Measured Extravagance

08 March 2002 - 12:11 a.m.

Well, I can now say that I've been dancing in Amsterdam, even if it was just by myself on the floor of You II, the lesbian disco on Amstel. (Or should that be especially since it was just me, myself and the mirrors?) Problem one: it was too probably early, and there were only a half-dozen people there. Problem two: I wasn't in dressed-to-slay mode. (Not really a problem in that I wasn't looking to pick anyone up, but neither does it inspire the masses to hit the floor.) Problem three: Definitely a clique-dyke feel - not enough data to ascertain whether that's a result of problem one. Problem four: too damn loud to entertain myself eavesdropping.

But hey, now I've been dancing in Amsterdam, and I also was once again reminded that this is not the States where street numbers match up. Which is why 178 Amstel is quite a few blocks east of the Carre Theatre, which is on the 100-odd block but across from the 300-even block.

Other indications I'm in Amsterdam: a middle-aged woman left the ballet tonight wearing her calf-length fur coat - matter-of-factly hopping onto her bike and cycling away. The horrified gasps of some punk English girlies as I passed by them on Waterlooplein with my cone of fries and mayonnaise.

I haven't mentioned the food in detail, have I: Indonesian at Bojo in the Leidesplein and also rijstafel (sort of like dim sum) and columel (sort of like gummies in coconut milk) at Long Pura; a mustard greens, seaweed, wild rice and scallop soup at Lucius; salmon with tagliatelle and a red table wine named after Canaletto (Antoine's sister is an art historian) chez Antoine; and yet another shot of bessenjenever (raspberry-flavored Dutch gin) at Cafe Swartz, where a big brown dog moseyed over to my table and settled down to snooze next to my feet.

Oh, and the requisite pastries from Chinatown. And Belgian gumdrops. Time to head back to the hotel and heat up some tea...

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