Thursday, April 04, 2013

Goodbye Amsterdam

Amsterdam, it's been fun. I wasn't so sure about you at first, but you turned out to be okay.

I left my hotel around 10 AM this morning to embark on my new adventure. Leaving after almost a week in the same place made me nervous that I might forget something important. I only have just enough of each thing, so losing something is a big deal.

Right now, I'm searching for some high quality shampoo. My perfectly measured bottle leaked on my last flight and I'm completely out as of this morning. Recommendations for high quality shampoo abroad are welcome.

Anyway-- I took a bus to the airport. Although I was running a few minutes late, so was the bus. I made it and arrived at the airport fairly smoothly.

A friend mentioned to me that there are tons of items on the McDonalds menu here that they don't recognize. Although it generally goes against my personal policy, I decided to check out the McD's here. It was about $14 for a McChicken meal with fries and a bottle of water. And they charged per package of ketchup or fry sauce. Interestingly, there were tons of things on the menu that were different. The most interesting was a Greek sandwich. It looks like a gyro, but with a giant beef patty in the middle. I tried to get a photo, but the staff told me in a very stern voice that photos are not allowed. Below is the one photo I was able to snap without anyone noticing.

When I left the hotel today, I dropped off my FedEx package with the hotel's front desk. I told them to call me if anything went wrong with my pickup this morning. Sure enough, they called while I was waiting for my flight. The driver was looking for more paperwork or he wouldn't take my package. This really made my mind race. Clearly, I can't leave the airport to go back and get it. What would I do?? After, I explained that the box contains personal items like sweaters that I'm sending back to lighten my backpack, the driver agreed to take it. Whew!! What a relief. Hopefully it will make it all the way to Memphis smoothly.

I'm waiting now for my plane to begin boarding. Honestly, being in an airport makes me nervous. I feel like the airport staff are always under the impression that there are very strict rules at the airport, but they are never quite on the same page about what those rules are. (And the staff always has just a little too much power to mess up your day if they are so inclined.)

Today, I'm heading to a country that doesn't require a visa for Americans, but the staff here really struggled with that idea. It makes me nervous that I could end up stuck sleeping in an airport somewhere. Wasn't there a movie about that already?

Wish me luck today!

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