Today is another “red day” in Sweden, which means that it is a holiday. After my experiences of Christmas’ eve and New Year’s eve, I was anticipating another day where everything would be closed. After spending too much time cleaning my flat, I decided to go for a walk in my neighborhood, with very little hope of finding a café that would be open. At first I thought I was right. And just as I was prepared to give up and about to text a friend to see what he was up to, a guy approached me on the street and asked if I wanted coffee! He had seen me looking inside Amsterdam and he was on his way to open the café! I immediately knew that this would be a nice day. I told him that I would give him a bit of time to open up while I’d go for a walk and absorb a bit of the Swedish winter sun!
I had walked by Amsterdam quite a few times and was really looking forward to having coffee there. Amsterdam is in fact a café, an art gallery (Galleri Aguéli) and a music venue! When I first went to Amsterdam, the café was “closed” but I was able to see a nice exhibit of Arabic script. Edi, who owns the place with his girlfriend, remembered my visit and mentioned a French Canadian girl who used to hang out at his café but is now back in Montreal. And this is when it struck me. Amsterdam reminded me of cafés in Montreal! It is a really nice place!
A few minutes after I got my double espresso, two guys walked in. They asked for coffee to go but ended up drinking it at Amsterdam. Turns out that Johann and Marcus are regulars at Amsterdam. They knew the owner, Edison, quite well and very quickly included me in the discussion. This is a small world and Johann was horse riding with my predecessor at work a couple of years ago when she fell down a horse and broke her arm! We spent some time talking about hockey (Sweden won the gold medal against Russia at the World Junior Championship last night – or at 5 am Stockholm time!), Montreal, Swedish winter and the US presidential elections. By then I was done with the double espresso and was drinking a nice cappuccino!
There was no exhibit at the gallery this week but a new one should be coming soon. Meanwhile, in addition to nice coffee, I will go back to Amsterdam to enjoy live music (every Thursday evening) and jazz sessions (every Sunday afternoon). I also look forward to seeing Edi, Johann and Marcus again. Amsterdam really has some of the things I love the most in life: coffee, art and friends!
Café Amsterdam: Blecktornsgränd 9, 118 24 Stockholm