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I’m still alive. I was working in Amsterdam all last week. The weekend before I thought it would be a really good idea to stay up all night Saturday night (or was it Friday too?), sleep a few hours Sunday afternoon, then stay up all night Sunday night to get on Amsterdam time. For the most part it worked, I slept on a good chunk of the flight over and was ready to go when I landed.

lots of foamThe trip sucked. I worked long hours moving servers around all week which wore me out and built up a sleep deficit. By the end of the week I was pretty cranky, just wanted to curl up and sleep. Saturday was supposed to be my extra day off, but the schedule slipped enough to where I was working most of the day. I promptly went back to the hotel and slept until it was time to come home. Looking at my passport, I was there a year ago to the day. It was then and now cold, windy and rainy. One day I actually saw the sun!

I didn’t rent a car this time, I purely rode the intercity train, trams, and busses. I figured out the #40 bus line that will take me from Middenweg to Sciencepark, which took 1.5 km each way of walking out. By 22:00, buses only ran every 30 minutes so I wound up walking to the tram station every night anyways.

Friday and Saturday night I had to go to work early for maintenance, before the trams started running. The first taxi ride was pretty uneventful. The ride on Saturday was pretty annoying; when I got in, the driver told me he accepted credit cards. fine. Then he didn’t know where Sciencepark nor Kruislaan was, nor did his nav unit. Finally drew a little map and mentioned Middenweg which got the point across. When we arrived, he discovered he could only accept AmEx and Mastercard when I only had wallet full of Visa cards, no Euro, and only $100. He finally relented (what choice did he have?) and took me to an ATM in Middenweg. Good thing I knew the area.

Hotel Eden bathroomOne evening I had Indonesian food at Bojo’s, it was every bit delicious as I remember. I got in so late every night I didn’t want to burn two hours to eat, so the rest of my meals were New York Pizza and fries. I stayed at the Hotel Eden at Rembrandplein, really nice place; I highly recommend it. I booked some winter special and it was a good deal at like EUR 120/night. For work it was perfect since it was right on the #9 tram line. Otherwise, I didn’t make it outside of the square. Note for next time, a couple stops up at Praetoriustraat in Watergrafsmeer is a number of eetcafes. I’d gladly take pizza over schwarmarolls for lunch.

Full disclosure: I broke my nine month soda-free spree. At Telecity they only have a coffee machine and a Coca-cola machine. I failed to visit AlbertHein beforehand to smuggle in bottled water. I was so parched I gave in and bought a Coke (try chugging a hot coffee or tea, doesn’t work). I’m so disappointed that the counter reset. I only had one can and I’m back on the no-soda wagon.

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