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16 July 2024
Alan Morris in Teasers bar.

In 2004 my friend Martin was 40 years old and for his birthday he decided he wanted to go to Amsterdam for a long weekend. Originally, six of us should have been going, but this soon became 3, with his friends dropping out because of pressure from wives and girlfriends.

Amsterdam weekend.

One more dropped out on the morning of the trip without letting us know. So, for Martin's 40th birthday, his friends, who had all been ready for a trip, had become Martin and me.

After arriving in Amsterdam and checking in to our hotel, we went for a walk to see what was going on and where we would go later. We wandered around looking at the cafes, bars and restaurants and cruised around the canals on a canal boat. I must say there were a lot more canals than I had imagined before going.

On returning to our hotel that afternoon, Martin bought himself a large joint. A few hours later, I knocked on his hotel room to go out, and we walked to a small restaurant next to one of the larger canals. We ordered, and I noticed whilst eating that Martin had only taken a few mouthfuls of food and had gone as white as a sheet. He returned after a short time, but he suddenly jumped up, ran towards the front of the restaurant and threw up all over the inside of the restaurant's front door. He ran outside and continued to lose the small amount of food he had eaten.

I was surprised we weren't both thrown out. The restaurant cleared up, and after I had finished my meal, Martin returned, paid for the meals and apologised. We then went to a bar next door called Teasers. Martin had one beer before leaving and went back to the hotel to continue throwing up for the rest of the night. I stayed where I was meeting and becoming friends with some people from London before returning to the hotel bar late that night and partying till around 5 am with some people I met there.

The following day, we walked around the different sections of Amsterdam, viewing the Red Light District along Canal Street, walking to Anne Frank's house and going to many of the Plazas. That evening, Martin was still feeling ill and again stayed in the hotel. I returned to Teasers, where I met the people from the previous night and continued to party till the early morning.

On our last day, we had to leave mid-morning to catch a flight but returned for breakfast in Teasers before catching our flight home. I don't think Martin had much of a 40th birthday weekend. On the other hand, I had a great time and made many new friends.

Photos from Amsterdam.