Saturday, 2 August 2008

a pride of gays

I got up early today and, since the weather was nice, I did the laundry. After lunch I decided I was in dire need of new jeans. All my old pants are too wide now and I have to hold them up with my belt. This means tightening the belt so much that the pants bunch up which is uncomfortable. I walked to the Tropical Museum where I got the #22 bus to Central Station. CS is a mess. The whole place is broken up and there's no good place to walk. I managed not to get killed by traffic when I made my way to the top of Nieuwendijk.

CS mess

I was looking for a shop that sells the 'larger' sizes and that would shorten the legs of the pants if needed. The last shop I found that would do this moved to Purmerend a few years ago, and I've been buying my pants there ever since. Renate is always nice enough to bring me there in the car, but she's on holiday now in Ribe, Denmark. I walked into the first shop I found on the corner of Nieuwendijk and Martelaarsgracht: the Werkmanspaleis, 'working man's palace'. With a name like that it must be good. And so it was. They had jeans in my new size (42, down from 46!) with a 32 leg and they would shorten it for me (I need a 30 leg). I also tried on a 40, but that was still a little too tight. I'm sure I'll fit one in a few weeks time. I was told to come back in an hour and my jeans would be ready.

I decided to walk around a bit and found myself on Damrak. Very busy place with all the tourists who managed to escape the Central Station.


I walked past the St. Nicolas Church and found a terrace on the bridge of the Oude Zijds Kolk. The Kolk is part of the sluice system of Amsterdam which floods the canals every night to wash away stagnant water. I sat down and had a Coke, after which I decided to walk to Mulligans.

o.z. kolk

I walked back to Warmoesstraat. I hadn't been here in donkey's years and saw that the street was now a pedestrian area. Much better, and much nicer walking now that you don't get run down by cars.


From Warmoesstraat I walked to Damrak.The other side of the street was full of tourists, but the Bijenkorf side was relatively quiet.

more tourists on damrak

The nearer I got to Amstel, the busier it got. When I stopped to take a photo of the Mint tower, people kept bumping into me.


When I finally walked onto Amstel I understood why it was so busy. I had completely forgotten that the Gay Pride parade was on today. The Amstel was mad busy with people, music stages and beer stands.

quiet part of amstel

I made it to Mulligans, where the only people I knew were working behind the bar: Barry & Max. All the guests were Gay and Proud. I had one Coke and left, back to Nieuwendijk to fetch my jeans.

After picking up the jeans I took a #5 tram to Leidsplein, where I wanted to switch to a #7. My hip had started to hurt a little bit (in spite of 2×600 mg ibuprofen!), and I didn't want to overload it. The tram took ages to get through Leidschestraat and the reason for that was obvious when we hit the Prinsengracht. Thousands of people on the bridge watching the Gay Pride boats. I made a photo from the tram which gives an idea of the crowd.

update@22:50: according to AT5 news there were 400.000 people watching the canal parade

prinsengracht / leidschestraat

I got on the #7 and walked home from the Oosterpark stop, doing some shopping on the way in Erik's Deli on Beukenplein, which still has the best cheeses in this part of town. After I stuffed the cheese in the fridge I went out again to the Natraj Indian restaurant where I had a Chicken Tikka Tandoori with Naan. Very nice.

update@21:30: I've just had a DIY-attack and disassembled the 3-seat IKEA sofa. It now stands on the balcony and my neighbour has promised to help me bring it downstairs on monday evening (garbage collection day). Now I can go to IKEA sometime next week and order my new EKTORP sofa.


Nicole said...

Great photos Kees! Haven't seen Damrak and Munt for a while. Good luck with IKEA!

Vincent said...

Crazy people in Amsterdam hehe.

Nice photo's :-)

Juf Jo said...

Thank god I wasnt in Amsterdam this weekend.