The Best Laid Plans

Pim de Koel, Monday, May 13, 2013 , 16 Views

The Best Laid Plans

Poet Robert Burns once wrote, "The best laid schemes of mice and men, Go often awry" Burns, an Irishmen, obviously never spent time in Amsterdam. The epitome of foresight, Holland's capital was built on a series of canals, created for both convenience and defense. Though it is easily navigable by land, the best way to see the sights in Amsterdam may very well be by boat. For all of the hydromaniacs out there, Amsterdam's canals possess a culture all their own. What you call a water (italics) view, we call "not close enough." Canal culture is something that is uniquely Amsterdam. Dotted with houseboats and floating markets, life on the canals strikes the perfect balance between worldliness and individuality.

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Poet Robert Burns once wrote, 

"The best laid schemes of mice and men,
Go often awry"

Burns, an Irishmen, obviously never spent time in Amsterdam. The epitome of foresight, Holland's capital was built on a series of canals, created for both convenience and defense. Though it is easily navigable by land, the best way to see the sights in Amsterdam may very well be by boat.

For all of the hydromaniacs out there, Amsterdam's canals possess a culture all their own. What you  call a water (italics) view, we call "not close enough."  Canal culture is something that is uniquely Amsterdam.  Dotted with houseboats and floating markets, life on the canals strikes the perfect balance between worldliness and  individuality.

I spent last evening on one such houseboat, accompanied by candlelight, Holland's finest cheese and my friend, Pieter, who makes his living by telling the world about the splendors of Amsterdam through his canal tours.

On this particularly starry evening, I kicked back and sipped my glass of sparkling lemonade while floating on the Singel.  I soaked in the city lights and breathed in the crisp Spring air. As I painstakingly savored the last bit of Gouda, I asked Pieter what made him want to start up his canal tour business.

"It's nights like this, Pim," he mused. "What better way to take in the culmination of hundreds of years of innovation and resilience than by floating through Amsterdam with fizzy drink in hand and friends in tow?"

A fitting embodiment of Holland, if I've ever heard one.

Keukenhof

The best place to see tulips in Holland is Keukenhof. Keukenhof is a park with 7 million flower bulbs surrounded by tulip fields.

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