Expat Gone Wild: I am no tourist

Expat Gone Wild: I am no tourist

Feb 19, 2012 |  by  |  Art
About the author
Caroline (25) is a writer, an expat enjoying life at its fullest in Amsterdam and a girl born to party. She makes her Friday night plans no later than Monday morning and enjoys drinking verse muntthee just as much as hot-people-watching in the city.

They ride their trashy Dutch bikes like die-hard rickshaw cyclists in India, they know that going Dutch is synonymous for “baby, pay your own bill” and they stalk their naked neighbour in his curtainless flat just like he is stalking them. They are expats gone wild in Amsterdam and I am one of them! Let me share my stories about a foreigner’s life in this glorious town. You’re in La La Land before you know it.

Part 3: The Expat vs. Tourist Battle

There is something I have to admit. Even though I’ve been living in the Netherlands for almost two years, I sometimes catch myself strolling on the bike path like a tourist. It might only take a few seconds until I realize it, but still, it happens. So what, you think? You have no idea; that’s a major issue. In moments like these I feel sorry for myself, to say the least. It basically justifies my Dutch friends doing the ‘You’re such a tourist!’ thing on me once they’ve shown me their amazing sense of orientation in this city or their professional drunken cycling skills.

Clearly, as an international living in Amsterdam you don’t ever want to be mistaken for a clueless tourist. Even though most of us expats started off tourist-like in Amsterdam; wandering around the Red Light District with an ‘oh my god’ face, occupying coffee shops and taking tons of canal pictures because they are A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! We have reached a certain level of expat coolness after living here for a while. Especially when a tourist asks us for directions and we totally know where to guide him to, or when we tell them what night club to go to because the one they are standing in line for sucks.

But above all that, there are a number of essential ‘no can do’s’ we have mastered that justify why we expats don’t fit into the tourist cliché:

No can do, no 1:

Yes, we all love Amsterdam, but no, we would never show it by wearing these. Even if it’s minus 15 degrees outside and our brain was about to freeze.

No can do, no 2:

The Obvious. Our omafiets wins.

No can do, no 3:

Expats don’t wear oversized clogs in public. Maybe I should try these though…

No can do, no 4:

Bachelor parties in the Red Light District and all over town.. Expats might do the same one day, but somewhere nobody knows them.

No can do, no 5:

Many tourists think drugs are falling from the sky in Amsterdam, but expats don’t go that far. Even though they could end up looking like this cute little kitten.

Next time on ‘Expat Gone Wild': How To Pick Up a Dutch Guy

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