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Amsterdam, Netherlands

0.The Roadie Memoirs

Amsterdam, Netherlands – Roxanne, you don’t have to put on the red light… But it really highlights your features, and green kinda makes you look like a pregnant alien.


Amsterdam for the first time, an amazing experience. Right off the bus, I dropped my bags and went straight to the days adventure. Behind me is the Van Gogh museum, which was amazing. There were tons of exhibits on naval ship design and warfare, tons of awesome paintings, sculptures, and so much more. Of course, that was after having some “coffee” at the café. Surprisingly, it tasted nothing like American coffee.

After the museum I wondered around the area a little more, and found this chessboard. It seemed a little small to me, but they carried on anyway. These guys took too long to play though and it got boring fast. You can see the snow in the background, yet everyone’s still riding around on bicycles. It was great to be in the land of healthy, environmentally friendly people, but you gotta watch out, cause they will run you over in the blink of an eye with those basketed death cruisers. The trains are even more surprising, so you gotta move swiftly.

Here’s a view of the famous canals in Holland, right outside the gig in Amsterdam, which was actually a church. Even though it was freezing, it was such a beautiful day. The trees looked so naked, but that kinda comes with the territory. The canals of Amsterdam have been part of the city’s landscape since the early 14th century, but most of the canals were built during the 17th century, Amsterdam’s golden age. 90 islands and 1,280 bridges, all within the city limits. During winters when it’s cold enough, Amsterdam’s canals become all-natural ice-skating venues. That would be awesome to ice skate all over town.

I remember growing up, I would visit friends in Michigan where we would skate on the lakes during winter. You could go for miles, with epic scenery on every side. I also found myself playing hockey regularly right behind the house. It was great training for the college experience I expected to receive. Fortunately, or unfortunately, I ended up not taking my college scholarship to play hockey. Instead, I put all my efforts into my music career, and left the life of an athlete to the side. I often wonder what it would’ve been like if I had pursued my talents in hockey. They said I could have been the next Gretzky, but I didn’t want to get hurt and risk my dreams in music. So, I opted for some genuine schoolen and got really intelligenter at music stuff, to prepare for the reel world.

Here I am, about 15 feet in the air, looking down from the preachers post. The red eyes in the photo make me look a little demonic. How ironic to be at church with such evil eyes, I blame the coffee.

Here’s what happens when rock concerts take place in a church. The red lights and the white beams just looked so awesome and evil, I couldn’t resist the picture from the guitar tech land on stage right. This was a great show and a very unique venue, one I will never forget. The partying after was amazing too. We couldn’t help but hit the red light district after seeing so many other red lights in the church, it just seemed so enticing and appropriate.

As we wondered through the shopping district of women, I truly realized the difference in culture between America and Europe. That night, the women, and even some men, were just completely on display like a piece of fish, waiting to become sashimi. After seeing the transvestites and other scarier things that were barely human, we scuttled off to a few more bars to laugh about the beautiful and horrific sights in the infamous Red Light District. According to Sting, Roxanne didn’t have to turn on the red light. That seems like a great marketing strategy to me too, since all the other girls had red lights. Maybe blue or purple would look good, plus how creative and expressive.

I found this awesome painting in a sex museum, isn’t it bitchin! In 2001 prostitution became legal in Netherlands, the country widely known for its laid back attitude towards recreational drugs and sex for sale. State officials thought it was better to legalize marijuana & prostitution, and allow it to legally contribute taxes. Still waiting for that in the U.S., my guess is that would totally fix the deficit in no time.

I love Netherlands.  There is such a great vibe there.  They are amazingly nice people, and very intelligent. Another famous area in Netherlands I love visiting is The Hague, or Den Haag. When you pronounce the name of this city, you hold the last G for about 3 seconds.  Try it, Den Haahhgggggggg. This is the city of the annual North Sea Jazz Festival.

I really like the ship logo next to North Sea Jazz. It’s a trumpet with Viking sails. I remember asking one of the stagehands back stage, “why are all the women so beautiful here”. He replied, “You think the Vikings brought back any ugly women?!” Plus, I imagine riding bicycles everywhere doesn’t hurt their figures either.

Here you can see the busy streets of Den-haug with its many shops and lively culture. Notice the orange flags everywhere. It was summertime during the world cup held in South Africa in 2010, so the whole town was showing their spirit for their football team. Don’t dare call it soccer over there though. You’re bound to get either an earful of words, or an eyeful of fist.


You can see a bit more festivities at the end of the shopping strip by the church where music lovers were packing the streets to catch the ska band on stage. As this video reaches the end you can see the beach in the distance. When I reached the sand I saw the familiar sight, as I realized, I’ve totally been there before.

Here’s a view of the beach, this time it wasn’t as windy, it was a much nicer day. Last time however, it was crazy windy, people were crashing kites left and right. At one point I saw somebody’s hat blowing down the beach. Check out the building at the end of the pier, it looks so futuristic and it was awesome to inspect all the architecture when we walked to the end of the pier.

As we headed back to the hotel for the next day’s journey, I realized if I was gonna ever move to Europe, this was one of my top choices. I’ve had some wild nights in Amsterdam and Den Haag! And I’ve had some scary experiences worth only doing once.  I must say, If you ever find time, you should visit. Just stay away from the donkey, dart, or banana shows.

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