interesting to see. The surrounding park is also quite nice!

The buildings here are very interesting. Every building is right next to each other so you don’t see many allys. Just main roads.

City Vibe

The city seems very clean for how many people are here. The streets are pretty well maintained so you don’t see a lot of trash laying around.

The city layout it like a large honeycomb. The majority of the streets are separated by water which has an incredibly cool look and feel especially growing up in an area, Colorado, where we didn’t have any of that.

Amsterdam Birds Eye View

Amsterdam Birds Eye View

However, the area is so symmetrical that you often lose sight of where you are. For example, it was a pretty decent night the other night so we decided to walk to find a specific bar. We walked for about 45 minutes and couldn’t find it so we stopped by another bar to grab a drink before heading on our way. We stepped outside after the drink to grab a cab. He basically ended up taking us in a big circle across the street from where we originally were.

Before getting in a cab ask the driver if he knows how to get to your destination and how much it will cost. Once they lock into a price they will usually shut off their meter and just charge you the flat rate they estimated.

Automatic Pouring Liquor Setup

Automatic Pouring Liquor Setup

Bussiness Efficiency

They have a few business processes that are quite a bit more efficient than in the states. At restaurants all waiters and waitresses carry handheld devices that they use to take the customers orders. The orders are then automatically sent back to the kitchen so they waiters/waitresses never have to run back to the kitchen to drop off the customers orders.

The other efficient process is the way they serve drinks at bars. All bottles are put upside down in motion censored measuring devices. So the bartenders just hold the glasses up to the sensors and it pours the exactly one shot then shuts off. This would make it easier to predict revenue per bottle by preventing generous pours, bad for the customers :(, and spills.

Anne Frank house

Anne Frank house highlighted

Dam Square and Anne Frank’s House

We we’re able to make it to Dam Square and the Anne Frank house (right) which was full of history. Walking through the house often gave chills as you learn more about what happened to Jews in the early to mid 40’s. The house was very well preserved and the line to get in was incredibly long here as well. You walk through the entire house and can see where the Frank family was in hiding. I was surprised how many floors there were in the house. It was quite the experience and the videos and short diary clippings throughout the house did a great job depicting the way life was for the Frank family from 1942-1944.


Dinner at Little Buddha

Dinner at Little Buddha

We went to a sushi place for dinner called the Little Buddha. From my understanding it’s a chain restaurant and they have one in Vegas. This place may have been one of the coolest places in terms of ambiance that I’ve ever been to and they had very good sushi!

The night life on a Sunday was full of many tourists just like ourselves.  In fact, the majority of the places we went we would run into other tourists.  It’s a very diverse place and tons of fun!

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