Amsterdam

Although I think of myself as moderately well-traveled, I realize with surprise that the last time I was in this city rescued from the sea was 1970.  I was in Venice in 1984, and have recently been in St Petersburg, so I am familiar with canals, but Amsterdam has a unique feel – all the houseboats and sails seen through buildings.  I have been in and out of Schipol but that doesn’t count – except seeing the tulip fields from above, that was cool – swaths of yellow or red or pink..

But now the train is rocking gently along the bank above the waterway toward the central station.  The rain has followed me from New York and the wet streets are speckled with yellow leaves after the technique of Seurat.  Tiny cars crawl over the bridges, and the pretty girls and serious, quiet men go about their business in this live-and-let-live town.

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