Saturday, August 30, 2008

Late Night Random Thoughts

Amsterdam has everything you could ever want, if you wanted what it had to offer. You can have your foot massaged, you can do sex, you can do drugs, you can do walking, strolling, ice-cream eating, beer drinking, tram riding, art overloading and boating. You can do fine views, coffee, foods of all kinds, listen to bells and buy flowers. Today’s society can do nothing but love the place.

I have been wondering about this as I meander through the streets, this open society, this dream, this place to be. This city of lovers, romance, hen nights and stags, of weekend visits, of lifelong inhabitants, of tramps, of tourism, of locals.

It is the ultimate party place, the ultimate relaxation place, the fanatical art place, the holder of memories, of fun and smiles.

Everyone is happy, everyone is smiling, and everyone is relaxed. The streets are buzzing, the lights are flashing, the bells are ringing and street sweepers are out throughout the evening clearing up broken glass from the revelry.

It is all of this that makes Amsterdam a ‘must go to’ place. What you can’t do is take it away with you, you can’t take its morals ideologies, laws and dreams, but no-one seems to mind.

It is superfluous to ask why people come here, it is obvious? What I would like to know is what do people take home? Does the de-stress extend through ones being, and is a weekend of de-stress enough to get one through the stresses of daily life until the next ‘switch off fix’?

I watched a women walking around the square this afternoon, she had an interesting gait, an interesting face and most of all an interesting purpose for she was there when I returned later in the evening to sit in the square. I wonder who she is, she was certainly invisible, is that what we all become here – invisible?

The world is rife with stress, but I wonder what it is we all do to de-stress normally? We clearly don’t do enough as being ‘off for stress’ is an acceptable and popular event. Some of us have partners who are there for us to see us through the difficult times, the times when the world doesn’t compute and some of us don’t. What is there for the inner soul, the inner being, the depth of the human soul?

Nothing Amsterdam has to offer seems to touch my soul, so what do I do when I am stressed? Were I to embrace everything here I would not be happy, but perhaps we do not seek to be happy, but rather away.

I have walked around today and learnt about the golden era of this city, its rich history and its material structure. There is so much to see, to learn and to do one can literally escape ones mind. There is no need to talk to anyone, worry about anything. Everyone speaks English impeccably and the tourist’s needs are at the fingertips of those that want it. I have enjoyed talking in whatever accent I have felt like, and as I stroll around I have thought of nothing at all as the visual, auditory and olfactory world has pushed all inner thought away. Yet, when I rest I wonder is that de-stress. What do we do when we are at home to de-stress and do we allow those around us to do so, and be with those that need our help to do so.

So, the senses are stimulated automatically, all we have to do is walk out of our hotel rooms into the hubbub of this anonymous life. I suppose a holiday or a weekend break is the reverse of the sensory deprivation tank are they both as effective?

5 Comments:

Blogger Steve said...

BLIMY!

8:06 AM  
Blogger Sarah said...

You can't beat a good long tunnel for sensory deprivation, I was thinking the other day. Amsterdam is one of the very few 'abroad' places on my must-visit list.

8:29 AM  
Anonymous Mukiwa said...

MEDITATE!

9:52 AM  
Blogger Jill and Graham said...

Good stuff you found in Amsterdam!

2:57 PM  
Blogger Adam said...

I love Amsterdam, but I hate much about it that others seem to love. I hate the pissed up Brits ogling whores in windows and smoking blow in cafes most of all. The Rijksmuseum didn't touch your soul? It is such a beautiful town, with wonderful buildings and art. It is in many ways a key cradle of the modern world. If it had better restaurants it'd be paradise.

4:44 PM  

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