Friday, January 05, 2007

Late Night Diary

What's more dangerous? Abundant access to cannabis or access to the internet? Probably the combination of the two.

There's only one full day of this trip left before heading home on Saturday. Normally, this would bum me out, but I don't mind so much this time. It's not so much that I want to go home (I most certainly don't), but rather, I feel fulfilled. I don't often make repeat visits to places I've already been, so it's something special that I've done re-runs on Barcelona and Amsterdam.

Honestly, I didn't enjoy Barcelona as much as I did the first time around. Despite the great company and awesome New Year's weekend, it just didn't have the same charm and wonder as when I first came in the warmth of the summer and dodging tourists by staying in the suburbs for a more local experience. Still, I don't like Barcelona any less. Having come in two totally different times of year has helped me see the facets better. Barcelona's like a kalidescope. Just as the view changes dramatically on each facade as you stroll around the Sagrada Familia, the face of Barcelona changes from hour to hour.

Our street alone changed character many times a day, from a haven for workaday people coming and going from their residences, to a brilliant shopping area, to a decent dining area, and to a rowdy nightlife strip. The street transformed itself based on the time of day and the day of the week constantly. And I appreciate that about it. And would still like to live there.

Amsterdam, on the other hand, I like even more than the last time around. Beyond the sex, drugs and rock n' roll image, Holland is very progressive, charming, and livable. Now that I'm a cyclist, I truly appreciate all the facilities for bicycles, how common they are and how great it would be if California were more like it. Within blocks, one can find a rowdy party or a serene, quiet place for contemplation. It's also that much more likeable when you're not surrounded by American tourists, which was probably the issue last time around.

No comments:

Post a Comment