It is the time of year I have to renew my weapons license. I had an appointment at 09:00 at the Police Station on Johan Huizingalaan, opposite the Slotervaart Hospital. I took two trams to get there, a #3 and a #2. Total distance as measured by my GPS was 10.56 km travelled.
I was in and out in 10 minutes and decided to walk back. The weather was nice; a bit cloudy and not too warm. Perfect for walking. If only I didn't have that blister on my right heel...
Slotervaart is one of the 'sleeping suburbs.' Nothing ever happens here, unless you get stabbed to death in school. I walked towards town on Aletta Jacobslaan, which was dead boring. Once you're past the A10 ring road it is known as Vlaardinglaan, which is equally boring.
Between the A10 and the Schinkelgracht you walk back in time: the houses get older and more likable. On Rijnsburgstraat there's an old garden house which I thought belonged to a villa. It turns out the villa grounds are now a cemetary, but the tea house is still there.
On Sloterkade there are a few old houses hemmed in by modern stuff. I like the scale of these houses, much more on a human scale than the sleep bunkers they build nowadays.
An exeption I'll make is for the 'Lightfactory', a set of apartments right next to the old houses. The balconies are something to behold.
On the corner of Schinkelkade and Zeilstraat is a Bagels and Beans shop where I sat down for my morning coffee. They import their coffee from a small plantation in Panama where all the work is done by hand and workers get better pay than on other plantations. Good tasting coffee, too.
The influx of Polish workers is becoming more and more visible. This shop was 'gesloten', closed, but the sign underneath was in Polish. From what I could translate into Gaelic the shop has a CCTV and if you steal they'll always call the police.
I walked down Koninginneweg, turned right on Valeriusplein and walked under the Amsterdams Lyceum, an Amsterdam School Amsterdam School.
On the bridge behind the school somebody had sculpted a 1930s pedofile. I mean, what else could he be with that repressed look and the uneasy way he's touching that boy? The boy's not feeling easy, either. Definitely pedo.
I walked down Apollolaan, and across from the Hilton Hotel I saw a class of very young kids being told how to cross the street. The teacher was almost ran over by a car. Great demonstration of the principle.
Apollolaan is almost as boring as Slotervaart. Only rich people live here, so there's nothing to see on the street. All bicycles (if they have them) are locked in the garage next to their Rolls Royce. If you look into the side streets you do see more lively things; shops, bicylces and even people! The only interesting thing to see on Apollolaan was this gable stone. It being Apolloaan it was gilded, naturally.
I walked past Beethovenstraat where the rich people shop and not a soul in sight.
Past Scheldestraat where normal people live and they were visible.
And on to Churchilllaan. This was slightly more lively than Apollolaan, but only just.
Rijnstraat was still a mess, even more so than last time I looked.
Down Vrijheidslaan to the Berlagebrug and across.
I turned left onto Weesperzijde and right onto Ringdijk (the part between Amstel and the railroad). A group of studemts was renting a bunch of scooters to go around town.
I crossed Wibautstraat and walked home through Kraaipanstraat. It is one of the nicest little streets in my neighbourhood. When I got home I had walked (according to the GPS) 10.54 km. That's 200 meters less than the tram. It took me longer, though.
In the afternoon I went to Beukenplein; I had to buy cheese for HC in Germany, whom I'll see this weekend. I bought 1.5 kilos of different old Dutch cheeses. I hope he likes them.
I had dinner in the ThaiCoon. Later in the evening Miss Jo came visiting; she's looking for a 'new' old camera and wanted to see if I had something for her. I didn't, but I'll see if I can find something.