Sunday, January 8, 2012

Lets take a stroll through Amsterdam

Amsterdam..... where do I begin? The first day here I went to class at Henny Jurriens and Cathy Martin taught. She was such an inspiration and is helping me! Angela's friend Jordan, who is dancing with Royal Swedish Ballet, came to visit for the weekend so after class I met up with them at Sarah's pancake house. I got an omelet, it was huge. We strolled through the cobble stoned streets to the Royal Palace of Amsterdam, the 8th wonder of the world! It has just reopened after being renovated and it was incredible. The queen of Holland and her guests still stay at it at times so its only open to the public for part of the time.

All throughout Amsterdam you can walk down streets and alleys and you just stumble upon book stands, flower markets, flea markets and churches. We went into a church that seemed completely hidden if you weren't looking for it which led into this adorable courtyard. The whole city is full of these wonderful things...

The next day I took class in the morning and who taught...? Carmen! I grabbed a fresh bagel and coffee and Angela, Jordan and I wandered through a flea market and into many retro stores trying on coats, boots, hats etc. We went into De Bijenkorf, a fancy "mall" where you can go get coffee on the top floor and look out onto all of Amsterdam.

We went back to Angela's to make some dinner and cut and dye me and Jordans' hair before hitting the town last night! We danced the night away at two different clubs. People here dance. They dont just sway back and forth and shake there hips. They dance.

After sleeping into an embarrassing late hour we grabbed a coffee  and went to the Anne Frank house. Reading her diary I had the annex pictured in my mind as what I thought it looked like. Seeing it first hand, words cant explain.... What these 8 people lived in is shocking and inspirational in a way.... The way its set up to walk through was very historical.  To have been able to walk through and see and sit where Anne Frank had spent two years of her life hiding was life changing in many different ways. When the museum was made in the Annex Otto Frank wanted it to be unfurnished like it was when they were found and the Annex was emptied, so there are small replicas of what each room looked like. On the walls though are original pictures Anne had put up and markings of their height while living in the Annex. The Attic is closed to the public but you can look up the stairs and they put a mirror so you can see the reflection of it. When standing in this tiny place I just kept telling and asking myself, this was where she spent her last two years of her life before being taken into Auschwitz.... how? Her diary was her refuge.... What if that was me.....?

"When I write I can shake off all my cares. My sorrow disappears, my spirits are revived!"- Anne Frank

"To build up a future, you have to know the past." - Otto Frank

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