It is literally a copy paste town. Our entry into amsterdam was idyllic. From beautiful slightly bounding roads into the visage of a formative city. My first glimpse had me at surprise, we were beside a beautiful garden with a quaint pond beside, tall grasses, wild flowers and wilders ducks and storks roamed blissfully, all green, sunny, excellent pleasent weather, this would be the closest resemblance to gokul or vrindavan from previous yug. Mesmerizing, very unlike any other european town so far and a 5 mins walk and bam we are in middle of goa! Wild, crazy, fun, holidayers, merry makers people in all shapes and sizes and cut them out and look up a bit; all 13th to 15th century architecture, some gothic, sone italian some from the the renaissance period.
This town is the best bits of places across the globe and caught in between visages of time. Beautiful old, middle age and now modern architecture, lovely canals, the spirit of las vegas, the spirit of goa a bit of gokul, a bit of paris, and those who have seen more places will see resemblances of those too. Its a queer place. It will cater to everyone's taste and different needs of different times. It is as though some one copy pasted their requirements in various spaces and they just organically gelled. Its a copy paste land of all who bring their bits here. Its main characteristic is only this that amsterdam will mesh in your flavour, its like water, with no flavour of its own, ready to take the shape of vessel it's poured in. Its different.
The oldest building is a 13th century church, almost in the yard of the church starts the famously infamous red light district. Women in all shapes and sizes all scantily dressed, all boldly modelled all fiercely proud and upfront of all they are. All eyes naturally zoomed in, fantasies bloomed, its comic, you dont know who to see, the girls or all men and women looking at them, some slyly, some openly, some with wonder, some with scandal and some too overwhelmed to know what to do with this sudden sight. For a minute i felt bad for the girls, to have to exhibit your body thus, see the lust and bear the slander, who would want this! And such thoughts brimmed till i chanced upon a sign "no photography, respect the ladies please" and i caught a flavour.
English is a funny language, of all the epithets attached to the female gender, lady is the only respectable one. Not girl, not miss, not woman only lady. For the people of amsterdam these are "ladies". I wouldn't particularly find anything slanderous about being an accountant, a teacher, a black smith, some top management person and here not as a prostitute. Its a profession. Thats it. And they are professionals, thats it. Its possible, its real, its amsterdam.
The place has something for everyone, gothic churches, modern art buildings, legalized weed selling coffee shops, red light areas, picturesque canals, the house of anne frank, and even of van gogh, you name it and you shall have it.
The easiest indian adjective or word to describe this place would be "bhel" but that would mean that all ingredients mesh and to a large extent assimilate each other's properties, but thats not the case here. Amsterdam is a crowded place with lots of space for people and buildings to be who and what they are. There is no hiding, no shame, no tops and turns. Bring your baggage, be who you are. Retain your identity and sit well with all else and stand out from else at the same time. Its not gokul, not goa, not any other space you have ever seen. Its a beautiful space where all persons from all walks add their colour, a colour which unlike rangoli and paintings stick to their beholder. Thousands of stories are floating here and not supressed, its in open exhibition, its personal art. No it's not bhel. It's copy paste, you are copy pasted like several others and assimilated into this organic mold which pulls you in and lets you stay out at the same time. It's amsterdam...
P.S. of all the vibrant stories of day and night smart robbies that are widely and wildly told of this place didnt turn out true for me. Well a bit if my heart was stolen, but europe does that you.. And amsterdam does too...