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text 2018-11-05 08:37
Amsterdam: What I bought

First of all, the books:

 

 

I showed some real restraint in my book buying. Two reasons:

a) I didn´t like the editions they had of some of the books I was planning to buy and I´m picky about my editions.

b) the books in general were very expensive. I got The Silent Companions and Norse Mythology in a "Pick two books for the price of one" bargain, so that was a good price. But all the other books costs 5-8 Euro more than in Germany and I couldn´t get myself spending too much money on books.

 

But I bought quite a bit of non-bookish stuff:

 

 

And a close up of the little waterbear, my new bookish piggy bank and of course de Poezenboat postcard. I wonder if MbD has the same one:

 

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text 2018-11-05 08:27
Amsterdam: Day 4

On our last day in Amsterdam we went on a canal boat tour and it is fascinating how different the city looks from this perspective. I´m so glad we did this tour, but I´m also a little bit sad, because we didn´t hit upon the Poezenboat.

 

After the tour we went into the red light district, taking a look at the Oude Kirk:

 

 

But we were completely tired that day and after having eaten delicious Thai food, we went to our appartement and slept for an hour before heading back to town to watch a movie at the Pathé Tuchinsky.

 

The Pathé Tuchinsky is a cinema located in a wonderful Art Deco building:

 

 

We went to see Bohemian Rhapsody and I loved this movie so much. The movie might have taken some liberties in its story telling, but I didn´t care. Rami Malek perfomance as Freddie Mercury was outstanding. The way he moves and performes in this movie, he isn´t just playing Freddie Mercury, he IS Freddie Mercury.

I thought the casting for the whole band was outstanding and it was an utterly moving and gripping experience to watch this movie.

 

Oh, and before the movie started a brass big band played Queen songs and OMG, these guys were amazing:

 

 

We really did finish our visit on a high note.

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text 2018-11-02 19:51
Amsterdam: Day 3

I‘m tired and my feet hurt, so I will keep it short today and only post the pictures.

 

First stop of the day: Artis Royal Zoo (such a wonderful place)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

After that we went to the crowded Van Gogh Museum.

 

 

There were just too many people for my liking, but I got at least a glimpse of Van Goghs Sunflowers. The Museumsplein, however, is impressive with the Van Gogh Museum, the Stedelijk Museum and the Rijksmuseum.

 

 

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text 2018-11-01 19:40
Amsterday: Day 2

On our first full day in Amsterdam we went to the Anne Frank house and along the way we got a first glimpse of the city, which is really beautiful with its canals and old buildings:

 

 

 

(Anne Frank house. Being in the secret annex was a harrowing and deeply moving experience)

 

And in the afternoon we went to the microbe museum Micropia and oh my, what a great great place this is:

 

(In this lab they cultivate the microbes for the exhibition)

 

(Bioluminescent bacteria)

 

(Tongue bacteria)

 

(Petri dishes - these remind me of my own student days. We swapped a toilet and a coffee mug in the microbiological departement and take a guess, which item contained more bacteria?)

 

(Smallpox)

 

(Adenovirus, which causes the common cold).

 

These glass sculptures by an artist named Luke Jerram were stunningly beautiful. I really want to own one of these.

 

And I bought quite a few things for myself today and I‘m doing a huge „what I bought“ post when I‘m back home again. The only thing I will tell you is that I bought Stephen Fry‘s „Heroes“ and I want to read it right now. So I‘m putting Josephine Tey‘s „Brat Farrar“  on the backburner for now.

 

 

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review 2018-02-15 19:50
Cruel!
Amsterdam Exposed: An American's Journey... Amsterdam Exposed: An American's Journey Into The Red Light District - David Wienir

This is a tough book to review. It left me feeling sad. While I was somewhat amused by the author's take of the Netherlands and the Dutch people, the main subject matter of the book is disturbing.
Several (many?) years ago, the author spent a semester of law school in Amsterdam studying International Law. At least, that was what he was supposed to be doing. His real motive in going to Amsterdam was to indulge his voyeuristic tendencies and explore the "red light" district. He wanted to discover why women chose a life of prostitution. And to write a book about it.
To do this, his methodology was to hang around the district, trying to befriend prostitutes, to get them to open up to him about their career choice. He found himself shut down, time after time. Eventually, he finds one woman who indulges him, meeting him for a few lunches.
On his last night in Amsterdam, he finally convinces her to meet with him and be interviewed. He then proceeds to drag the woman through hell, pulling out her darkest, most disturbing secrets about her upbringing and life. While this might be helpful if done by a trained psychologist, in a controlled setting, it most definitely should not be done by a untrained person, for the purposes of satisfying his own voyeurism! And, after he drains the woman of all her memories and shames, he just leaves her! Up and leaves the very next morning.
That would be a sad enough ending for the book, but the author is not done. He returns a few years later, and finds the woman again. For what purpose, I have no idea. She has turned her life around. She's out of the prostitution business, is engaged, and has a young child. But upon seeing the author again, she tells him that she will give up all she has, all she has worked for, if the author will take her. And what does he do? He leaves her again! How cruel!
So, here it is, several years later again. He finally writes his book. And ends it with the hope that the woman, who he has lost touch with, sees it. As if to torture her one more time. What a prick!

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