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.
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About a year and a half ago I visited Kyiv, Ukraine. As I walked down the millennium old streets and gawked at the towering cathedrals, I saw the beginnings of a new country, one that was slowly rebuilding from a much darker time. The process of what I was seeing had a name. It was called decommunization.
Decommunization includes renaming architecture, changing laws and protocols, and even tearing down monuments. People's Friendship Arch in Kyiv, for example, which symbolised the friendship between the Communist East and the Capitalist West, was torn down. Some statues, like war memorials, are exempt, but there is still talk of making modifications to them. Anywhere you go throughout the former Soviet Union, the hammer and sickle are being removed – not from history, but from modern society.
My article "8 Places to Visit in Regina" is by far my most popular article, being read over 7,000 times in the past 6 months. In honour of the anniversary of my blog (and because 1 of the 8 locations mentioned before is now closed), I decided to do a sequel and talk about 8 more places to visit in Regina. This was really easy as Regina is growing at an extraordinary rate and new, incredible places are opening almost every week.
After the Regina Cyclone huffed and puffed and blew down the majority of houses across the city in 1912, Annie Darke asked her beloved Francis Darke to build her a house that could withstand even the worse things Saskatchewan could blow at it. Being one of the richest and most influential men in Regina’s history, Francis Darke took up the challenge and began to create his wife their very own stone castle.
This massive fortress served as their dwelling for the remainder of their days, until Francis Darke passed away in 1940 and his widowed wife passed away in the very house he had built her, twelve years later.
A few articles ago I listed Ogema as one of the top destinations to visit in Saskatchewan. Immediately after I wrote the article, I put my money where my mouth was and booked a weekend trip to Ogema for my girlfriend and me. I figured it wouldn't be fair to my readers to recommend a place for them to visit without actually visiting it myself, and after getting my new Galaxy S7 from TELUS I figured I needed a reason to test it out.
Earlier this year I took my Galaxy S6 to La Ronge, and had very little coverage. I wanted to use Facebook's new Live Video option, but I couldn't get enough service to even send a text message. I was pretty disappointed by the coverage with that provider, so I was interested to see how TELUS' network was in Ogema.
The result was pretty darn good! We streamed Spotify all the way there, were able to do a Live Video from the Deep South Pioneer Museum and took some really great pictures and videos of the trip. It also helped to have a reliable network when I got lost driving there (don't ask me how!). TELUS has invested over $29 billion into their network since 2000 and it has really paid off. It's a great feeling knowing that no matter where you travel, you can rely on TELUS to keep you connected.