I think I owe you an apology, Amsterdam. You see, I just don’t think things will ever work out between us.
But it’s not you — it’s me.
I made the mistake of trying to get to know you at the wrong time, Amsterdam. I met you for the first time after visiting an old fling (London), being introduced to a new suitor (Paris), and then being unexpectedly swept off my feet by a charming new acquaintance (Bruges). To be honest, I don’t think you ever really stood a chance, Amsterdam.
Yes, I will concede that with your pretty canals and narrow houses, you really are just as attractive as everyone’s always said. But looks aren’t always everything.
For every beautiful canal I strolled down, there was an angry cyclist whizzing by. For every quiet moment I found in a park or down a quiet side street, there was any annoyingly high or drunk tourist around the next corner. You actually stressed me out a little bit, Amsterdam.
From that first night when I visited a coffee shop with some friends and took a stroll through the sad and disturbing Red Light District, I knew in my heart that it just wasn’t meant to be, Amsterdam. I wasn’t looking for weed or peep shows, but that’s all you were offering at first.
It was partially my fault for falling into the tourist traps straight away.
But, even when I ventured beyond them, I just didn’t feel anything with you, Amsterdam.
I spent the next few days giving you chance after chance, trying to get away from your touristy areas and trying to participate in anything I could to make me like you a little bit more. I was looking for that connection; that spark that would help me fall for you. I rented a bike, spent a whole day wandering on foot, went looking for some history at the Anne Frank House, and even took a canal boat cruise. While some of these things were lovely and interesting, we just never “clicked.”
Maybe I was just burnt out. Maybe I was missing other destinations. Maybe I was looking forward to others (like Berlin) a little too much. Maybe it would be best if we just try to give it a go again another time.
For now, though, I’ll take all the blame, Amsterdam. It’s really not you — it’s me.
Perhaps we can still be friends?
Have you ever just not vibed with a city you wanted to like? What do YOU think of Amsterdam?