Nippy Goes to the Red Light

Last night, things got a little weird in this NIPYATA!’s world.

Nippy has been enjoying his time in Amsterdam, but last night he commented that he was maybe partying a little ~too~ much. He had visited every hash bar in the city, drank ungodly amounts of Dutch beer, and had made a mockery of himself during Amsterdam Dance Event, a 5-day electronic music festival.

"I little vino and a lot of sex might just do me some good."

As we sipped wine over dinner he told me, “Enough is enough. Tonight we have a classy, cultured night. I am done with these tourist traps and want to experience the history of this city.”

He was a couple of glasses into a 13% ABV bottle, so he wasn’t making much sense. When I asked him what he meant by a “cultured” night, he eventually told me he wanted to go on a walking tour of the oldest part of the city. He had learned that Amsterdam has over 400 years of history and had decided that instead of turning up at a club tonight we were going to go for a nice evening stroll through the De Wallen neighborhood. Surely the tourists that came to Amsterdam wouldn’t be interested in the rich history when there was so much weed to be smoked.

I tried to convince him otherwise. It was a Friday night, and I knew what we were walking into, even if Nippy didn’t know which direction was up after his fifth glass of wine. I told him this neighborhood is actually the worst place to be on the weekends. I pleaded with him to go see a movie instead. He was relentless though in his desire to see the history of the city, and so I finally conceded and we hopped on the bike.

As we cycled closer, I could see Nippy becoming more concerned as he saw more and more people around us. “Where are we going?” he shouted at me from the back of the bike where he was guzzling a new bottle of wine he had made me stop at the grocery store for. “Why are all of these people drunk?”

Then, he saw it. The unmistakable red glow washed over his face, and all of a sudden Nippy knew he was home.

"I'm drunk. And I'm scared."

What Nippy didn’t know was that by visiting the oldest part of the city, he was about to get a first-hand education in the world’s oldest profession. Sex work, entirely legal in the Netherlands, has made this section of Amsterdam its home for over 800 years, and today’s Red Light District continues on the age-old tradition of wild drinking and sexual misadventures. The tiny alleyways that serve as streets are packed with people, and red LED lights illuminate windows with women wearing lingerie smiling and flirting with passersby, hoping to entice someone to buy her services.

We stumbled our way through the twisting streets that were packed with people, doing our best not to fall into the canals that seemed to pop up at the end of each path. The wine was hitting Nippy pretty hard, but he still wanted to go into bars and talk to the beautiful women. H had abandoned any pretense of being cultured as soon as he realized where we were, and had become as stubborn as a mule in his desire to continue drinking.

"If you call that work, then I'm ready for a career change. Sign me up!"

Nippy was too excited by the Erotic Museum to sit still. Unfortunately he was too drunk to go in.

We kept getting turned away from bars because Nippy was too rude to the bouncers, so Nippy thought he might try the Erotic Museum instead. We were laughed away at the door as Nippy tried to convince the ticket seller he was a British aristocrat in a very unconvincing accent.

After being turned away from a museum, Nippy couldn’t take it anymore and felt ashamed of his sinful state. As we continued walking we passed the Oude Kerk, Amsterdam’s oldest building which is also conveniently a church located in the heart of the Red Light District. Since 1213 this building had been offering solace to the sinners, and Nippy was ready to repent, if only he could pull himself away from the draw of the red lights that were just next to the church...

The hardest choice: pleasure on the left, salvation on the right.

Ultimately, Nippy was too drunk for either choice and was turned away at the door from both the church (which wasn’t open) and the sex workers (who didn’t want to waste their time on a drunk piñata head). I suggested we get some food from Febo, a Dutch delight that serves ready-made hot meals, which Nippy agreed to.

When in doubt, greasy food will help you out.

After food, Nippy had had enough. He was ready to go home, light up a joint, and pass out after a night of debauchery. I asked him if he still felt cultured, and he whispered in my ear, “I have a much greater appreciation for the Dutch heritage,” as his eyelids began to grow heavy. I tucked him into his bed, turned off the light, and congratulated myself on a job well done.

If you want to feel cultured, sexy and inebriated, click the green button below, grab a majestic NIPYATA! and let's go make some bad decisions.

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