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Not Wasting A Minute In the Autumn of 2014 I decided to not go to school, not get a job, and not renew an apartment lease. Crazy? Fun? Scary? Yes, yes and yes. But it's time to take a bite out of the world before it chews me up and spits me out like a bad taste

Riding the rails

BELGIUM | Saturday, 30 August 2014 | Views [215]

Traditional windmills

Traditional windmills

I woke up in time for breakfast today. It was OK, but still free. I found out that the Irishmen and most of the Australians I met were also on their way to Amsterdam at the same time. The Aussies booked a coach while the Irish guys were had an Interrail pass. I’d likely (and did) see them later in the day. I was all packed up and the rain had cleared a little, so I said goodbye and walked off toward the train station a little early.

About 45 minutes later I was on the platform waiting for the hourly train to arrive.  I immediately notice four guys with their luggage strewn about on the platform. My Irish friends had taken a cab from the hostel and arrived at the station just prior. It seems they had lost their group train pass for the entire trip ahead of them. They were frantically searching all of their stuff to find it and the train pulled up behind them. In a Top Gear sort of way I wished them all luck and left them stuck at the platform. I didn’t want to wait for the next train in an hour. In Antwerp I did a train change, but just missed the 5 minute transfer. Not a big deal since a new one comes every hour and the station is huge. It was a great time for lunch.

The next train (one toward Roosendale) was packed and I heard a bunch of people jump on just before it left the station. Turning my head I was confronted by four familiar Irish faces! I made some room for them and talked for a bit on the way to our calling point in Rotterdam. They found the ticket they were looking for earlier and caught the second train in Bruges. Since I missed a train in Antwerp, they caught up. In Rotterdam we parted ways again.  Their ticket was valid for any train while my ticket only worked on the Inter City Direct trains. After a 10 minute wait and about a 30 minute train, I was in Amsterdam Centraal Train Station. My hostel was just a few blocks down the road and across a canal. It was scary easy to find after being in Bruges.

A nice shower and a little bit of relaxation later, I met some American guys in the room. They just flew in to Europe that afternoon. We went for some tapas and they invited me to a Heineken brewery tour they were doing the next day. I signed up for that. It was one of their birthdays, so they were planning a much later night than I was going to have. They bought pub crawl tickets for later in the night. After a birthday beer with them, I needed some rest. On my way back to the hostel I stopped at a Febo for a little more to eat before bed. Febo is a vending machine snack bar/ restaurant place. The snack was pretty enjoyable.

Tags: amsterdam, antwerp, bruges, febo, irish, rotterdam, trains

 

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