Thursday, September 10, 2009

People Watching in Amsterdam

I found out on Friday that I had to leave again for Scotland on Tuesday. Giving me only four days notice was pretty crappy on my boss’s part. Unfortunately as the only non family member of this family owned business this is my lot in life. I had no choice but to go.

So here I am typing this post from the Amsterdam international Airport. The official name of this place s is Schi-something, but I can’t remember. Give me a break on that one. I am working on about two hours sleep.

As I am sitting here drinking an espresso and watching the unbelievably diverse mass of humanity pass me by, I am reminded of a Cheers episode. Yes I am reminded of TV at all times, even in Amsterdam, the…Holland…er…the Dutch. These people need to make up their mind.

In this particular episode Woody leaves the bar for a week’s vacation. When he returns everyone in the bar asks him about his exotic destination. Woody replies that he didn’t go. He missed his flight. Of course everyone then asked where he had been for the past week. Woody spent the week at the airport and had the greatest vacation of his life. He met people from all around the world. It was amazing.

Of course nobody I have ever met is quite as simple as Woody. I don’t think anyone would actually do what Woody did in this instance anymore than they would repeat any of his other shenanigans. There is, however, some truth to Woody’s view of the airport. There is really no other place that you can see people from so many walks of life all in one place.

While Woody’s adventure took place at Boston Logan I am going to advise a few other places that might be better for people watching. I think a two of the best might be Paris Charles de Gaulle and where I am sitting right now. I am not sure I have ever seen such diversity as I am seeing here in Holland. This airport in Amsterdam is the gateway to Europe, Asia, and Africa. There are people from all corners of the globe.

I am not typically a people watcher, but when you have two hours to kill without a book to read you resort to other tactics. If you add in the sleep deprivation this becomes quite a fun game. You can imagine all sorts of adventures for your fellow travelers when your mind isn’t functioning properly.

I guess my point is that if you are ever really bored and broke, go down to your local airport and meet some interesting people. Otherwise try not to ever get stuck in a sleep deprived layover in some foreign land. If you do then you might post something as insane as this.


Mike said...

Great post. I have the most interesting conversations with people at the airport. People love to talk and they love to talk about where they are going or where they've been. It's like getting great advice for free...

seashore subjects said...

Sounds like a great idea, but of course you can't get past the check-in without a ticket anymore. Making me feel nostalgic for the "good old days" Hope your trip is a safe one!

Rob said...

LOL, I agree people watching is funny sometimes. The mall is also a good place. I like to do this when I have to go with my wife or daughter. Bad place to people watch is the buffett(Disgusting actually)

Steely Dad said...

I love AmDam (that's the nickname I made up for it). You think the airport is interesting? Try taking a walk through the Red Light District. Pretty much your run-of-the-mill ho-hum neighborhoods! :)

Gunfighter said...

Just don't sit around for too long in German airports. They will suspect yuou of something and arrest you.

surprised mom said...

When I sat in O'Hare Airport waiting for a over two-hour delayed plane for Ireland, my family actually met people we knew. They were travelling to Ireland as well.
Airports are interesting places and I bet they are even more interesting on two hours of sleep.
But, I don't need to go to an airport to people watch. I have two jobs that make that a necessity. And yes, people are very interesting.