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5 Jun

You may not be aware of it at the time but when you become an expat you agree to abide by an unwritten rule. There are some variations on this rule depending on what country you come from and where you are going to but the underlying principle stay the same.

“As an expatriate you here by agree to provide the serves of tour guide to your new country of residence for any and all visiting family, friends, friends of friends and friends distant relatives. You will there for be expected to know the location of all the best, hotels, restaurants, bars, clubs, museums, art galleries, historic buildings, tourist spots and (in the case of some visitors) prostitutes and drug dealers.”

I have been subject to this rule on several occasions and its not always easy. Most expats never get around to trying any of the local tourist activities in their new country until someone comes to visit. The first important step that most people forget is to work out what kind of tour visitors will want. It’s no good taking someone to the Anne Frank House when they would rather be sitting in Hash Frank’s Coffee Shop.

In an effort to aid other expats in Holland with this problem Invading Holland Tours has provided the following guide of available tour types. One tour from the main list should be combined with one or two of the optional extras to create the desired result.

Invading Holland Tours Main List

- Smokers Tour:
This is one of the easiest tours to give because your visitors will rapidly become too stoned to do anything else other then search for the nearest snack provider. In this case it is best to find a coffee shop near a Febo to help give their visit a more authentic Dutch feel.

- Drinkers Tour:
This can be the most messy of the tours and even more chaotic if the tour guide becomes drunk as well. You will need a basic knowledge of good bars and clubs in the area but as the drinking continues you will find visitors become less picky and/or conscience. If you find yourself in the Absinthe Bar you know you are in trouble.

- Cultured Tour:
Some of your more sophisticated visitors may wish to visit the many museums and art galleries around Amsterdam but lets be honest, if your visitors are English and in their 20s the chances of this are low. However, if it should happen a small collection of museums can be found in the Museumplein.

Invading Holland Tours Optional Extras

- Prostitute Tour:
Amsterdam is famous for its Red Light District. Some of your visitors may want to simply look around, others may want to see a live show and one or two may go missing for half an hour and come back with a strange rash.

- Canal Tour:
Maybe the best ways to see Amsterdam is via one of the many canal boat tours. Falling in a canal however is the worst ways to see Amsterdam. In either case it is important to avoid drink the water.

- Un-cultured Tour:
Museum visits don’t only have to be for intellectuals in the group. If your visitors are a little more open minded maybe they would like to visit the sex, hash or (if they are into S&M) torture museum.

Disclaimer:
Invading Holland Tours can not be held responsible for any problems, hangovers, canal floods, bicycles accidents, boredom, or body snatcher invasions during your tour.

Comments:

9 Responses to “Invading Holland Tours”

  1. marycub says:

    ha ha the sex museum i remember it well. despite the fact that the bf couldn’t get out of there quick enough. suffice to say the fetish room (avoid if you are easily offended or have heart conditions) put me of my lunch.

    funny as hell though!

    just so you know there is also the poo museum, haven’t been in but one can only imagine!

  2. roxanne says:

    Bicycle accidents? Are you planning on combining the bikes with the drinking portion of the tour? That’s an accident just waiting to happen.

  3. zed says:

    oh tell me about it. anyone who visits brussels wants to go to all the best pubs to taste all the belgian beers (ALL of them ??), eat a typical belgian meal (“oh, but i’m a vegetarian” – “fine, stick to just the frites”) and want to visit brussels and see EVERYTHING.

    now there’s not a lot to see in brussels, although it’s a very interesting city if you, like me, love wandering around aimlessly and thus come across some superb murals (Q has a passion for them), the odd, bizarre-yet-funny statue, etc etc, so all i can say is “come in the summer – it’s full of life”.

    i don’t live in brussels so have shit for brains when taking people out – it’s very much a hit and miss tour – unless you’d like the dinosaur museum ?

  4. Ash says:

    I am printing out this page when I get home from school, and sticking it in a safe place for if (when) I visit Holland!!!

    I might sit out the ‘strange rash hour,’ however, but perhaps get someone who wholly enjoyed the Smoker Tour to participate and view the results from afar.

  5. RM says:

    Why do I get the feeling your expieriences with Canals and drinking Canal water aren’t based entirely off that Simpsons Duff Gardens episode where Lisa becoms the Lizard Queen???

    What you’re talking about works on a smaller scale as well. People who come from interstate to go to university expect ‘locals’ like me to know all the good places. Like you, I don’t :P

    Maybe I should make a list like yours, but it wouldn’t be as …. liberal.

  6. ellen says:

    You have a very entertaining blog. I particularly enjoyed your lift story.

  7. Marycub – I’ve been to the sex museum as well (friends wanted to look) but I did not know about the poo museum. Holland just got a little stranger for me now that I know that.

    Roxanne – That’s the reason for the disclaimer. I don’t want to get sued if someone loses a limb.

    Zed – I used to go to Brussels a lot with my parents. We would just walk around and explore as well. If I went there again now I would not be able to recall any of the places to go. I never new there was a dinosaur museum.

    Ash – I don’t smoke myself (although I have tried it) so I often view the results from afar… but not often far enough to realize just how much you can inhale from passive smoking.

    RM – Well… itÂ’s funny you should say that. Although I have never fallen in a canal myself I have witnessed a friend do so. If you ever get the idea of throwing bricks in a canal while drunk just be aware that it is also a good idea to remember letting go of the brick at the critical moment.

  8. marycub says:

    oops posted that under the sisters name… it’s actually meeeeee.

  9. Ellen – Thanks. If you thought the lift story was strange wait until you see my new post :)

    Marycub – Trying to give your sister a bad name? :p