Sunday, our last day, in Amsterdam

Sunday morning, our last day in Amsterdam and even the city was sad that we had to leave. It was raining. We made our way into the city to check out the mansion tour of one of the old mansions that lined the canals to see how the rich lived back in the day. On the way we hung out at the classic Amsterdam coffee shop, Starbucks. It was a good place to get dry, warm and use the toilet. After a warm hot chocolate we went to the museum and explored the many rooms. It was a very vertical house as they all are, lots of stairs and the taller ceilings made the stairs even higher! Typical rich mansion though, servants and kitchen downstairs, entertaining rooms in the middle including those for women and men. The garden was lovely and closer to a french style than a lot of the others we’ve seen.

After the museum thankfully it had stopped raining, we went back to Leidseplein, the main square and stopped at one of the pancake houses for more pancakes for lunch! Yummy yummy. Oddly enough on this trip through the square there were these huge yellow structures that took me a few minutes to figure out what they were. They were temporary public urinals. We had seen many throughout Amsterdam that were fixed, but this was a first portable ones. Had to keep the kids from touching too, yuck! And while I support their efforts to keep the intoxicated crowd aiming in the right direction, they have all these public urinals for men, but what about women?  Apparently we’re just out of luck, no public bathrooms for us.

After lunch we got home and Celia and Josie took a nap after being exhausted from the long trip the day before and so many busy days. Josie hardly ever naps anymore and hadn’t since the first day of the trip. Once Celia woke up I took her out for a walk around the neighborhood. She had just recently discovered her pockets and liked to pick up small rocks and stow them away for later much to the chagrin of my washing machines.

This set of photos also shows a unique part of Amsterdam living, the green bins behind her in the picture below are the trash barrels. There are laws about workers not having to pick up things that are too heavy so they have these special chutes that go under the street and trucks come around to empty them so no one has to pick up the trash. Took us a bit to figure out where our trash was supposed to go and what those wierd mailbox like boxes were out in the street!

We went around the block and discovered a playground too where local kids were ever so kind with Celia and sharing their toys. It’s amazing how well they can all communicate given the language barrier and Celia’s few words at that time too!

After our playtime, we went back home and packed up some for our trip home. We then headed to Vondelpark where we heard there was a restaurant next to a playground so everyone could be happy together. We found it and after a small mis-ordering of a salad that came covered in fish (“That’s how all these salads are here!”) we got some dinner and the girls did more digging in the sand and climbing before we headed back to our apartment for our early morning flights.

One thing we specifically did not do while in Amsterdam that most people would do is the Anne Frank house and all that kind of tourism activity. We decided not to open up that discussion with Josie as she’s old enough to notice what’s going on, but too young for me to want to explain the horrors of war. We also missed the big museum as we didn’t think it would interest the kids too much. All in all though we were quite satisfied in seeing our top sights that we wanted to see and combining it with our childrens attention spans.

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