One's destination is never a place but a new way of seeing things. -Henry Miller

Adventures in the Nether Netherlands (Part Two)

I’d like to preface this post by describing the company that I had alongside me for this wonderful trip, Sean Santiago. Sean is the coolest. He’s super fashionable and fun, and I feel so lucky to have him as a friend. He’s an excellent writer and photographer. In fact, we studied the same major in school, and he taught in China for a year after he graduated. We have a lot in common, and I love getting writing feedback from him since he does a lot of travel freelancing also (he helped with this article I wrote).  That said, since we hadn’t seen each other in over a year, this trip was slightly more about Annie & Sean (insert song here: “reuniteddddd and it feels so good!”) than it was about seeing Amsterdam (but that was kind of important, too).

Holland was the perfect destination for this puente because I got to take a little vacation from speaking Spanish. And no one gawked at me when I spoke English. It was really nice. The food and the culture was also very similar to the U.S. and since I won’t be making it home for another 6 months, the familiarity was appreciated.  Other than the freezing weather (it was horribly cold), I loved Holland. The architecture of the houses is amazing. I love how everyone bikes everywhere! I think I was Dutch in a past life.

Here’s what Sean and I did on our vacation:

Visited the Winter Wonderland in one of the main squares.

Ate dessert! There was a lot of dessert eating on this trip.


Did I mention dessert?

Visited the flea market.

Took a canal cruise!

Window shopped and looked at Christmas trinkets.

Looked at the flower market. So many tulip bulbs!

Ate dessert!

Souvenir shopped.

Visited the Van Gogh museum. There was no photography inside, but this is my favorite painting of his, and I got to see it in real life!

Oh yea, and we ate dutch pastries.

Amsterdam, what a beautiful city!

We concluded our journey by taking the train to Rotterdam. I wish I could have spent more time there, it seemed like a cool city. Much more modern with unique design.

Giant traffic cones in Rotterdam.

A lot of Rotterdam was destroyed during World War II. These lights on the sidewalk symbolize the line of where the city was destroyed.

Sean set-up a couchsurfing contact for us for our one night there. If you’ve never heard about couchsurfing (, it’s a website that connects travelers with people who have a couch or a spare bedroom. It’s a great way to save money, but it also gives you the opportunity to meet like-minded people and allows you to see a city from a local’s perspective. Arjane was our host, and she was so great! She took us to her friend’s house for dinner, where he had prepared a special dutch meal for us!  We all chatted for hours and drank Dutch beer.  The perfect ending to the trip.

The dutch meal. Some sort of kale and potato mash with sausage. Yummy!

Now I’m back in Spain and the weather is strangely warm. 80 degrees today! No better time to go exercise, now that I have just recounted all the pastries this weekend.



2 responses

  1. Aah! Love your face. Miss you so much already! Sooooo much fun! Sigh…

    December 11, 2010 at 12:01 am

  2. Erik Bowen

    Haha I love all the pics! They are so cheerful I feel! Also, all of your pastry nomming photos are a lot of fun. Sounds like a wonderful adventure!

    December 13, 2010 at 11:21 pm

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