Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Guarros Take Europe & UK: Day 1

It's been quite a whirlwind the past few weeks.  Last week, specifically was a big deal. We took a serious trip away with out the child.  It was the longest stretch of time we had ever been away.  Luckily Nana Lu & Uncle Ricky came to the rescue. They stayed at our house to keep L on her schedule, going to school and in her house while Mom & Dad left her arse and began to really and seriously cultivate her abandonment issues. It was a fantastic week away (Friday - Saturday), but it was also a hard one.  Between the time difference and not wanting to call TOO much we missed her horribly. The good news was she would at least talk to us on the phone (for seconds).  Very recently she wouldn't get on the phone with anyone. I'm glad she dropped that habit.

Here's our adventure broken up, because lord knows I have too much to say and I took WAY too many pictures.

Day 1: Arrive in Amsterdam in style! C travels. He travels a LOT. Most days it makes me crazy. This particular stretch of time, I was thinking it wasn't so bad.  This trip was brought to us by the very travel that exhausts us.  With all the points from flying and staying at Marriotts a majority of the trip was "free."  Nothing is free, of course, it was paid for with blood, sweat and tears of single parenthood while he is gone.   That and points.  Points for airlines and points for hotels.  Our Amsterdam accommodations (both times) were completely "free." Holl.ER.  Flying to Europe should only be done in business or first class, it turns out.  We're talking bottomless glasses, warm towels, snacks and meals.  Not to mention personal little space that folds out to a bed (a BED) and all the judgey looks you can handle from flight attendants.  We (usually) tend to (almost) get cut off - but it's worth it.  No seats in the bathroom when we travel for leisure.  Step one to a successful trip is to bump up, no question.

Once we got to Amsterdam, we explored as much as our weary selves could after a (way too long but definitely necessary) nap, checked out our hotel and made ourselves at home at our home base - the Club Lounge. Our first hotel, the Renaissance Amsterdam Hotel was where our adventure began.

Another perk of C traveling as much as he does is Club Lounge access. This means (depending on the hotel) usually very long, if not 24 hours, of free stuff. Mostly soda (lukewarm - more on that later), usually ice and sometimes beer, wine & snacks. Appetizers, desserts - good stuff over all.  In our first hotel there was a life line (free wi-fi). It was heaven.

The best part of our vacation was we didn't plan anything. We would strategise at certain points of the day to work out what was next - but along the way enjoy whatever we came upon.  Sometimes it would be at the hotel, sometimes at lunch or at a quick pit stop.

Regrouping & planning in the lounge

Day 1 for example, the guy who checked us into the hotel (awesome hotel - p.s.) told us the best thing to do first is to take a canal tour. Canal tour, we did.

We were one of the first people on the boat and thought we would take advantage and get a seat outside in the back, walking right past the HUGE sign(s) that stated there was "NO Explanation."  The more the front filled up and the back didn't we started to rethink what we thought originally was a real win. We finally READ the sign staring at us - and made our way back to the front. At this point, unfortunately, it was all about riding backwards down the canals. It didn't really matter, either way - it was amazing. Beautiful and we made it work.

During our next planning session, we figured out dinner. Oh glorious dinner at Lucius.  The picture doesn't do it justice - but so began pictures of dinner. I will do better next time, promise (to try).  Ladies and Gentleman... I present you with the sea.

For more photos you can check out day one. More on days 2 and beyond... later!


  1. Amazing sea plater - Gosh should not have read your blog at lunch time because the closest I will get to that is a tuna sandwich :(
    Waiting to hear about London. Apart from warm beverages, anything you were not prepared for?

  2. London - that's day 3 ... but a spoiler alert? London is MASSIVE - I don't think I was prepared for how huge it was!

    And the warm beverages... oh the warm beverages WHY SO WARM, BEVERAGES? WHY?!?!


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