I think if I’m being honest, that Amsterdam suffered in comparison to Barcelona, partially because of the weather, and partially because I missed carrying on conversations in broken Spanish. There were some really amazing things about the city, though, and most of them were not marijuana or sex-worker related (although I must tell you, I saw some astonishingly well-articulated examples of both during my brief stay there). At the show we had booked, I met some incredible poets and organizers in the city, and great performances were put in by Jade, Dareka Daremo, and Daan Doesborgh. I felt like my set suffered a little bit (crazy heckler dude fucked up my game, so did some mic feedback, and my OWN CELL PHONE GOING OFF during a rather intense poem). All that said, I chatted up some guys from a punk band called the O.D. Kids after the show, smoked a bunch of bummed Gauloises, and vowed to return again and triumph over heckling and mic problemos.
So, some more good things about Amsterdam: in the time before the show, we were led around by our friend and host Onno, who pointed out a few of the cool local points of interest and cultural markers. One thing that stood out: a barge covered in rusty bicycles, fished out of the canal. Apparently, bikes are so numerous in Amsterdam that the discarded or lost bikes can actually clog the water to a boat-defying degree:
Jade and I both got to eat a ‘traditional’ Dutch meatloaf sandwich at a café—which was so good, you could have told me it was made out of people and I’d have wiped my mouth with a napkin corner and asked for another.