Three weeks ago I started my six week magical tour across seven European countries. My goal is to use magic as way of meeting as many interesting people as I can, explore every city that I visit, and to help cover expenses.
If you missed my previous blogs of my first two weeks in Prague and Berlin, be sure to check those out too.
Amsterdam was one of the places that I was most excited to visit. After getting off the train from Berlin I couldn’t wait to get out to explore. I had heard many great things about this city, and was happy to see that my expectations were lived up to.
All the streets in downtown Amsterdam revolve around the heart of the city. Many of them are separated with beautiful canals connected by arched bridges. Everywhere you look there are smoke shops, coffee shops, sex shops, or a combination of each. The night life throughout the red light district is like something I’ve never seen before. Something tells me, if I visited Amsterdam at 18 years old, my experience here would have been far different.
After scoping out the city, I decided that the best place for me to busk was Dam Square. It’s a big open area where people gather to absorb the culture, watch street performers, or simply pass by. It reminded me of Old Town Square in Prague, only smaller.
Tips in Amsterdam were much better than Prague or Berlin. This was my best opportunity to make as much as possible to help cover my travel expenses. So, I did a lot of busking. Even when performing magic at the bars people were still tipping and buying me beers. It was great!
On my second day performing, I was surprised to meet a family who was also from Ottawa. For just a few minutes, I felt like I was home again!
On my forth day performing I bumped into the first of two magicians I met in Amsterdam. This guy had a similar show to mine, in that he was performing close up magic for smaller crowds. He gave me his contact information, and I’m very disappointed that I lost it before writing this blog. I was enjoying his performance so much that I can’t remember his name. I hope he contacts me soon.
The same day I was stopped by police and asked for identification. I don’t know why they only chose to enforce their laws on street performing on this day. Apparently I had gone over my time. Had I not had my British passport to show them, I’m not sure how the situation would have gone.
By my last day in Amsterdam, I had yet to even leave downtown because I was performing as much as possible and enjoying the bars and pubs. I decided to hop on a train and visit Zandvoort Beach, on the shore of the North Sea. This place is beautiful.
On my final evening, I went for one last beer at a pub called Black Tiger. I’m glad I did, because I ran into a second magician who was from London. He goes by the name of Jspades. We hope to meet up in two weeks when I’m passing through his town.
Below is a video of me performing some card magic at Dam Square for a girl named Holly. She had some great reactions. Enjoy!
My next week will be spent in both Brussels and Paris. I hope to be writing about my adventure again in a about a week’s time. Thanks for reading!