Hup Holland Hup!

July 7, 2010

World Cup 2010 Semifinal Holland versus Uruguay in AmsterdamThe Oranje’s are in the final and nearly all of Amsterdam converged on Museumplein to watch Holland’s 3-2 win over Uruguay.

World Cup 2010 Holland versus Uruguay in Amsterdam at MuseumpleinBeing from a short country, I missed the first goal and so, our party moved to De Balie where we could watch unimpeded, like the true aficionados we are.  Curiously, “our” team was now in the final and “we” kicked three goals.  I suppose that is ok, considering our personal pecking order of teams.  Once one team gets knocked out, you select another.  Once the win was secured, the mobs descended on the streets, stopping cars and generally going mental.  If the World Cup has achieved anything this year, it will be the global proliferation of the vuvuzela. Numerous hangovers, or “katten”, will be crawling the streets, shops, and office buildings as we tend a careful boiling wait until this Sunday.

If Holland wins, it will be the mother of all parties.  Even bigger than Queen’s Day?

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Le Tour de France 2010 Rotterdam Prologue

Le Tour de France 2010 Rotterdam PrologueI wish I could say that the weather was spectacular, that the sun was out and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky.  Well, consider it to be the opposite in Rotterdam on the 2010 prologue stage of Le Tour de France 2010.  Nevertheless, a good time was had by all 450,000 spectators as we watched 198 of the world’s best cyclists race around the 9.8km track in a time trial on a slick and slippery surface.  But, it did little to slow the speeding cyclists as they dodged raindrops and long-barrel camera lenses on their way from Zuidplein in Rotterdam’s south, up over Erasmus Bridge, over and around Willemsbrug, and back down south to the finishing point at Zuiderparkweg.  Times ranged from 10′ flat to 16’20”, the best time belonging to Fabian Cancellara; so fast, in fact that I was unable to get a shot of his blurred sprinting machine as he rushed past my already poised camera.   But, I was able to snap Lance Armstrong, (on his last Tour and winner of all the tours between 1999 and 2005), and Alberto Contador (who won in 2007 and 2009), and so I was happy with that.

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A few scenes from Le Tour de France 2010 Prologue in Rotterdam, The Netherlands…

Lance Armstrong Le Tour de France 2010 Rotterdam Prologue

Lance finished in 10'22", good enough for 4th place...

Alberto Contador Le Tour de France 2010 Rotterdam Prologue

Contador would later come 6th at 10' 27"...

Dream Sequence

June 15, 2010

Satellite Bar, Leidseplein, AmsterdamHis local trouble behind him, Sam entered the bar.  Filled with smoky women and tattooed air, his senses told him something had changed.  He was a man again.  Arms, legs, eyes, ears; they had all returned to him and were now being punished from the assault of the vuvuzelas as they erupted from the flatscreens.  It was Germany versus Australia, and it was sure to be a good fight. Read the rest of this entry »