This week was fairly uneventful. I had my first lesson with Sven on Monday, and it went well. My goal is to become more XTREME! Which is something people have been telling me for years (i.e. my ideas are good but I just need to exaggerate them). I'm working on it. I hope to bring some Xtreme-ness from my life into my musics. Other than that, I had nothing to do all week but practice. So that's pretty much all I did. I've actually gotten more practicing done in the last few weeks than I did all summer, and really all last term at UBC too.....at least that's what it feels like. It's both really nice and really strange to have time to practice, since usually I'm trying to squeeze it in around everything else. It certainly helps that I'm not loaded down with courses! Bah to the Bachelors! I've also met a violinist from Sudbury, and I'm going to be playing in her final examination in December - George Crumb's Black Angels. It will be very challenging, but I think it's a really good piece to know, and also to learn in school when you have the luxury of rehearsing it for 2 1/2 months. Because in the real world, that would probably never happen. They'd probably just be like, 'can you play Black Angels next week?'. So yeah.
Yesterday Aida and Nathalie, two girls I went to UBC with, came into town on their way to Paris. Nathalie's in Austria right now visiting family, and Aida is living in Enshende doing her Masters. So I met up with them yesterday, and we wandered around Amsterdam. Went for super sketchy all you can eat Chinese food in Chinatown (on the Zeedijk), went to the red light district and the Amsterdam Erotic Museum, and then ended up sitting in a McDonalds for I think around an hour. Or maybe two. We were really just looking for someplace to sit after all our walking, and Amsterdam's not huge on the public benches. I have to say I don't really walk a lot what with riding my bike everywhere, so I never really noticed the dearth of public benches until yesterday. The other annoying thing is that you have to pay to go to the bathroom pretty much everywhere in the Centrum. Pretty much the only place I've been to where you don't have to pay is the Conservatory - even at the public library next door you have to pay! It's pretty ridiculous, even if it is only 20-50 cents. It's a washroom, in a public building - I can see McDonalds doing it cause they're corporate asses, but the public library???? So strange. Anyways I'm just hanging out at school until my Dutch lesson starts in 15 minutes. I got here early to finish my homework, but it didn't take me as long as I thought. Which was nice.