Sunday, October 17, 2010

Europe/ UK/ Ireland Tour: Insolent Dutch Children & Many, Many Postcards to Strangers

When we last saw our fearless heroine in Europe (that would be me, in case you didn't recognize me by the description), she was leaving Frankfurt for one short day in Berlin. We had a little under two hours before my last event in Germany, so Judith and Jeannette from Loewe took me to see some of the sights in Berlin. I'm afraid I fixated on the wrong things, however.

Judith: Look, there's the Armani store!
Jeannette: And Bottega!

me: !!!

Yes, there was a Bugatti dealership (well, technically, I think it was a something-else dealership that had a Bugatti on display). I can tell you that it is approximately 1,000 times hotter in real life than in this photo (which I ganked off the internet, by the way, of the same car, because I hadn't brought my camera that day).

Jeannette and Judith were quite forbearing. They took me to a massive German bookstore, where I bought German books (because books are clearly the easiest, lightest thing to bring back home in your luggage) and also to a store where I bought lebkuchen for my mother (and only ate some of it myself). Then it was a nice event with the Berlin Literature Initiative . . . and onto Amsterdam.

Amsterdam, oh you beautiful creature you. Ask me how much of Amsterdam I got to see. ASK ME.

I had school visits every day of my Dutch visit, no public signings because the books are quite new there (thank you to blog readers who managed to find me anyway!), which meant that I saw a lot of the train system, the school system, and also the inside of a small red rental car that would fit into my carry on luggage. I did manage to see a lot of bicycles -- the Dutch go everywhere on them, and there were thousands -- and a lot of Dutch school children.

Who were insolent.

No, not all of them, I guess. And given that most of them had to be insolent in a second language, you had to give them credit. Normally, when I finish a school talk, it goes like this:

ME: does anyone have any questions or comments?
THEM: how long does it take you to write a book?

But in Amsterdam, it went like this:

ME: does anyone have any questions or comments?
THEM: what is your bank pin code?

Clever little bastards.

Most of them really were great, and spoke embarrassingly good English (embarrassing because I have no Dutch at all) and the Dutch editions of Shiver and Linger are pretty darn gorgeous -- same cover as the U.S., but in heavy paperback with cover flaps. And I also ran across the Dutch edition of LAMENT, much to my surprise.

And I left not one but three postcards in Amsterdam, while going out to dinner with my publishers. The scenes of the crime:

And the post cards:

and number two:

and number three:

Those three were left on bicycle seats and benches. And then there was on last one, that I gave to someone directly at the Amsterdam airport, because I thought they needed it:

Then it was good-bye to Amsterdam, and on to Lithuania. Bye, Amsterdam. I loved your stroopwafels. Sigh.


Keri said...

Ask you where you visited in Amsterdam? >.> This isn't some trick to get me to ask you if you visited the red light district or shops, is it? Whoops, too late. =3

Yes, when I lived in The Netherlands (but not in Amsterdam) I used to cycle to and from school and into the walking street and just load shopping bags into my bike's saddle bags...and when my cousin came to visit the local boys would laugh at him because he would be riding a girl's bike. =D

The postcards are gorgeous and a lucky find for those who do. Definitely something I would do if I felt swept up in travel! Enjoy yourself! ♥

Adrianna said...

Did you go to any of the specialty bars in Amsterdam? How was it? If you didn't....WHY NOT!!!

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...