Bitterballen - Creative Commons Flickr User davidkosmos

Awesome things we have in Amsterdam

No, the Amsterdammers don’t have Fondue, Mountains nor Heidi. But they have some other awesome things we should get inspired with. Have you ever heard of Bitterballen?

REAL Bike lanes

Come on Switzerland, you can do better. Of course, it will be impossible to beat Amsterdam. But still you can improve. Almost every street has it’s bike lane,  mostly separate from the road. Just great. If you plan to travel around the Netherlands you should try the Fiets Route Planner. A great tool which lets you find the best routes (race, nature, chill).

Canals

These a great for rowing, ice-skating and borrels (apéros). This might be a bit tricky to build in Lausanne, but you have that awesome lake. I guest the lake wins, I would definitively not go for a swim in those canals. Even if princess Maxima (!!!) did it.

Free Ferries

FREE public transportation, this is awesome! Cross the IJ by day and night without a penny. You will find them just behind the central train station – More information here. Are there any place in Switzerland where you can find free public transportation? I can’t think of any.

The Museumkart

One card to rule them all. Visit virtually any museum in the Netherlands for free. Yeah, actually you’ll have to pay 55 euros first. Beat that Switzerland and your Federalism. Get yours on their horrible website. If you are living here it is worth it. After 2 month we already “amortized” them.

Songwaiter

The jukebox for iphone! Via you iphone you can choose the music that should be played in the bar. This is a great idea even if old jukeboxes look so much better than your new iphone C. But with the jukebox, you can’t do this.

Bakfiets

A wheelbarrow for you child, actually for your 6 children. Only possible in this flat land. Try riding down le “petit chène” in Lausanne with this. This is a Bakfiets

Bitterballen

Most awesome food ever invented by humanity! Yeah, at least by the Dutch. They are usually not so much of big chefs you know… But if you come to the Netherlands, you have to try this. Fried, deeeeep fried… stuff. No idea what they put inside, but it’s served with mustard. Yummy.

There are also thing that should stay in the Netherlands like Broodbeleg for example

How to find a multilingual job in Amsterdam

This weekend I’ve attended the Expatica Job Fair in Amsterdam. Yep, I’m a expat and I’m looking for a new challenge! So these are the kind of events where you might want to go to get these extra little tips which might help you land THE job.

But you came for tip to help you, and here they are. But first, you might also want to have a look at my previous post “How to find a Digital Creative Job in Amsterdam”. There are plenty of uselful links.

First tip

Learn Dutch, ha! Even if everyone speaks English, for a lot of jobs they need Dutch speakers… I’ve seen job opening where the recruiters where looking for people who’d master 2 languages and Dutch. If you need help with this? Then start by reading this post.

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Creative Commons Flickr user TexasEagle

How to learn Dutch in 3 months

Hell yeah, I’m sure it is possible! And this post will explain you my personal method. I’ve never done this before so it’s my first attempt. One thing you must know is I already speak French, German, English and a little bit of Portuguese. German and English are a huge asset to learn Dutch. So many word are exactly the same or really close.

Edit: I’ve added a couple of new tips on this post 

My first “How to learn Portuguese in 1 month” experience

It happened when I travelled to Brazil, the only word I knew when I arrived in Campos Sales was Obrigado (thank you). But then being 24h/24h confronted to a language you don’t understand forces you to learn. And quickly! After a month I almost understood everything (simple stuff). I was always carrying a tiny dictionary with me, and then asking to people to show me the words I didn’t understand. The good thing was that no one was speaking any other language.

As I’m not yet in the Netherlands I have to find an other way to get this “immersive experience”. Here is my plan:

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English or French? No! a multilingual mix

Baguette outside / Rostbeef inside
Baguette outside / Rostbeef inside*

[en] A few ago I launched this blog with the initial post in which I was talking about English as being the main and unique language of this website. I never was really 100% sure about this decision, and then I met Stephanie Booth. She’s bilingual and writes in both English and French. She convinced me not to choose either one or the other. Pourquoi pas écrire dans les 2 langues? Why not using them both? Depending on my mood or maybe the complexity of the subject (my English is far from being perfect).

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