One of the ways to drive drug dealers from the neighbourhood is to allow the police to do pat-down searches without reasonable cause, looking for weapons. The mayor of Amsterdam has given special permission today to do this in my neighbourhood. Another way is to make the area less attractive to dealers and junkies. That's what was happening today on the Krugerplein. A street party for kids was organised. The noise the kids can make can drive me nuts, let alone if you're on drugs…
One of the nicer ways of giving the 'hood back to the people is the Bakkie in de Buurt, the coffee in the 'hood. It was started two years ago by some ladies in the neighbourhood. They set up their little coffee truck in a street or on a square guerilla style and brew free mugs of coffee for passers-by. Last week (or was it three weeks ago?) Princess Máxima had a mug of coffee when they had set up on one of the other squares around here. A great way for neighbours to get to know each other. Instant party, just add hot water.
In competition with (or in addition to) the 'Bakkie,' a group of Moroccan youth had set up a stall with free couscous and mint tea. Very nice mint tea. The gent in the blue dress was a great dancer to the hiphop music that came blaring out of the street party's soundsystem.
On the corner of Krugerplein and Krugerstraat, in front of the apothecary was a removable information poster about the Jews that were deported from this neighbourhood to the Nazi extermination camps in World War Two. It is the first time I've seen such an information poster here and I think it is a good idea to make people today aware of what had happened here before. It gives you more of an historical perpective. It would be even better if they could get their facts right. The square is named Krugerplein, not Krügerplein. It was named after Stephanus Johannes Paulus Kruger (October 10, 1825 – July 14, 1904), better known as Paul Kruger, the face of Boer resistance against the British during the South African or Second Boer War (1899-1902). It was not named after Freddie Krueger. No umlauts in Oom Paul's name, please.
After checking out the street party I took a stroll towards the Amstel and
passwd (linux freudian typo) passed under the railway bridge crossing the Wibautstraat.
On Weesperzijde I noticed yet another court yard (YACY) and went in to investigate. It used to be the Deli brewery in the 19th century and was later the spot where the Luycks mustard company had its factory. The factory area has recently been redeveloped as a residential area.
what the yard looked like 150 years ago. the brewhouse is the one with the smoking chimney on the right
't Pommetje is –if I'm not mistaken– a place where Nicole used to go every now and then for lunch. I haven't tried it yet, but will do so in the near future.
Walking back to Krugerplein, I noticed the Fire brigade was playing (practising) with one of their trucks. The guy in the cherrypicker was attracting a crowd of interested colleagues…
…or maybe they were more interested in the real fire across the road.
I spied this little fellow in the window of a house in Schalk Burgerstraat, and took its photo because animals are cute (blogging secret rule #3).
Later in the day I went for dinner at the India Roti Room on 1e Oosterparkstraat near Wibautstraat. It came very wel recommended in the Iens restaurant guide and I have to say that the Chicken Karahi (North-West Frontier style) was excellent. When I got the bill I pointed out they had forgotten to add my starter (Keema Samosa) at which point they a) complimented me on my honesty (blush) and b) told me that since I was so honest it was on the house. A place I'll definitely go back to.
After dinner straight home for my daily shot of the Mythbusters. And at 22:00 to Maxwell's for a quiet drink on the terrace.