If your home is in historical Amsterdam, it is likely to be on or near a boat, a bridge or a bicycle. Boats, bridges and bicycles facilitate connection and mobility for residents and visitors.
This is an image of “home sweet home” in historical Amsterdam. A home is a connection to community. In the province of North Holland in the west of the country, this Dutch city is the capital and most populous municipality of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The population is 2,431,000 in the Amsterdam metropolitan area.
This ‘rendez-vous’ on the bicycle-lined bridge, an initially subdued greeting, becomes romantic in the old-village ambiance. Amsterdam’s name and city’s origin is after a dam on the river Amstel. With origins as a small fishing village in the late 12th century, Amsterdam became one of the most important ports in the world during the Dutch Golden Age as the result of its innovative developments in trade.
Two men on the left in the window of the canal-based home preparing lunch on the water. The 17th-century canals of Amsterdam and the 19–20th century Defence Line of Amsterdam are on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
Artful view of the canal from a bench on the bridge provides opportunities to greet neighbors or make new acquaintances.
Benches lend spaces of repose to breathe the clear air in this eco-friendly environment.
Canal cruise tour boat proceeds toward the modern city center.
Find easy parking on the bridge.
Canal-based boat-home, neighbourhood brick homes and boys and girls on benches present a classic cliché of Amsterdam.
Common view of charming carriage rides. These offer an experience to enhance appreciation of this historical old town.
Cyclists transport to and from work, run daily errands and connect with friends.
Gentleman dismounts his bicycle as he reaches his destination. 40 to 70% of Netherlanders choose eco-friendly transport, which facilitates freedom to get around and plentiful and simple parking options.
Colourful bicycles surround a tree in the square as a cycling group enjoys repose and refreshment at a café. The Dutch Cycling Association Fietsersbond monitors the efficacy of bicycling in the country. Amsterdam is one of the most bicycle-friendly large cities in the world. It has 400 km of bike lanes and nearly 40% of all commutes in Amsterdam are by bike. Cycling under the influence of alcohol is an offense – the official limit is a blood alcohol level of 0.5 – same as for driving a car.
Most cyclists don’t wear helmets.
Four-legged passengers frequently accompany their people in clever transport configurations.
While safety is primary, accidents and neophyte cyclists or tourists unfamiliar with the laws of cycling can draw angry shouting and even provoke accidents.
Walking also is a comfortable way to experience the old town. Here, a well-dressed gentleman approaches the uphill grade of the bridge carrying a large bouquet of fresh-cut flowers. Bridges are not only a physical means of connecting one place to another, but also are a metaphor for connection. Social connection is a human need. Boats in Amsterdam provide homes as well as transportation. Bicycles are a significant, eco-friendly mode of transportation. Amsterdam ranked 11th in the world for quality of living in the ‘Mercer 2014 Quality of Living’ rankings. Create your connections and quality of living quotient.
“When you arise in the morning, think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive – to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.” ~ Marcus Aurelius [121 – 180]
“There is a crack in everything… that’s how the light gets in.” ~ Leonard Cohen [1934-2016]
“I’m not sad, I’m grateful for having been touched by the soul of Leonard Cohen.” ~Antonio Meza
So am I.