We took advantage of our canal view the night after that beautiful afternoon by having a picnic on the bed in our room. After "dinner in bed" we headed out for the "Red Light District", an area unique to Amsterdam. As we walked we passed a canal side luxury hotel housed in a baroque building beautifully spotlit.
We found ourselves in one of the gay areas of the city. We do not know if those bars, whose character and clientele were chiefly of the leather variety, are always this busy on a Sunday evening, or if the wonderful weather of the day had exacerbated the crowd, but they were packed. The crowd was, in general, more tricked out than their American counterparts. The bars were a sea of uniforms, chaps and studded armbands and harnesses. We passed one, much tamer than the others, filled with older, obviously wealthy men. My partner remarked that they checked your W2 form at this watering hole before you were allowed to enter.
We then came to Amsterdam's Red Light District. Scantily clad women posed behind long windows attempting to entice passersby. I had heard of it, and upon seeing it, it met my expectations. As I was remarking on this to my partner, a man, carrying above him in one had two pizza boxes, came down the street in the opposite direction with an older, touristy looking couple in tow. Gesturing to various points on the street he was telling the couple, in a strong New York accent, "Here we got several places. This one over here, this is chicks with dicks, over here we got sick pussy....". The couple seemed enthralled. I remarked that our tour of the district had just exceeded my expectations.
My expectations were further exceeded when we encountered, upon rounding a corner, a woman, flag aloft, leading a bus tour of people towards the streets lined with loose women behind glass. It took several minutes before we could subdue our laughter and return to our sojourn back to the hotel.