ODD & EVEN PERSPECTIVES-2004 Trip- Day#5

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LastHamlet
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ODD & EVEN PERSPECTIVES-2004 Trip- Day#5

Postby LastHamlet » Fri Aug 27, 4:04 am

Day #5 ... The Magic Play We Call Amsterdam...


It was June 28th 2004, and the weather this day was really nice. Sure, there and about was the occasional drizzle, but nothing that lasted more than a minute or two. The kind of day you hope for in Amsterdam. A good bit of sun, a small cloud or two, one or two soft drizzles and very long days in the summer time. What more can you ask for in the city we love.

Well, for us 'older crowd' we were out late last night, by our standards anyhow, so we slept a little late this morning. It is safe to assume that we did miss breakfast.(What can we say???) After I awoke I went to the little Supermarket to get some ice to fill the cooler, couple of colas, and a cool looking AMS lighter for a souvenir to someone back home. Climbing back to the top of the room, and Maid Marian was still halfway asleep. It was 10:30 and I made it to the window view and gave the city a peep. In all the other rooms in the Hotel there are giant windows, these are different. To anyone who has stayed in the top floor of a 'Canal Home', you know what the windows are like. If you have not seen these windows they are a trip. In every place they are a little different, but usually smaller and further up the wall than other rooms. Here, there are 5 huge steps and a landing at the top, which is the bottom base of the window. It gives one a perfect perch to view all the way past Montblanc tower. On a clear day, I am not sure the view really stops, it is just that my eyes have an ending focal point, at some unknown distance. It is just that point that there is no more clarity in the vision, when it comes to the 'way off' distance.

I ponder the worlds troubles, the worlds fortunes, the things that we get to see as we walk through this little play we call Life. This window has the view that brings me back time and time again, and such is really enchanting. If nothing but the noises and people that give this place an enchanted feeling, you have to add to that, the sights, museums, canals & canal rides, trams, beautiful little hide-away nooks, and might I mention the coffeeshops. It is an on going set of magical events put into play by some unknown conductor. A conductor that seems to know the right time to add this element of the play, when to pick up the pace, and slow it down. Whoever this ‘Conductor’ may be, blessed are his efforts to pull off the real life concerto we call Amsterdam.

(Man, I have been smoking it already this morning, haven’t I???) (AND, it could get worse...)

Seeing how MM needed some time to get together, I decided to head down to Stix Coffeeshop for a morning smoke. It is usually not crowded at all this time of morning, and makes for a nice place to light up. It is right up the Utrechtsestraat, and MM can find it all too well. Even though we have only been here 4 days she is getting her ‘AMS Bearing’, at least in our general area that is. I felt confident that she could make it to Stix, so I headed on down the stairs and the straat. (Skipping to the beat of ‘Green Onions’ by ‘Booker T’, that just happening to be playing in one of the corner cafes at the corner of Kerkstraat and Utrechtsestraat. Faintly mind you, but I could hear it. Dahhhh, Dah, Dah, Dah, Dah.......

Stix Coffeeshop is always very pleasant. It has the look and feel of a 1950's American soda shop, and is always spotlessly clean. <<<I have mentioned this many times, I know, but it is a quaint little place. The music is always different, pending who is working the counter when you are there. I have never heard it blasting though, and whatever they play seems inviting to the ears. The mirrored walls on each side of the shop gives the illusion that the shop is twice as big. It does have an upper floor, and a lower level with the toilets on, but the main entrance level is just a bit larger than the Grey Area Coffeeshop. Not to mention their menu is hanging on the wall, what a trip. When you first see it, it just looks blacked out. You have to push the light above it to see the menu page light up.
With several choices on the menu, and I ask the Budtender to show me the "Jack Herrar" (This is the way it was spelled on their menu.) It looked simply fabulous, so I said to give me that bud right their. A perfect 1.5 gram bud,, which was 9 Euros in total. Well, a bit more than that actually, seeing how I needed a drink. While I was at it, I need a couple of lighters as well. (Can never have too many lighter souvenirs.) Now, I must say the bud was really beautiful, with what I call 'Frost' all over it. Had a sweet smell, especially if you slightly squeezed it. After looking it over till I was in the drool state, I had to crumble it up for the joint I was preparing. At just a gram and a half, that seems to be a bit light for me. Well, I am getting older and finding myself in a position in life where I can't really smoke as much as even just a few years ago. Time has taken its toll taken on the body and more moderation must be practiced. YEAH! I say this knowing full well in two days I am going on a coffeeshop crawl. (Okay, I guess moderation after that???)
On the subject of the up and coming crawl, I had to score several more grams of the Shiva and a couple of grams of Purple Power here at Stix for rolling our required joints for the big event. I have been gathering ‘grammage’ the last few days and rolling up many perfect ‘1.5-gram Hooters’ for the big event. All will be explained on the 7th day of our wonderful vacation, as that is the targeted day for the ‘hopefully?’ 20-Shop Crawl.
Ahhh, enough of that for now.
Well, after not being inside for more than 30 minutes Maid Marian shows up, “a little bleary” (Just kiddin’) I think she found me from my smoke alone, from at least a half a block away. Although, I am cutting back a little, my joints don’t smoke any less. :) Joining me for a bit in the ‘Jack’ bud, she needed a coffee or two to get her going. After that she was charged up for the beginning of another day in the grown-ups wonderland, so to speak.

After missing breakfast it was essential that we get some food down the neck immediately... Just out the door to the right and up a bit is the Herengracht fish stand. Now one of these wonderful packed broodjes was just not enough for me, so I had a Crab Salad Broodje and a Dutch Shrimp Broodje... Dam!!! They were both off the chart, just as tasty each time I get a mouth full. MM went for the Tuna-fish Broodje and had nearly the same reaction to hers. Well, not as enthusiastic as I, but found it to be just what was needed to fuel the tank. I don’t mess around much with these tasty sandwiches, and nearly finished both of mine before she got done wit hers. Keep in mind, I got mine one at a time, and the Fish Stand was not exactly empty of customers between my two part gobble. After finishing off the morning joint at Stix, I had a mean case of the eats. However, two hit the spot rather nicely.
With a ciggy smoked afterwards it was but a mere walk up and around the Rembrandtplein. We sat on one of the benches and just admired all the wonderful sights and such. I couldn’t help but to notice that there were some different trams on the normally quite tram #4 line. The number #9 & 14 Trams could not go on their normal routes, due to some track repairs. Neither could go straight through Rembrandtplein and over the Blue Bridge. They were forced to go down Utrechtsestraat. This was an added bonus as we could now take a #9, #14, or a #4, and that makes getting to and from Central Station and other parts, a lot easier.
We had walked what seemed like 20 miles yesterday, so we were in no hurry today. We would walk a block or so and just check out the scenery. I bet it took us nearly an hour and a half to make it near the Rokin area. (As I said we were just checking out the sights, scenery and interesting people.) At this point we decided to grab a tram to check emails from family and friends. Oh Yeah! I had to send one to Moe and tell him we really loved Molly Malone’s, as he was the one that suggested we have a meal there.
I had an email from Nogbin saying he was at Siberie Coffeeshop and was available for a hook up. However, it was three o’clock and he had written he would be there at 2. We chanced that he might be late and went immediately to the Siberie. He wasn’t there upon our arrival and we were still hoping to get a chance to say hello. In my last two visits I have always managed to meet up with him, and I so wanted him to meet Maid Marian. Well, as luck would have it, there was no Nogbin, and apparently he had left shortly before we arrived. After being there till 4:30 we were just about ready for some food.
I thumbed through my little ‘self-made guidebook’ and scanned through the ‘Restaurants’ section. Ahhh! The Cafe Luxembourg on Spuistraat. That sounds like a wonderful choice!!! I have been a few times and have never been disappointed. The restaurant sits in a beautiful area, just down the street from Kantjil en de Tijger Restaurant, and around the corner from Dutch Flowers Coffeeshop. From the terrace of the Cafe Luxembourg you can see the entrance of the Begijnhof. That quaint little courtyard with the church in the middle. (If you want to experience a real interesting sound illusion, you must visit that little courtyard. You go inside there, and no matter how many trams come by Spui, or what kind of noise commotion is going on, you seem to hear nothing. Nothing but the noise and talk from the immediate crowd. Really serene place, and like no other with it sound wall barrier and solitude.)
The Luxembourg is a nice place on the inside, and is mostly of wooden featured decor. Rather large by AMS standards and has plenty of seats. However, plentiful in seats as they may be, at times it is hard to get a table. Their wait staff is always of the friendly yet firm European demeanor. In other words, a lot of the times I order 2 colas right off the bat. I have noticed that if you drink a lot of soda with your meal, it can be just a bit intricate to get their attention in mid-meal. Which is really a better way to do it when given the thought of the alternative... Sometimes back in the States, at the very point when you have just taken a huge bite, the waiter will show up right then to get your comments on the meal. What are you supposed to do, give them one of those oozing ‘mashed potato’ smiles....LOL... (If I have just taken a full bite and am chewing right along,,,,,, I am good with the meal.) So, you just nod your head and resist the urge to do something beyond silly. Resisting that adolescent move that leaves one sleeping alone that night, as you will have removed all doubt in your date’s mind.
As usual the meal was rather nice. We had such a wonderful time, I had to think about whether I ate or not? Just kitten’ there, I had a wonderful open face ham & cheese broodje, and MM had the same. The cheese had a rather unique flavor and MM said she loved the taste of it. Paying the nearly 17 Euro tab with a 20(Checking with MM first to see if that was the right tip amount, as she is trying to get a handle on my over-tipping situation.), all seemed well.
Three steps outside the door we were standing on the curb and pondering checking out something new. (It is so light outside, neither one of us realized it is nearly a quarter past seven.) Well, a silver Mercedes was in sight just as we were half the way across the road. I held up a wave and a quick stop, off in the cab we went. Headed to check out the Pollinator at an address I had gotten from a fellow Channelite. (Cornelistroostraat 37) After circling about, in an apparent effort to pad the bill the cabby finally pretended to find the addy. Needless to say, with a bill of 9,35 Euro, for such a short ‘direct drive’ that it would have been, I only gave the cabby a 10 spot. (Hey, he did choose to earn his tip the other way,,,, so be it.)
Well, as it turned out the place did seem rather quiet and even closed for that matter. Not to mention the sigh didn’t say pollinator on the building. It was a type of grow-shop, but the place had the steel door pulled down, so you couldn’t see inside. Hummm, wonder what has happened to the Pollinator??? Well, at this point we were a good bit out and it was about eight in the evening. The temperature was perfect in the low 70’s and we decided to walk around the neighborhood a bit. I remembered that ‘LTD’ had mention wanting some reckon on Space Mountain Coffeeshop, and it was real near here.


Within a few blocks of rambling around we found the Space Mountain Coffeeshop. It looks rather quiet from the outside and we decided to go on in. The shop is not very big, but looked rather comfy. It had a few stellar pictures on the walls, and basic yellow colored walls. A few tables and a sofa as I recall. It seemed like somebody's living room with a bar added in at the back wall. First thing I saw was the fellow behind the counter. He seemed rather friendly but his eyes were nearly popped out of his head while taking a gander at Maid Marian. Humm, me thinks blondes attract his attention.??? He was a nice middle eastern fellow, and quickly displayed his menu. It was a limited menu, with just general names on the goods. I decided to try some of his stuff and see what it was all about. The Afghan Hash was 9 Euros. I decided to try it, seeing how it was one of the more pricey items on the menu I felt it might be a good representation. We only briefly stayed and finish a couple of colas. I lit my carry-along pipe, which was loaded with weed already, but I put a small piece of the hash on top of it to get the flavor.

The small piece had a creamy flavor to it, as befitting the medium color and texture it had. We didn't really stay that long as we felt that what few customers that were there were regulars. It seemed that our appearance was a slight stymie to their normal activities. I sensed that they rarely got tourists, so it must have been just a bit unusual when we wandered up out of nowhere. Nonetheless, it was a really nice little neighborhood shop, and given having the time to come out this way, I would recommend it. Maybe you should not bring such a pretty blonde headed woman with you though, as it tends to render the fellow speechless for a minute.

We wandered quite a bit more and came upon some tram tracks to which would take us to more familiar ground. After a few trams we were in the vicinity of the Hemp Hotel, right around the block from our Hotel. This is where I figured we would gather some info on Mila and the new location of their Pollinator store. They had a ton of flyers and gave us several, of which I seemed to remember something familiar about the address. (I must have read it somewhere... Nieuwe Herengracht ... Hummm???)

Now in the midst of gather info and having a cold looza, Mila son in law was chatting with us quite a bit. He was not the fellow behind the counter, but just happened to be in there at the time. He and Mila's Daughter had not long had their own addition to the family. I think only once I heard a peep out of the little fellow, wrapped in his little blue blanket. The lobby area is small, but always a place to grab a seat. It has low-lighting as not to bright-out ones buzz. It looks basically the same as when I first seen the Hotel years ago. It has its quaint little charm, and I don't ever feel underdressed here. They have a very relaxed kind of atmosphere, and lighting up your jay is never a problem. After a bit MM and I decide to head around the block to our own room,

I am much more pumped up at this point, so I told MM that I would be back in a bit. I needed to check my email to see what happened to Nogbin, and a good late evening walk is a good thing a times. Seeing how the trams are a bit slow this evening, I decide to do the quick slice path through the city. Not that there is not a ton of places to check your email between here and Internet City, but I had several tickets from there, and as I said a walk can be a good thing.

Within 15 minutes I was at Internet City, and what time I made. I came up Utrechtsestraat, through Rembrandtplein, at Munt Tower veer slightly left onto the Kalverstraat, which after crossing Dam Square becomes Nieuwendijk, and you are pretty much there. As I passed by the intersection where Oudebrugsteeg is, I saw an interesting fellow. He was of Asian descent, and had very long hair and a very long 'Fu-Man-Chu' kind of beard and mustache. Not to be poking fun, but he really looked like a few of the characters I had seen on Saturday Afternoon Kung Fu Classics, I had seen since I was younger. I only point this out, cause I will see him again later.

After checking my e-mail I had to check the forum and see what had been happening as of late. Several threads drew a bit of interest to me. I remember one about the Pollinator, and how they are really in the business of selling Ice Hash. I really had no idea until this point that such was the case, as I have never been to the shop at either of its locations. I still plan on visiting the shop though, but not in pursuit of a purchase, just to save a few bucks on something that is so easy to acquire a coffeeshop. Instead to check out this Pollinator method, and buy some rolling papers, hemp body lotion, and several other items. I guess it would be good to save a few bucks on something, but not at the expense of someone else's livelihood.

After reading a bit, I needed to go by De Kuil to get some more of that Parvati Creme for Maid Marian. She really liked it the other night, so I better get her a little more. It is a pick me up kind of buzz, whereas a lot of what I smoke is Indica. Most people get the knock-down effect from Indica, however, it works quite the opposite on me. It is much like a lightin' just struck me. Lighting me up like a globe, and giving me quite the energy rush. To me Indica is like Gamma Rays to the Incredible Hulk.(Causing a power transformation of sorts...) 25 Euros is the price for 2 g's of the Parvati Creme Hash, as I remember correctly. Not only that, StemsnSeeds is also inside De Kuil, and I do remember him correctly. He is his same cheerful self, and asked where MM was. I told him I walked her to death, and she is having her shoes re-capped...LOL.. Now, you know I had to joke... Na, I told him that she was a little walked out, seeing how we must have walked a whole lot over the last few days. You know, Stems is like a natural fixture of De Kuil, and it seems like he fits right into the environment. Although, I remember us talking when we first met, and he said he likes Rookies as well. He had mentioned that they had a Northern Lights strain that he really liked. Hummm, I might have to try that... Stems is an easy going fellow and easy to strike up a conversation with. (I wish him all the best in his endeavors in life.)
Well, it seemed the place was pretty jumping, so I decide to finish my cola and head on out. Bidding farewell to Stems, I headed back to the room for the evening. Returning the same waking route as I had arrived upon. Making it past Munt in record time, and I must say I can truly slice through this town. Just as I am one block from Stix, headed back, I see 'Fu-Man-Chu' again. Walking in the same direction as I am now. Hummm, he must make a real slow pace, as I checked email, bought hash, sipped a cola and had a brief conversation, and still managed to pass him on the way back this direction. He must have took the ‘stand and gawk’ scenic pace???

Okay, Baby I’m home! My sweetie pie has not been out of the shower long and can’t believe I am already back. I told her of seeing StemsnSeeds again, and we spoke of him a while. I had to take my nightly shower and then with the passing of the bong we were like ships that crashed in the night. Life is good, Life is grand, and Life has never been grander than in Amsterdam. So, the smoke will fade into the musk of the land of no real darkness. Just a slightly dark sky and the evening will turn into the next day...

Dreaming dreams in a land that can’t be real;
Which is the dream I wonder, what is this we feel???



Many Happy Dreams..
Best Regards,
LastHamlet

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a bollocks
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Postby a bollocks » Fri Aug 27, 4:25 am

thanks for givin' SodaClamKloot his time.


Excellent timing and excellent part sank.



WOOT!

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cmamste52
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Postby cmamste52 » Fri Aug 27, 8:15 am

Thanks again LH, Maid Marian and OHD! I have truly appreciated and enjoyed your trip reports and OHD's day by day adventures....I look forward to sharing my adventures on my next trip to the promised land!

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Postby Boner » Fri Aug 27, 11:32 am

Excellent report LH, I must admit I've been frantically checking the trip report section for the latest installment and it definitly didn't dissapoint - Thanks...

...Boner...

brandx

Postby brandx » Fri Aug 27, 3:37 pm

X
Last edited by brandx on Wed Oct 03, 4:53 am, edited 1 time in total.

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dannymac
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Postby dannymac » Fri Aug 27, 4:30 pm

As always, another great trip report LH.
I'm sorry you didn't impress upon me how nice Stix was last year when we were both in the 'Dam. I know you and BlueBerry had mentioned stopping there several times, but I just didn't make the time for it.
I'm definately gonna visit it in April.

Still anxiously awaiting your Crawl report so I can add a link (and a grand splash, bein' that it's now the official record) from www.coffeeshopcrawl.com

I've been so damn busy lately though, I haven't had time to update the site as of late. Your record breaking crawl though will give me incentive to bring the place up to date with your crawl and several others.

ps: if anybody notices some crawls (must have an associated trip report here at channels) missing from www.coffeeshopcrawl.com , please let me know and I'll get the credit and links put up.

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LaTristesseDurera
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Postby LaTristesseDurera » Fri Aug 27, 9:24 pm

Thanks for the Space Mountain review. it's on my list for the next trip...
The vividness of your reports make the fact that I wont visit until Dec all the more painful...

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Dogbreath
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Postby Dogbreath » Sat Aug 28, 4:18 pm

Yet another excellent report.

The mystery of the ''Fu-Man-Chu' man continues. Makes me wonder if 'Fu-Man-Chu' man will have an important role in future field reports.

Perhaps he be your personal spiritual advisor... your Zen Master?

Dogbreath :-)

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Postby Otis » Sat Aug 28, 5:35 pm

really nice report and I enjoyed it, takes me back...thanks so much

Otis

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Postby Banks » Sun Aug 29, 4:36 pm

Great work, LH, great work! I know we have more than a few coming!

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I enjoy writing about AMS

Postby LastHamlet » Mon Aug 30, 4:00 am

Thanks for all the wonderful replies and responses.
D'Mac the 7th day will be the crawl report. I am working on it now, as MM is working on day #6.
Thanks to All Again for the kind words. Some find these reports a bit lengthy, but the details can make a great insight.
Many Best Regards,
LastHamlet

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Postby Pirate » Mon Aug 30, 4:34 pm

The ya go, Last Hamlet... a worthy adversary indeed. Thanks for the trip report!
I'm getting a new hand, by the way... some cobbler down the street... goes by the name 'Giapetto,' I believe...

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Postby sdshadow » Thu Sep 02, 2:41 am

I really love reading your reports and they motivate me to make some timely reports in October after my September trip.

Thank you so much for sharing and I hope you and MM have many years of happy Amsterdam bliss together.

SDShadow

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Postby moe. » Thu Sep 02, 7:38 pm

Sorry I took so long to reply...computer issues. I have no problem with long reports as long as the content is worth reading. Yours fits that bill. Once again I'm glad you liked Molly's and I just happen to know that you went there again, so they will get a bit more press. They deserve it, the food is good and the atmosphere very warm and relaxing. Keep 'em comin' you two.

moe.

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Cab Driver........Ugh

Postby Maid Marian » Sat Sep 04, 11:34 am

Yes, it was a good thing to not tip him. I didn't even know the area, and I knew he was driving around in circles. He would have 'fared' much better had he taken us the way he should have....as LH does tip really well when deserved.........Oh well, his loss.

BTW, we DID walk 20 miles the day before, but it was worth it.

I have been working non-stop the past 3 weeks, but I will work on day 6 this weekend and try to get it posted, as the crawl is on day 7.........

Wonderful report sweetie and another great day..........


Peace...........MM

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Postby jerkypete49 » Mon Sep 13, 2:01 pm

YOW!!! Great LOOONNNGGG report. It would take me anhour to type that much :D

Keep up the good work! (Thumbs up!!!)

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Postby Max Flower » Sat Jan 30, 9:23 pm

Bump.


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