Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Melting Pot

Amsterdam is an interesting destination to meet people because it attracts people from all around the world who want to let loose and do pretty much nothing. Yesterday after I actually did have a busy day seeing the Van Gough Museum and the Anne Frank house, I came back to the hostel and accumulated a diverse group of new friends. What began with a game of pool with a cook from Argentina turned into a group of about 10 people wandering the red light to a little cafe, the Green House. I was with people from Bulgaria, Austria, England, Brazil, Argentina, and Switzerland. It was the first time being completely away from anyone from the US and noone from the country I am actually in. It was a good time, pretty mindless, but enjoyable. What is most interesting to me was how exposing my ''American'' attributes are. The stereotypes are true in many ways and I couldn't help for certain qualities to come out. I also found it humbling that we all met in English to speak, my only language, but only one of several that the others spoke. In the US it's just not a priority. This was the first real opportunity I had to spend an extended period of time speaking with people from many different cultures simaltaneously and I suspect it will certainly not be the last. Very interesting and quite the learning experience.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Lauren!

    I know we only recently met through Meghan Balfrey but I've been following your blog these last couple of days. You mentioned above in your "Melting Pot" post how being the only American is a learning experience. It sounds like you are going to have many more learning experiences to come, the most important ones will be what you learn about yourself. The homesickness thing won't go away but it will become easier to deal with once you get into a rhythm of traveling-you haven't been gone long enough yet. Whenever I go somewhere else that makes me miss home- I call it Raleigh-appreciate week. But it will only make you value all of your new and exciting sights and experiences more because they are so different from what we 'Americans' are used to. Good luck and I have faith that you will meet many wonderful people, gather memories that you will never forget, and find whatever it is that you are looking for, but give it a little more time! And remember, I am soooo jealous!