This week Alfie and I left the kids with his parents and took a 4-day trip to Amsterdam. I was pretty worried that with all the canal cruises and bus tours and museum visits and lounging around cafes and restaurants, I'd fall off my newfound walking schedule and never get back. I needn't have worried.
We arrived in Amsterdam on the same day that all of Amsterdam (and probably everyone in the suburbs) showed up at the City Center to cheer the Netherlands national football team, who had just finished second in the World Cup. The whole city was a mass of orange, and all the trams had been cancelled, so we had to walk to our hotel. We spent the rest of the day walking around the city, trying to catch a glimpse of the team, who were parading around the city's canals. Our perseverance paid off -- we saw them just after the rally finished, as they were being driven away in big tour coaches.
On Day 2, we took a tour of the countryside, and spent 4 hours walking around quaint, picturesque villages like these.
On Days 3 and 4, we walked all around Amsterdam, looking at museums and buildings and monuments in squares. You don't really notice how much you've been walking when you're surrounded by beautiful buildings, cafes and canals like these.
Or these. The city center is so small and compact that it felt silly to take a tram, so we just walked everywhere. At the end of the trip Alfie and took stock of our adventures and figured out that we had actually walked about 4 hours each day!
If only I were rich enough to visit 11 different cities for each of the 11 weeks leading up to the walk, training would be no problem whatsoever.