It was 2013. I had just quit my hospitality job, and I didn’t have a plan. So I did what many of us do: decided to escape the burden of not knowing what to do with my life by going traveling. I booked an inter-rail ticket which would last for one month. Once it was over I’d see what I’d do. I had never travelled alone in my entire life, at least not more than five days in a row, and to places where I’d always visited friends. Right now I was travelling alone-alone, to countries where I didn’t know a single soul. I had worked enough to maintain myself for a few months without a job so there I went. I started in Italy.
My fashion taste in 2018 is, not only a game of casualty, but an ode to sustainability. None of these clothes were new when I got them. Most of what I wore in 2018 were gifts from people who came up to me and said: “I had this at home, I don’t wear it anymore. It made me think of you so here it is”.
My number one priority once I landed in Amsterdam was: FRIENDS. My fellow Portuguese countrymen kept asking: “What about the cold?”, “What if you can’t find a job?”, “What if the Dutch are nasty?”. Their worries were trifling to me. Weather conditions didn’t matter much, and as for work difficulties or complicated people, I mean, when you’ve survived Portugal during economic scarcity, you’re ready for everything. By then I knew that I could do without my family, without a job for a while, even without a home. The one thing that could make the enterprise of moving countries come to grief was NO FRIENDS.
It’s all in the name: Dance Connects Company. This modern dance company is here to bring together people of all ages by the way of movement and, since connection is my drill, there I went to the Amsterdams Theaterhuis, on a
freezing cold Saturday evening. I knew that Rita, a friend of mine, was dancing with them. I really wanted to finally see her on stage.
The Rijksmuseum is possibly the most important museum in The Netherlands, which stores all the artistic “jewels of the crown’. Think famous Rembrandts and Vermeers, like the renowned Nightwatch or The Milkmaid. This is also the place where you have access to reproductions of ships and V.O.C. artefacts and paintings, which tell the story of the Dutch Golden Ages. There’s much more to explore though; at the Rijksmuseum, you can have an overview of Dutch History through their art.