Hello from the Schiphol Airport! Brad here. We made it to our gate and terminal with plenty of time to spare (it's about noon here and we're not flying until 1:25.
Having a great time so far. All in all Amsterdam was a great city... plenty of scenery and atmosphere, friendly people (and English-speaking - bonus), and decent food. We wandered around last night in search of a restaurant, but it seems there are two types of places to eat here - those that are winding down and almost empty by 8pm, and those that are just warming up. We ended up walking past a few of the former before giving up and trying another area. On the way back we went past a nice looking restaurant in the lobby of a Best Western, and hesistate, but then thought "What are we thinking? We can't go to Amsterdam and then eat in a hotel restaurant with a bunch of other tourists..." :)
So we ended up going back to the same spot we were at the night before... not sure how to pronounce it, but it's called "Szmulewicz" (www.szmulewicz.nl). It was a great balance between good food, atmosphere, and affordability... and the best part was that I'm pretty sure we were the only "tourists" there both nights. My rule of thumb is that if the locals are eating there it must be decent. :)
Anyways Leslie just grabbed us a couple of sandwiches so I'll sign off for now. Not sure how regularly we'll be able to keep in touch once we're in France or Italy - I doubt our hotels there will have a public computer with internet like this last one did - but we'll try to hunt down an internet cafe here and there to touch base.
P.S. - I would love to include some photos but
a) we can't find a USB cable to fit the camera (it's an odd-ball size)
b) even if we could, I'm not ready to spend 45 euros on something that would cost me $25 CAD back home. :)
Thanks for reading!