Getting off the plan in Amsterdam we couldn’t wait for a hot shower and comfy bed. We didn’t have anything booked but wanted to see if Cocomama had anything available. We also didn’t know how many nights we were going to be there, everything we had planned for the next few months was out the window. Luckily the hostel could book us for the night and we started formulating our next step right away. There is a last minute page on workaway but I highly doubted anyone would take us within the next few days. Usually it is for no less than a week notice. I sent about 20 emails to hosts all over Italy, but mainly focusing in the southern regions like Sardinia, Puglia, Sicily, and Basilicata. I also emailed a few people in the Netherlands in case we didn’t hear back from anyone in Italy. This way we could stay somewhere for a week or so until we got sorted out. It isn’t like we are hurting for money and can’t just stay in hotel but these first few months we are really focused on saving. Also, we are most interested in the cultural exchange part of this trip and the best way to experience that is to live with families and not in hotels.
We didn’t explore much more of Amsterdam for these two days, apart from grocery shopping and out to eat once. We were craving a burger and looked up some popular places and ended up at Lombardo’s. They had gourmet dutch burgers with delicious accompaniments like red wine onions, thick slices of french goat cheese, sautéed mushrooms and much more. I had their play on a philly cheesesteak, but Mikel’s burger was much better in my opinion. This place didn’t serve fries, but the burgers didn’t need them, I think that’s a sign of a good burger joint.
Surprisingly, one of my favorite “attractions” in Amsterdam was the Biblioteek (library). At 7 stories tall, each level has a different theme from philosophy to music, and the top floor is a theater and restaurant. It’s right next to the central station and we went there for a few hours before catching a train, I didn’t want to leave! We had a great lunch on the top floor and the building is surrounded by huge windows with amazing views of the city. My photos aren’t that impressive because of the grey rainy skies, however, I promise this is a must see building while in Amsterdam.
The whole second day was a waiting game, we started getting emails back from Italy, one in specific sounded promising as she said she could take us in a few days, depending on when her friends leave. We knew we had to stay in Amsterdam at least one more night to wait and hear back from the host. We booked a hotel right next to the airport, went grocery shopping, and waited it out. Thankfully this host communicated over email with fast replies (a lot of hosts take 24-72 hours) and she let us know we could come on the 11th of March (4 days away). We booked the cheapest next flight into Italy (making sure the train ride to their city would be cost effective) and made plans to stay in Rome for 3 days.