Monday, May 14, 2012

The worlds biggest party... and garage sale

Queens Day!!
On the way to the hotel in Vondelpark

April 30th is the world's biggest garage sale, and seems like the world's biggest party. All of the Netherlands comes out to celebrate the previous queen's birthday. The current queen decided to keep celebrating her birthday on the same day, so it has become a national holiday... and a big street party. It's a day when anyone can claim a spot on the sidewalk and sell whatever they want. People brought out their old shoes... old clothes, even pastries baked at home. It was the craziest garage sale/street party I've ever seen, and everyone is dressed in orange. But it was soo much fun!

The party outside of our hotel- they had a DJ and BBQ set up

part of the garage sale

The inner part of the city is completely shut down to cars and trams for the day, and the only way to get anywhere is to walk. This was unfortunate for us because over the weekend we stayed at Dan and Stephna's house outside of the inner city, and we had to move to our hotel in the downtown area. We had to walk all the way from their house to our hotel which is usually about a 30 minute walk. Well, since we were carrying our luggage and there were so many people on the streets, it took us two hours to get to the hotel!! We had to stop a few times for me to have a breather, and of course we had to eat lunch. But, luckily the weather was fantastic- sunny and about 75 degrees :) After getting to the hotel we hit the streets and enjoyed all of the craziness. At some point we found Lew and walked around with her until she had to catch her flight back to Munich.

After such a crazy night (the night before- Queens Night- is just as crazy as Queens Day), and a crazy day, the city was pretty much asleep by 8PM. By the time we finished with dinner around 9:30, everything was completely torn down, and people were back in their homes. For the next two days I think the city was nursing a hangover because the bars were empty, and no one was around! It was a really interesting experience and I would LOVE to go back next year for the party! What a fun day!

One of the street spots- throwing eggs at the people behind
the board! This guy got hit in the forehead!

We found some more 0% alcohol beer :)

Goldie Gopher even showed up at the party! Or is that Alvin??

One of the areas with a street party

There are a lot of garbage cans around the city... but this was
the aftermath of the day. Garbage was everywhere.

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