Monday, 30 May 2016

MY WEEK IN PHOTOS - MY NIECE'S 3RD BIRTHDAY PARTY, BEACH FUN & TASTY FOOD!

Share:

Monday, 16 May 2016

MY WEEK IN PHOTOS - AMSTERDAM, THE RAILWAY CHILDREN & VEGAN SPAG BOL!

Share:

Friday, 13 May 2016

VEGAN AMSTERDAM & MY NEW FOUND VIEWS ON PROSTITUTION


If you would like to see a Photo Diary only of my time in Amsterdam check it out here but you'll probably want to read this first...

Amsterdam is AMAZING. Absolutely blooming well amazing. It is one of the prettiest cities I have ever visited and just has such a great vibe about it. The people were so helpful and charming and every interaction with someone there involved a good joke and a giggle - My kind of people! 

We went to a few of the infamous coffee shops and I have to say they were not what I expected. They were super dark and dingy and I didn't enjoy being inside them much especially when you glance around the room and everyone there is so stoned you feel like you're in a zombie apocalypse. Before I went I expected them to be chic, modern establishments but they were quite the opposite and some resembled what I would imagine a victorian heroin den to have looked like. It would probably be more fun to go to these places when it's raining but we were so lucky with the weather while we were there and I just wanted to be in the sunshine! I did end up warming to one coffee shop closer to the end of our break called 'The Bulldog' because it was modern and had some natural light shining in! 

Food in Amsterdam was amazing. I managed to eat like a vegan queen despite the fact we didn't go to any specifically vegetarian/vegan places, which was quite the opposite to my trip to Geneva a few weeks ago (take a look here). We ate out for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day and I got some very interesting dishes like falafel, houmous on rustic bread with salad, a walnut & beetroot salad, Chinese tofu soup and Chinese broccoli and I gobbled down some of Holland's infamous fries one day too. All of the girls are omnivores and they thoroughly enjoyed all their meals, except one, in a place called 'Da Giorgia' in Warmoestraat street. We would NOT recommend this place. The food quality was terrible, my friends were served old prawns and meals that tasted like microwave meals. When of my friends found a shell in her pasta, that didn't have shellfish in it, it had become very clear we had been dining in a complete and utter shithole. When we raised our concerns with the manager he just argued and acted as though we were in the wrong; yet another restaurant for Gordan Ramsey's kitchen nightmares me thinks haha! There was also a cat locked in the cupboard downstairs, and it was screeching it's little head off, so I opened the door and he ran upstairs but they took him and put him back in the cupboard. Who on earth do humans think they are? Humanity hold on to the belief that they're so evolved yet they are still treating animals like slaves every single day and continue to remain completely oblivious to it. 

We did a lot in a short space of time. We went on a lovely boat trip with the cutest couple running it. I was in awe of the women running the tour; she was witty, intelligent and full of character. I would recommend this boat ride because it is laid back, yet informative, as well as being very relaxing because they were so friendly and put everyone at ease. We went for lots of nice meals, to see the 'I am Amsterdam' letters, went shopping, went out for lots of nice drinks & meals and finally we visited the 'Prostitution Museum' and Red light district. 

Before visiting The Netherlands I held the belief that women who were prostitutes were lost souls who possibly had fathers or other male figures in their lives who didn't give them the necessary love they needed and thus lacked self-love, but I had a lot of revelations about prostitution on this holiday. That isn't to say that this may not be the case for some women and I find it heart-breaking to think that it is extremely unlikely they won't find a man they are able to/want to be sexually monogamous with and build a connection in order to feel like a solid team with, because that is a nice feeling, you know? However, my views have changed quite a bit on this topic to be honest. Despite the fact, I still think the bravado fuelled men outside the brothels are disgusting, pathetic and a little gross. I kind of get it a bit more than I did before I went. I didn't find out the prices but let's say these men get charged a hundred euros and I have read that they seldom get passed ten minutes. Therefore, they are spending their hard earned cash (pardon the pun) for ten minutes of pleasure - so who is exploiting who really? If a woman wants to do that and it empowers her (I read in one of the prostitutes confessions that she get aroused by men being turned on by her body ) then good for her! It does still sadden me that some of these women are trafficked and one woman had written 'I have no idea when I will get to see my family again?' :-( It still kind of grosses me out that men WANT to have sex with someone who WOULD NOT agree to do so without a payment involved, but I guess if you just want no strings, easy and emotional free sex then it sort of makes sense. 

My main epiphany when it came to prostitution was that I understand why it is legal and I agree with it being so. Prostitutes are doing an amazing job. Rates of rape and sexual assaults are significantly lower in Amsterdam than the USA (per million of the populace) - if you don't believe me then take a look here. If a rapist/ sexual predator has this range of choice with women that are willing to play the role, and there is no chance of getting in trouble with the law then they will be less likely to go out and target innocent unsuspecting women. Not all, but some. These women make it accessible, and are helping to keep other women safe, and for that reason alone I have a huge respect for them. 

They are the ones that fulfill the needs of men that their previous or present partners don't want to/won't do and if that keeps people happy and safe then good! They are the ones that have to deal with the fuck boys that have watched too much porn and think every girl is into BDSM and getting fucked in the ass hole. They are the one's helping both women and men in lifeless marriages that they're staying in for security in other aspects of their lives, holding on to other illusions in order to feel safe and secure. These girls are doing society a huge favor.

Would I have a boyfriend who goes or has been to a prostitute? Hell no! But do I have a huge respect for these women? Hell yes! If you want to be judgemental and self-righteous about these women then that is internal to you based on your insecurities and perceptions. These women are doing something we would hate (or at least we think we would hate because is it not sexual freedom of some form?). Anyway good on them - If you're fuelled with ego and lack of self-belief then you probably think they're some kind of threat. Live and let live I say. As long as no one is getting harmed in the process do what you like, when you like and how you like! 

I do not envy these girls, as money means nothing to me, and if anything seeing this world close up has made me feel super lucky to have what I have here at home. I have a boyfriend who I happen to have an amazing connection with, who is a best friend and someone I fancy on top of all of that. I genuinely hope that anyone in this profession would get this too, despite their jobs, but again it's down to perception - they may not even want that and that's totally cool too. Ahhhh the Netherlands make you feel so laid back about e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g and it's great!

Now I am back in the UK I am missing Amsterdam so much. I miss my girlies. We have Jacqui who is a kooky, 'edgy' and beautiful soul who makes me laugh wth her witty lines and ditsy comments to follow. My beautiful Georgia who doesn't actually give herself credit for how sweet, kind and beautiful she is on the inside and out! And my lovely Danielle who is a complete quality street; she pretends to be a tough cookie on the outside but really she has a heart full of gold and I'm so glad to have them all as friends. I wish we could all just move to Dam and live on a long boat together! Ha! 

I'm missing the beautiful surroundings and all the fun things to do. This is definitely the start of a love affair between myself and Amsterdam because I rarely say I want to go back to places as I just love seeing new countries. However, this city is super special and I couldn't help but fall in love with its pretty canals, cute winding streets, friendly natives, great food and 'Lasse-faire' approach to life!
Share:

Monday, 9 May 2016

AMSTERDAM | THE NETHERLANDS

Share:
© Vegan Vacationist | All rights reserved.
Blogger Template Crafted by pipdig