Amsterdam: Sex, Drugs and Bags?

Trying to take a look at what the world says or writes about Amsterdam and the Netherlands in the last weeks, I came across a very interesting (depending on your notion of interesting) article. After all the King’s day related posts, packed with images overflowing with the color orange, there seems to be a gap to fill in the world press. This is the apparent reason why a New Zealand based newspaper, decided to write an article about the museum of…. *trumpets playing* ….. “bags and purses”.

When I first read it I thought “Are they seriously writing about this?”. Then I came to my senses again and remembered that A) the fact that bags and purses are of no interest to me, doesn’t mean that they are that to the rest of the world B) Amsterdam is famous, among all other things, for his high museum density, with some celebrating cheese, some others weed, some others sex, some others tattooes and then some artistic ones (such as the ones usually to be found at Museumplein, the part of the city that you want to be in if you are looking for museums in the original sense of the word)

Briefly moving back to point A, there is in fact one group of people who have always been having great interest in bags and purses. Yes. I know you know of whom I’m talking about. The same group of people that wear high heels, make up, love diamonds and drive men crazy.


Source: -
Ehrm no, I don’t mean transvestites. I mean women. You are so sick! 



On the other hand, regarding the high density of Amsterdam’s museums, I can actually remember how the first museum I stepped foot in since I moved here, was the tattoo museum.

A few things should be clear though, namely that I’m not what you would define as a very cultural person, nor do I have a huge interest in museums. I’ve always hated museums, since my Mom dragged me along during my childhood and I couldn’t help but think “When I’ll be a grown up, I’ll stay away from these boring places where I have to stand in front of something and pretend I’m amazed by it. Also I won’t eat any more salad.”


Me in the Shoemuseum
Me in the Shoe-museum

The tattoo museum itself was sort of a celebration after my getting ink here in Amsterdam. I felt that it was a good way to integrate some “culture” with something I just did with my body. I went there with a friend and came to the conclusion, after paying more or less six euros to see a bunch of pictures and old tattoo instruments, that yes, Amsterdam has a very high density of museums, but can they all be called museums? The answer is no, not from my point of view at least. I become even more convinced when I read in the same article quoted above that one of the “hits” of the bag and purses’ museum is “a bronze clasp dating from 1420, with Gothic design”. This definitely made my day. “I’m sooo seeing this place!” (please add to this statement: girlish American accent, hand gesture, left hand on my hip).

Obviously, I truly hope you know what is meant by sarcasm (just needed to say this just in case you were really wondering, if I’m actually going).

The bottom line of this short rant today is just one: isn’t the press in New Zealand able to find something more spicy, juicy and exciting to write about? Holy crap, Amsterdam is the world capital of Anarchy, chaos and libertine behaviors (according to Fox News or the mega renowned institute of DutchReview), people approach you on the street trying to sell you drugs (according to me, don’t know why my face truly inspires them to dare an approach, that’s bad I’d say), and the only thing they come up with is the museum of bags and purses? That’s a killer.


  1. I hate to tell you this Francesco, but the museum of bags & purses in Amsterdam is actually quite renowned 😉 It is also the biggest museum in its kind (how many other museums of bags&purses would there be in the world? But still..). Although I agree with you that there are more spicy subjects in Amsterdam to write about, especially for foreigners, I do find the choice of this NZ newspaper quite refreshing 🙂

    • Hi Astrid!
      thanks for commenting! Hidden by all my sarcasm there is a great respect for bags and purses!:) especially considering that I have two sisters! Jokes aside, if they wrote about it, I reckon it must be pretty good. Thought it was somehow a funny topic choice!


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