Vacation--Tuesday, May 23 (We made it!)

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We got in at 5:30a Tuesday, Amsterdam-time, which was around 11:30p-ish (Monday night) to our bodies. Neither of us had been able to sleep much on the place, so although we were doing more-or-less okay in the morning, we knew we'd hit our wall at some point early afternoon.

We were able to stretch out and rest for about a half hour before showering, changing clothes, and meeting up with our tour group for the day's itinerary.

Riejksmuseum  

Riejksmuseum  

Our first scheduled activity was just a walking tour from our hotel to the center city of Amsterdam, which is only a few blocks away. Our guide is good enough but I'd like to have gotten more historical information and detail about architecture and stuff. To be fair, we've had some excellent guides in our time who have set a very high bar for us, so this guide is certainly sufficient. 

Our walking tour ended with a brief tram ride over to the Riejksmuseum, which was top on my list of what I wanted to do while here. I love me some Dutch Masters. Unfortunately, remember that wall I said we'd eventually hit? Slammed into it full force in the museum. Both my husband and I were quite literally falling asleep on our feet. After our guided tour through some of the highlights of the museum we were given about an hour to see whatever we wanted to on our own. Unfortunately, it was all we could do to drag our sorry butts to the museum cafe for tea, where we kept dozing off over our cups.

"Dancing" houses--all leaning against each other at odd angles from centuries of settling. (These are from the early 1700s, if I recall. We saw them from 1640s to 1890s.) 

"Dancing" houses--all leaning against each other at odd angles from centuries of settling. (These are from the early 1700s, if I recall. We saw them from 1640s to 1890s.) 

Fortunately, we had a couple hours' break between getting back to the hotel after the morning excursion and meeting up again for a canal cruise, so we were able to take short naps to take some of the edge off. Still, it's now 7:15p and I'm sitting in my pajamas in bed writing this post, planning on going to sleep as soon as I'm done!

The canal cruise was nice although we were still dozy, and we made a not-so-great seating choice so I don't feel we saw things as well as we could. Still, it gave us a good orientation to the city and, after dinner (at a great little hole-in-the-wall Italian place near our hotel with a great waitress who was a hoot), we were able to wander back along some of the canals again to see more clearly what we were supposed to be looking at the first time.

Weather was perfect today: 60s and sunny. (Yes, 60s is perfect for these Western NYers.)

Tomorrow we have the morning on our own and then we transfer to our riverboat in the early afternoon. We plan on just doing more wandering. But first, 12 hours of sleep if I can make it!