“I was seventeen years old and I had fallen in love with a Dutch girl. She lived in Lochem, and we went for a day trip to Amsterdam together. We saw a movie at the Tuschinski theatre and I was pretty impressed. I moved to Amsterdam in 1980. I was living the free hippie lifestyle, and for the first six months I squatted in an empty house. In 1982 I moved here permanently. At first it was an apprehensive time. I was constantly searching for a job and a place to stay, and every few months I had to visit the Aliens Police.
I was a party animal and enjoyed the nightlife of Amsterdam intensely: Paradiso, the Melkweg, Roxy and Mazzo. That was Amsterdam for me. Now I prefer The Concertgebouw. I still enjoy modern music, but don't like the overcrowded arenas anymore. I’m now nuts for Baroque music and love listening to it at the Concertgebouw.
I also like the Amsterdam School style of art. I love looking at it and I look out for it all the time. Buildings like the Scheepsvaart museum and the Bazel; amazing!
I lived in Zaandam for 15 years, but moved back to Amsterdam in 2008. When I moved back, I finally and consciously realised how privileged I was to have built a life in Amsterdam. How fantastic it is to live here. When people ask ''Where do you live?'' it's so cool to be able to respond, ''Amsterdam.''
Amsterdam has made leaps and bounds as regards its reputation for service during the last few years, but people from Amsterdam can be very direct. The English like to sugar-coat their critique. I love going to the Nieuwmarkt district and the Red Light District, the Praal brewery, Ooievaar and the Loosje, for example. A nice mix of locals and tourists. I think I'll stay in Amsterdam forever. The older I get, the more I enjoy the culture this great city has to offer.”