We changed time-zones when we came to Amsterdam and I forgot to re-set the clock on my MP3 player, so I woke up at 6:10 this morning instead of my planned 5:10. I also have to remember that Daylight Savings Time is coming up soon too and that will really throw me off! I was a bit rushed when I first got up, but things got better.
We went back to Amsterdam for the morning today. I ended up winding up and down the beautiful yet very confusing streets and canals and, after getting briefly lost, I ended up in the Red Light District again. All the hooligans and workers of the night had gone home, so I took a stroll and examined the mess from the weekend before.
I then found a street of windows where the "women of the night" worked the night before. The women had closed the blinds and turned off their lights and gone home hours ago, so I took the opportunity to take a few pictures.
After I did, however, I took a look down the block to my left and I saw, five windows down, was an escort still working. I wasn't sure if she saw me take pictures or not, and I didn't want to stick around and find out if she had, so I shoved my camera into my jacket pocket and fled down the opposite direction. Thinking back, I don't think she was even looking in my direction.
I purchased a few post-cards and a "Don't Drink and Drive - Smoke and Fly" t-shirt, and found my way to the National Monument (which was a triangle on the ground that I walked over about a thousand times looking for) and the Anne Frank House.
I wasn't allowed to take pictures inside the house (which isn't her actual house, but was built to look just like it -- which was only a few blocks away) to protect the artifacts and pieces of the diary. It was a wonderful museum and I recommend anybody who is a fan of the diary or her less-well-known short-stories to go to the museum. I also bought some post-cards there as well.
Many of my fellow travelers had been feeling last-nights activities and are very tired and quiet today. My roommate, Ralph, didn't get home until about 3:30 AM and I don't recall opening the door and letting him in.
Tonight is our one night that we can catch up with our sleep and go for some wine-tasting. I plan to skip that and instead take pictures of St. Goar and the Rhine River.
Oh, before I forget: Flip told us that Vatican City would be closed the day we get to Rome, so we may have to leave Venice early and try to make it there on time, or go to the Roman Coliseum instead. I really want to go to the Vatican (it's on my bucket-list), but the Coliseum would be cool too.
With everybody around me sleeping, I'm getting tired myself. I'll write later.
And, as always, a big thank you to my sweetheart Jessica Nuttall for proof reading a countless number of my articles. I couldn't do any of this without you. I love you.
Last year I put together 50 Images That Showcase Regina, and it was very successful. However, I did that article early into the year and missed out on some pictures I would take later, so I decided to do it again this year. These pictures were all taken either in late 2015 or in 2016.
If you guys enjoy this article as much as you liked the last one, I might start making this an annual thing.
Some of you may recognize a few of these pictures from earlier in the year, but there should be a few here that none of you have ever seen before.
Part 12 of my cross Canada series takes us to the smallest province in Canada, Prince Edward Island. However, don't let the name confuse you: PEI is actually 232 islands!
PEI also happens to have smallest population of any province in Canada, with only 146,300 people as of 2014. This means this province has less people than my hometown Regina!
Being so small, however, it was difficult to find images on Instagram. That isn't to say there's nothing there worth seeing! Quiet the quandary, actually. PEI has a few very unique locations that drive their tourism. One of them is the gorgeous themed village of Avonlea, named after the village in the hit novel "Anne of Green Gables" published in 1908. This story, and the subsequent stories, follows Anne, a red-haired "fiery" orphan who grows up on PEI. The story is an international bestseller, and is strangely very popular in Japan (or so I've been told)!
A few months ago I entered a contest for a trip for two to visit Philadelphia on Two Bad Tourists. Normally contests like this are limited to United States residents so when I saw this one was open to Canadians I jumped at the chance. I've never won something like this before, so I actually forgot about it until I got the emailing saying I had won. Two Bad Tourists then worked alongside Visit Philly to organise the trip for me and my mother to explore Philadelphia for three days. Visit Philly paid for our flights, hotels and gave us a VIP Pass to experience the city to our heart's content. It is thanks to them that this trip is possible.
Several movies and television shows have tried to capture the essence of Philadelphia over the years – from the boxing Blockbuster Rocky, to the paranormal thriller The Sixth Sense, to It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia and even Boy Meets World – but each described the city differently. There is no easy way to approach a city as dynamic as The City of Brotherly Love. With countless layers of art, history, religion and the paranormal, Philadelphia is a city unlike any other throughout the United States.
One thing that surprised me the most about Philadelphia was the history. The city was founded and designed by William Penn, who is also the state of Pennsylvania's namesake. Born in London, England in 1644 he lived through The Great Fire of 1666 and The Great Plague of London from 1665-1666. Both events shaped Penn's life so he designed the city to be strictly stone buildings (to stop fires from spreading) and to have plenty of space between the buildings (as to prevent illness from spreading). This led to the older areas of the city to have winding corridors between old stone walls.