amsterdam, Creative Living, Culture, food for though, Stories

SO Cards – One of those talks #1

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It all started like this. He shuffled up the cards and suggested I picked one. SO… I did. I read the question. I sighed. Here comes a hard one, was the thought that crossed my mind. I wouldn’t have been able to answer this question, in all honesty, ten years ago. Now I know that it’s important that I do. When we’re sincere and open about our struggles, we help others feel less inadequate and less alone. If not for you, do it for them.

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amsterdam, Culture, Places

Amsterdam Culture Club took us to the Concertgebouw

First time I went to the Concert Gebouw was in 2014. It was a treat from my boss at the time, Riny Reiken from Proeflokaal ‘In de Olofspoort’. We went to watch “Hans and Grietje” which, by the way, is one of my all-time favourite operas. It was a marvellous experience. Besides being my employer, Riny also played the role of a musical tutor in my life. She believed I should pursue a career in singing. I have sung a lot at the “Lied and Klassiek” evenings at the tasting house that this special lady runs and, together, we used to sing a duet from Humperdinck’s opera: “Abends will ich schlafen gehn”. This song moves every part of my soul whenever I hear it.

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A sweet memory from the first time I went to the Concertgebouw and got acquainted with a very wise young boy while waiting for the concert to start.

Now that I have introduced you to my special bond with opera and lyrical singing, you can imagine how enthusiastic I got when the Amsterdam Culture Club invited me to join another of their outings, this time at – just guess – the Royal Concertgebouw.

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Culture, Stories

5 bands from Amsterdam that won’t let you sit still

It is a mystery to me why haven’t I written about my favourite Amsterdam musicians before.

Good news number one: it’s never too late.
Good news number two: it’s not electronic music.
Good news number three: this is all very very danceable. In some cases, freaky-danceable (just invented the term, by the way).

Ah, bands from Amsterdam! Not the good old classics, not the über famous ones. Real bands composed of real people who make real sound and play in real concerts that real people attend. Some of these musicians are folks whose activity I follow closely because I KNOW that whatever they are involved in, it’s bound to be good (or simply put, bound to make me happy). This is how I have seen a couple of these bands a few times already (Furake, Conjunto Papa Upa) and don’t seem to get tired of it. If you’re into dancing like a freak, this is possibly going to be your pool as well. Let’s jump right in.

Oh, also, there’s a giveaway by the end of this article.

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amsterdam, Culture, Places

‘Innenschau’ with the Amsterdam Culture Club

It was quite a while since I’d gone to a theatre show. Receiving an invitation from the  Amsterdam Culture Club to join one of their gatherings felt like getting a message from a bigger force – introduce cavernous voice here – Wake up Anaaaa. Make your way back to the theatreeee. I obeyed. Spent my uni time studying theatre, after all. Can’t be this long away from it.

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amsterdam, Culture, Places

Seventeen​ new places in 2017 | part II

Hey-ho, there we go, (again)!

Yesterday, I have introduced you to the first nine of seventeen discoveries I made during the year of two thousand seventeen in Amsterdam – wow, this just sounded super Jacques Cousteau-y, and I’m not sure if that’s good or bad, but anyway. As I have told you, I am shamelessly embracing the blogger / urban explorer (millennial?) in me and “compiling” stuff for public service. Like a hunter-gatherer of modern times. Here we go: the other eight of the seventeen of 2017.
Picture on header: FC Hyena

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amsterdam, Culture, Personal, Places, Stories

Amsterdam: Take your mom out this Christmas

I have always loved Christmas. I feel it is a time for cosiness and introspection, and so I try to pay special attention to those around me and honour the blessings I receive. It only makes sense to spend Christmas in Amsterdam, for it is here that I feel home.

Some of you might be acquainted with the fact that my mum usually spends Christmas in Amsterdam with me. This year will be an exception. Mum is spending Christmas in the tropics and, oh well, who can blame her? So I will recap some of the things we have done together on Christmasses from previous years so that I both celebrate this lovely lady from whom I got my smile (they say) and hopefully give you some ideas for the following days.

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Culture, Places, Travels

Between the lines of Chiharu Shiota

“Our life is like a journey but we cannot see the final destination” / Chiharu Shiota

I did feel I was searching for the line. You know? Those days in which your inner-world is blurry, and you feel slightly disoriented. Perfect occasion for heading to the museum.

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amsterdam, Culture, food for though, Personal, Places, Stories, Travels

Where The Sheep Sleep

Coming home

Every now and then I am walking around the city – wait, who am I kidding?, I never walk – I am cycling, cycling around the city -, and I get struck by this feeling that we are all so disconnected from each other. Which is ironical given the fact that we are also living crammed to each other and yet emotionally so far apart, always busy, never really paying attention to what’s happening around us. Then I can’t avoid my mind to wander to a place where it all was different, where connecting was the rule and not the exception. Where everyone smiled at each other, where people acknowledge each other’s presence, where interactions with other human beings were easy, simple, and free. This description might sound like a mere utopia to most of us. But the cool thing is that there are places like this in the world: not many, that’s true, but they exist.

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Culture, Personal, Places

I’m still in love with youuu booooy

I came back with no expectations. After one month in London, Oslo, Copenhagen, and last but not the least, Where The Sheep Sleep, my feelings could have changed. Moreover, we went through very difficult times, the last couple of months together. I mean, I’ve always known my feelings but, regarding love, you have to leave some space for things to evolve. It is so easy to get caught up in the routine and stagnate into boredom and nagging, but when you let things breathe and give yourself the chance to look at it from a distance, love might bloom once more. I was pretty cautious when I came back. I didn’t shed a tear of emotion when I landed (but I must admit I smiled from within when I arrived in Central Station). I was home. And my home was as beautiful as I remember it. So I basically started making a mental list of reasons why it is great to be back to this long-lasting case of love in my life, called Amsterdam.

Why is it good to be back in Amsterdam:

(If I was writing for SEO I would have made the sentence above the title for this post, right?)

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Culture, Personal, Places, Stories

Sunday yoga in the park

Wake up to the Sunday morning, hop on your bike, cycle to the park, and feel the smell of the trees around you, listen to the chirping of birds, feel the wind breeze. It’s spring, and we’re at the Oosterpark. It’s 10 a.m. and unlike later on in the afternoon, it is quiet over here, and there’s SPACE. My friend Catarina from All In Yoga is about to start the class. As much as I love dancing the night out, the feeling of starting the day early, and in this fashion, is incomparable.

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