07.20.15 | Amsterdam
Amsterdam is beautiful and thrilling! I love the water; I love the streets; I love the houses; I love the craziness of the bikes, walkers, mopeds, trams, and cars. I have seen no other city that looks like this. The appearance of the street pavement and cobblestones may be similar to streets in Prague, Italy, or some other old European walking city, but the houses are like nowhere else. They are characterized as tall and skinny in shape and are painted in deep color or off-white. Some have brick façades and complementary colored window frames. If you tilt your head, you can see that some of the townhouses are also tilting. I thought this probably had to do with the large amount of water in the area causing instability of the soil. But according to two blogs I found, that is not the case. The houses were apparently designed to tilt forward so that large items could be drawn up the front of the house by homemade cranes without hitting the façade. Houses were designed to be skinny because property taxes were based off of the building’s frontage. This made for skinny staircases!