It is humid and filthy. I get up out of bed, and into the street. 5:48am.

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This is the neighborhood trash collection point, across the street from our house. For how dense of a city Amsterdam is, they do a really good job with trash collection, road maintenance, and most public services. I guess that’s what a high income tax rate buys you.

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Our neighbor has a free little library on their front stoop. I’ve seen people stop and take books on many occasions.

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I turn west into Sarphati Park. Immediately to my left, there is a gym and game area with permanent fixtures. This ping pong table does double duty as a bar on Saturday nights.

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The west border of Sarphati Park. Streets will suddenly appear like this, and just as suddenly be completely repaved and open. I noticed a few days ago that the bar just out of frame on the right will put some outside tables in this pit when the bar gets busy.

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I find Albert Cuypstraat more interesting as a lonely, polluted, desolate, dystopian streetscape than it’s more famous daytime turn as a giant street market.

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Why is there a tricycle on the roof?

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I walk west until I hit Ruysdaelkade, the western border of de Pijp. I spent a couple minutes hanging out with this swan. It swam over to me from the far side and paced me for a couple blocks.

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Lots of outdoor peeing opportunities for men. This urinal is suspiciously located directly across the street from the Ruysdaelkade window ladies.

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I turn north to 75 Ruysdaelkade, where I recently learned Piet Mondriaan started the de Stijl art movement.

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This utility box on the street in front of 75 Ruysdaelkade honors Mondriaan, too.

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I start walking back toward my apartment and I see a piece by laser 3.14. I really dig this guy’s work, but this is one of my least favorite of his. I think the person who drew the dick next to this one might agree with me.

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I noticed a plaque on the side of a building with the poem “Avond in de stad (Evening in the City)” by Frederik van Eeden in 1908. I couldn’t find an actual English translation of the poem, but the Google Translate version actually sounds nice.

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Back to Albert Cuypstraat, where the sea birds rule the street.

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One of the best things about walking down Albert Cuypstraat outside of market hours is to see all the painted roll-front doors.

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The best doors are the ones where they paint the products they sell inside. The coacoa butter creme bottle is pretty convincing close up.

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This chalk drawing was really surprising. It was drawn next to the entry of a residential building.

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I walk by this restaurant a couple blocks from my house often, and each time I wonder if their digital sign is intentionally showing a pixelated image. Still can’t figure it out.

 


 

I walk quietly back in the door of the apartment and notice raindrops tapping against the windows. I got back just before a thunderstorm hit and broke open the humidity.