After a three hour delay thanks to a faulty airplane, an act of God in the form of an unpronounceable Icelandic volcano, and a long wait to re-book a flight to Tanzania, Tori an I arrived safely in Amsterdam. Much to our delight... I mean, chagrin, we've been forced to spend the night in a Dutch hostel. Our limited familiarity with the pronunciation of Germanic languages and relative inexperience with international travel made even the journey from Schiphol airport to Amsterdam Centraal Station an odyssey (we encountered, among other things, a siren of a KLM agents wearing too much blue eye shadow, a Charybcis of unintelligible announcements, and a Scylla of over-eager bike-riders).
Nevertheless, Tori's optimism encouraged me to enjoy Amsterdam as much as possible, large piles of garbage and aggressive bikers included (not going to lie--the city was waaaaaaaay dirtier than anticipated). Our arrival precipated no minor stir in the station when we spent approximately 20 minutes working out how to use the ATM (excuse me, cash machine). Among other highly cultural activities, Tori and I took pictures of a WWII monument (we think that's what it was...), stared at the royal palace (currently under construction), and wasted one euro each in a casino (complete with flashing marquee).
You think I'm joking. If I were being serious, I would have mentioned our excursiont to the erotic museum, where we found sketches of questionable female sexuality (by Pablo Picasso and John Lennon, no less.) Tori being the saintly paragon of virtue she is, we ruled against trying some of Amsterdam's more *exotic* substances. Instead, we decided not to substantiate American stereotypes, and simply observe the red light district (as opposed to participating...) by night. I'll leave you, dear reader, to supply the appropriately lurid details. Needless to say, Tori, who needs to take a chill pill, and I, who should probably do the same, plan to go to bed far earlier than the time dictated by our hostel curfew for fear we'll miss our 11:00 AM flight, first to Nairobi, then to Kilimanjaro, and finally to Dar, where we'll meet Teacher Jimmy, our boss for the next four weeks. At the moment, Tori's state of being and emotions can be described as the following: "tired," "nervous," "that's it, Matt, stop asking me questions."
Given Tori's lack of coherency and apparently inability to contribute anything other than her response to the above question to this particular entry, I retire. Here's to a safe flight to Tanzania, a successful meeting with Jimmy, and a blog post which hooked our readers on the indescribable excitement that is our journey. Kwa heri until next time, friends!