And just like that we’re back on the ship. It was a bit of a rushed way to experience a city, and when your main outlook is to aimlessly wander around, you really are leaving it to chance as to whether it was all worth it. But that’s how we do things.
I’m still undecided whether this was a worthwhile trip. Admittedly the price was pretty cheap, which helps. Two nights on a cruise ship with the ‘day’ (and by day I mean roughly 4 hours) in Amsterdam for £92 (with the extras). All of which came via Groupon. When you put it like that, it’s pretty good value.
Of course, I’m used to walking pretty fast. At my pace we could’ve seen quite a lot of the city, minus the things that take up a lot of time. But I had a baby who occasionally needs feeding and changing and a wife who isn’t used to walking all day. Unlike Isabelle, I can’t put her in a carrier, which is slightly unfortunate. So we took it a little slower. We still managed to see quite a bit of the city, but the main tourist attractions like the Anne Frank museum and the Van Gogh museum were missed. Oh well, there’s always next time.
It’s also very hard not to see a Isabelle as a burden during a trip like this. Mainly because she kind of is. I’m not being mean, I’m just being factual. A trip like this is more difficult with a 4 month old. That’s hardly a bold statement. But you just have to manage your expectations and accept that you can’t do things how you normally would have. But that’s currently life in general. Your life is different with a baby, and that’s just how it is. I think after four months, I’ve come to terms with that.
I also managed to experience what parents feel when you have a baby in a confined public place like a bus. That nervous feeling knowing you have 45 minutes of travel, hoping that she’ll be good and not scream the place down. You basically find yourself counting down the minutes before you know you’re going to be safe. I’m extremely glad to say that we were pretty fortunate.
On the way to Amsterdam she managed to sleepfeed the entire way there. And coming back, despite the rowdy bunch of German guys behind us, she was pretty quiet. Even managing a few laughs amidst the occasional cry. All in all, we got pretty lucky. Not that I’d put all of Isabelle’s temperament down to luck, a lot of what we get with her has been down to effort. Heck, I’ve been trying to help grow a calm baby before she was even born.
But after spending a bit of money on Isabelle; she now has a puzzle, a few outfits and even an aeroplane spoon that makes noises, we’re back in our tiny cabin. I’ll admit, there’s a part of me that wishes we were now heading home. Maybe we overextended ourselves with this trip, and it might have been better to choose fewer places with longer stays, rather than a day in each. But we’re committed now. And tomorrow sees our last night of this trip, in a more relaxed setting, then it’s back home. There’s no way that I regret any of this trip, but I’ve certainly learned a few lessons to help with the next one, and city hopping as much as we have might be something we’ll do less of the next time around.