22 March 2008

a night on the town

last night was our first big night out on the town. scott's boss, jason, is from lake oswego (small world, huh?!) and his wife, tiffany, is from california. i had not met them yet, so when they invited us over to their house to meet their daughter, ava, and then onto drinks and then to dinner, i was thrilled. i was excited to meet jason, but mostly i was looking forward to (hopefully) finding a friend in tiffany. i lucked out... they are both great!!

because scott had yesterday (and monday) off for easter we were able to lounge around the house all day before getting ready. i was hoping to wear heals and to do my hair, but it was (and still is) snowing outside, so flats and my hair pulled back had to do...i still made it work! ;-)

we got to their darling little place, and i immediately wanted to move into the city! ;-) not really, but their place was pretty cute. it was about half the size of ours, but it had a little (very, very, little) fireplace and a small back yard and tons of detail and charm. anyway, jason cracked open a bottle of good champagne and the four of us sat around and laughed about the "shit-show" of a process it was for us to get over here. i liked them both immediately!

their sitter came, ava is three, and off we went to our first destination. it turns out that they live right around the corner from the site of the 1928 olympic statium! very cool. the bar, vakzuid is actually underneath the stadium seats, probably in an area that was formally dressing rooms or a preparation area. either way, artitechturally, it was amazing.... modern with uber trendy people inside.

we were there early on in the evening, but i could tell that this mod, industrial, but warm bar was a major hot spot for locals. it was in zuid amsterdam (south amsterdam), so it was well away from the tourists of the world, which made it an authentically dutch hipster experience. the four of us had a ton of laughs and a few too many beers before we headed to our next spot for dinner.

dinner was at another very dutch spot called gent aan de schinkel. the place was packed...luckily we had reservations. it was nice to be with someone, tiffany, who could speak dutch well enough to order us drinks and appetizers. everyone in amsterdam speaks english, but i'm finding that at places like gent and other out-of-the-way local favorites, speaking only english is not super kosher. i think they like to have hidden spots for non-tourists only and when americans infiltrate them they get a little pissy. just an observation.

regardless, the food was amazing! we decided to go "family style," which i loved because it made jason and tiffany feel like old friends. when the dinners came...two veal dishes, a pheasant, and an ahi tuna dish, we ate for a couple of minutes and then passed to the left. i laugh now just thinking about four aduts sharing a pheasant dish! gent was my first real experience with fine dutch cuisine, and i was surprised at how delicious it was...not too heavy at all.

i can't wait until there is a little more money in the bank account so that we can have more evenings like last night. not that i'm complaining, i thoroughly enjoy preparing and cooking meals at home, setting the table with the linens i stashed in my suitcase, and sitting down at the table with scott (and sela). in the end, i think the thing that made last night so fun was not the stylish bars or the fancy food, but rather it was company that we were able to share it with!

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