One of the worst things that can happen when you travel is getting sick. Normally, I’m pretty good at packing different types of medicine (I’m lactose intolerant so I try to be prepared for everything). I was not prepared during my last trip to Ireland/The Netherlands. I was not prepared at all.
Catherine and I arrived in Amsterdam at 10am on January 5, 2017. By 4pm I was out dead, with a cold.
This cold/flu was not a surprise, as Catherine had been sick in the week leading up to our weekend trip from Dublin to Amsterdam. We’d been jumping from hostel to hostel leading up to this trip, so the fact that it took me so long to get sick was a miracle.
The cold did make my first 6 hours in Amsterdam a bit delirious. The beginnings of a cold for me are always the best. My body is just starting to shut down. Nose isn’t completely stuffed yet. Throat doesn’t feel like it’s on fire. My brain doesn’t care about simple discomforts. I can keep walking with no idea how bad my heels hurt.
This delirium also meant we were able to see almost “all” of Amsterdam in that first six hours of our trip. We started off at a breakfast house near the city center (it was so bad. I will never eat a savory crepe again). Followed by a walk around the canals and through many a thrift store, book shop, and bakery before our 3pm appointment at the Van Gogh Museum.
Before which we ate hot dogs and a fresh stroopwafel in the park (If you do visit Amsterdam make sure to get a hot stroopwafel, it’s the closest thing to magic). My gloves, pictured below, still have a bit of caramel stuck in them– totally worth it.
The Van Gogh museum was amazing, if not a bit too much, and far too crowded–even during off season! Our visit drained the last of my energy climbing up and down the stairs to the numerous exhibits. But it was super cool to see the evolution in Van Gogh’s style.
The real horror struck the next morning when I couldn’t drag myself out of bed. It snowed while we were sleeping so Amsterdam was coated in a light layer of white. The streets sparkling with melted water–a wonderland for people like me who love winter. I missed the Rijksmuseum, and more site seeing with Catherine, but that night I did manage to walk around the canals to see the lights as well as have a freaking delicious dinner of focaccia bread and dim sum at the foodhallen down the street: an indoor food market.
The only good thing that came out of sleeping away my second day in Amsterdam were the fever dreams I had during it. I tend to have weird dreams when my body is in it’s normal state, but add a cold into the mix and everything is turned up to 11.
Amsterdam isn’t my favorite place I’ve ever visited. It’s definitely a beautiful city. The canals themselves worth the plane ticket, and I hope to be able to explore them more one day. But I’ll always remember it because of how delirious I felt that first day. Sometimes colds can be useful for preserving memories. Though, I’d rather just never be sick again.
Hello all 🙂 Been to Amsterdam? What were your favorite places? What did you think of the Van Gogh museum?
Thanks for Reading!