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Friday, 29 April 2011

Easter in Amsterdam 5

I think the reasons I was getting so tired is because my scooter is very heavy and getting it in and out of the car takes quite a bit of exertion and to explore Amsterdam means I'm loading and unloading it twice, after my nightmare in Edinburgh, I'm scared of going long distances on my scooter, in case it happens again (I ran out of battery about a mile from the caravan, took me around 2 hours to get back). So I decided on a compromise that being, to head for somewhere on the outskirts of Amsterdam. The route I was taking into Amsterdam with the car meant going via a tunnel according to my TomTom and the tunnel had no pedestrian access, so I had to find a way into Amsterdam suitable for my scooter. Consulting the maps I had I found a way via this bridge.

Entering and exiting Zeeburg CS I kept noticing something that looked suspiciously like a commune, but because before I was in the car I never investigated it and made some potential friends, Lars and Peter.

Now because I'm on my scooter here is a few pictures of their 'commune'.

This is a shot of the campsite from the bridge.

The caravans are actually behind the tents.

On these trips, I always manage to forget something I miss, this time it was a warm coat, the reason being the weather was really warm when I left England and I thought I would not need one, discovered I was wrong on Tuesday, a cold wind blew and the night saw thunder and lightning. So I went looking for a coat. Found a street market, very much like the street markets you see in London with stalls on wheels, that are stowed away when the market is done leaving a big empty street when done. And bought a sort of anorak not what I really wanted as it was not very substantial,  but at 10 Euros whose complaining? I will leave it in the caravan as an emergency coat.

I really like Zeeburg campsite and feel very at home there, but its 'free internet' service is abysmal, they are trying but don't have a clue. I can get a connection by tethering my phone but it is expensive, Vodafone say in their text they send, they will give me 25 MB for £2 and this should be plenty! 25 MB is roughly 8 medium sized photographs after the 25 MB is used up they will then charge me £1 for per MB, this means if I upload 9 photos to this blog, the ninth one, will cost me around £3, who are these people? What makes it worse if you don't use the whole of the allocated 25 MB it is not added to the next days allocation, the MB counter is reset. So you could be in the situation of downloading your emails in the morning consuming 1 MB  and not going online again that day so 1 MB would have cost you £2 these companies do not know the meaning of fairness. The company that owns Vodafone is actually Walmart. I thought the EEC was about harmonising systems, if I use my phone on the internet in England it costs  £1 for 24 hours and as far as I can see the access is not capped. I fail to see why the same scheme could not be used in Europe unless of course Walmart are a bunch of scammers.

Found a cafe called 'East of Eden' with wifi but it was slow, still it enabled me to spend a few happy hours writing this blog. The big benefit of using my scooter instead of my car, meant I allowed myself a couple of beers, not that I was over the limit or even near it, but drinking and driving I will not compromise on.

Set off back to the van and got completely lost, after being given directions found my way back. The concept of exploring with the scooter works,  arrived back plenty of charge left, so decided to go all the way in the next day and had a quiet night in listening to radio 4 on long wave. I would advise anyone touring Europe to buy a long wave radio, there are a few English speaking stations on medium wave, like the BBC World service and Radio America, but they are not the same as radio 4.    

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