...and it's hats off and a very difficult tot ziens Amsterdam.
Below, the final three days of Amsterdam compressed into a whole whack of photos. And a big thanks to the weather, for mostly cooperating.
Biking all over the city to soak it in, I hit classics like the Brouwerij t'IJ (open daily from 3pm-8pm only), went to a masterfully planned urban area called Westerpark, biked all over town, boogied a night away, strolled through de Pijp and stumbled through various goodbye beers.
You need years to uncover all this city has to offer. Open-air markets, over 1000 cafes, festival after festival, art, parks, and a seemingly endless selection of small spots to call your own and above all be yourself.
It was a fine way to bid farewell to my home of the past 11 months, or 2.5 months if you are reading this from the office of immigration. (i.e. I may be back very soon if work opportunities come to fruition).
It is cliched, yes, but the truth is that it's the people you meet that make it so difficult to leave. A public blog is not the place to really get into naming names, but it's been a very profound experience and I'm so grateful to have met dozens of cool, interesting, intelligent, passionate, kind, fun, and helpful people, a number of whom are now part of my life for good. My life has been enriched enormously.
To those who are thinking of making a similar leap: Go.
A standard snack at t'IJ? Hardboiled eggs and salt.
Westerpark, where nearby all the green space is a collection of theatres, cafes, and a great open-air market on Sundays
Dutch "poffertjes" - small pancakes, soon to be covered with butter and icing sugar