Eleven more to come. I can barely believe I’ve already been back in Amsterdam for a month. It’s gone by pretty quickly but at the same time I feel mostly settled in. Things like grocery shopping and finding my way around are getting easier, but other things like clothes shopping are still a bit intimidating. It’s mostly because of the language. I have no idea what the signs mean nor have I completely figured out the size conversions. Why can I be a size 8 in the US and a size 40 here? That’s not fair. The good news is that I’m not spending as much as I might otherwise in my downtime.
The first month was busy with travel, but month two looks to be even busier. I started the month in London and I’ll be back there three more times in February. I’ll also travel back to Oslo this week, to Brussels next week, and my first trip to Sweden (near Stockholm) the week after. In between all of that work travel I’ve also just booked a trip to Paris next weekend with my new friends. The three of us girls are getting out of town to celebrate Singles Awareness Weekend (aka Valentine’s Day) and where better than the most romantic city on Earth? This is my second trip to Paris but their first. We’ll likely visit many of the places I’ve already been to, but being that it’s Paris you won’t hear me complaining.
Along with jet setting around Europe this month, I’m also looking for a new apartment. The place I’m currently in is nice, but a 40 minute trip into city center which is where I need to be if I want to maintain any kind of social life this year. After a few misfires in trying to connect with a local agent, I finally got an appointment to see a place on Saturday morning.
The apartment looked really cute in the photos, but it’s a bit farther from city center than I want to be. Out of curiosity and as an excuse to get out of the house, I went out to see it. Just like the photos, the place was adorable but being on the top floor and with an A-frame roof the small apartment felt even smaller so I was honest and passed.
This Friday, before I leave for Paris, I have another appointment with a different agency to see a couple of other apartments in the city. The neighborhoods I’m most interested in are De Pijp (pronounced “de pipe” a young, hip area with tons of restaurants, bars and shops), Jordaan (an older, historic part of Amsterdam closer to Centraal Station), near Vondelpark, and a few other little neighborhoods. Ideally I’ll find a one bedroom apartment with a pull out sofa or comfortable couch for house guests (hint hint to those of you who said you were coming to visit me) in a cute neighborhood and a typical Amsterdam looking building (tall and narrow). I’m also hoping to find a place quickly and move in around the first of March. We’ll see how many of my criteria will be met.
Needless to say February will likely fly by in a whirlwind of activity – travel and apartment hunting. Hopefully I’ll remember to stop once in a while to take a moment, breathe it all in, and remember each and every experience. Oh, and take pictures to share all of these crazy adventures with you.