Blah blah I don’t blog enough anymore blah.
In my defence, I’ve been super stressed out with – oh wait, I can’t talk about that. Or that. Oh for feck’s sake, moooooving on…
One thing I CAN actually tell you about is my most recent adventure on the continent. I have a tendency to bugger off to Europe around this time of year, to get a little city break in before the horrendousness of the West End in May hits. You may also have noticed that these little jaunts tend to take place around about wherever the heck Maxie G is living at the time, which conveniently has been a different European country for the past 3 years running. First we had Vienna, then we had the little house in the south of France, and this year was the turn of Amsterdam. Hurrah!
Now, given the debauched youth that I had, you’d think I’d have been to Amsterdam at least once, but alas, it has so far evaded me. Mainly because Maxie hasn’t lived there before, and I only seem to visit places she lives…
BUT as luck* would have it, Dutch lost his job in France and without a regular income and with a tiny person to feed, Maxie, Baby G and he hightailed it over to the Netherlands and set up camp on the top floor of Dutch’s lovely mum’s house just outside the city via a dozen windmills, and so the scene was set for Ritzi’s latest European adventure.
Amsterdam is pretty damn cool. I wasn’t sure to begin with, as it’s very cool and possibly a little bit too cool for me, but since Maxie was so often sucked into recording studios making voiceovers for French TV (as one does) I was left to my own devices a bit and after a day of wandering, getting lost, confusing coffee shops with ‘coffee shops’ and not quite understanding why there seemed to be not one but THREE Van Gogh museums, I was so totally down with Amsterdam geography you’d think I’d lived there. Well, maybe lived there for about a month, a few years ago, and drank rather a bit since then so I don’t really remember where specific things are but I’ve got the general directions down. Cripes, I digress.
As per, Maxie G was doing a play, cos she’s all actressy and whatnot. A couple of days into our adventure, Maxie and I were sipping beverages (she afternoon tea, me afternoon WINE) in a hotel just outside the museum district, when she was telling me all about the show and the cast, and her director, whose name sounded really fecking annoyingly familiar, but for the life of me I couldn’t place it.
A couple of sips into my second glass of clarity juice, I suddenly had a flashback to mostly hungover directionless days in a rundown garden flat in Peckham, when I (an out of work actress) had lived with my Hippy Housemate (also an out of work actress) amongst other waifs and strays, and occasionally her equally hippy boyfriend (you guessed it… an out of work actor). Said hippy boyfriend also happened to have the same name as the director of Maxie G’s play.
‘Hang on one cotton picking minute,’ I declare (possibly tispy, possibly high – who knows in Amsterdam?) ‘How old is this director?’
‘Hmm, not very old. Late twenties maybe?’
‘Is he very tall?’ I ask, scrolling through my memory banks,
‘No, not really.’ Ah, bugger. Mind you, I spent most of my time horizontal on a couch with showtunes in my ears and Friends on the telly, or passed out on the floor in a mild drunken stupor in those days, so his height may have been an optical illusion.
Since conversation proved inconclusive, instead I demanded Maxie text her director and ask if he knew who I was. His response was instantaneous and freaking mind blowing.
Oh yeah, she used to live with my ex-girlfriend. Who is actually flying in tonight to see the show!
Of all the European cities in all the world, my former Hippy Housemate (now a qualified therapist after locking herself away at Central for the past 2 years – who bloody knew?) landed in mine that evening, and blew into the Melkweg theatre bar like a whirlwind while the show was still on, landing in a heap on a chair in front of me and calling for wine, regaling the tale of her missing suitcase (fecking airlines) and squealing along with me as we caught up on five years’ worth of each other’s lives in the half hour that remained before the show came down.
Maxie and the director joined us soon after, and so followed many hours of theatrical hilarity and luvvie gossip – all of us glossing over the fact that I’m pretty sure I remember the last time I saw the director I may have thrown him out of my house for smoking weed in my kitchen, which is ironic if you think about it long enough – with HH and I planning lunches and evening drinks and general amusement to fill the hours when our creative counterparts would be locked away the other side of the pros arch. WEIRD COINCIDENTAL AWESOMENESS.
Ritzi’s brief guide to Amsterdam
Van Gogh museum – don’t bother while it’s in the Hermitage, it’s rather dull and you feel like you’re in the Tate, which is weird.
Museum of handbags and purses – I KNOW. Yes, it is as awesome as it sounds.
Pancakes – Pannenkoekenhuis Upstairs, Grimburgwal. Best pancakes ever, staircase right out of an Escher painting and a hundred antique teapots hanging from the ceiling.
Coffee/interesting cake options – Abraxas café. Not just because of the Harry Potter reference, honest. However, I would recommend giving said interesting cake options a good few hours and not wolfing down two of them in advance of getting on a plane to the UK. However, it does make the Van Gogh museum a heck of a lot more amusing.
Buskers – Rembrandt Square. I’m assuming the fitty busker who sounded like David Bowie is always there. Otherwise, meh, it looks like the kind of place attractive buskers hang out.
Cheesy butterflies – weird little pastry biscuit things from Hema. I was supposed to bring some back for my office but… well, let’s blame Abraxas for that.
And there you have it. I promise to try and be better at actually blogging, life has been crazy but hopefully it will settle down for a bit and I can breathe again. Fingers fecking crossed!
Much love dahlings,
*Bad luck is still luck