Sunday, September 14, 2014

8/23/14 Day 219 Return to Amsterdam for Mysteryland

We arrive to Amsterdam with 1 day to spare before Mysteryland on Saturday we drop off our BlaBlaCar passengers and head to the center. We are lucky enough to get a last minute response from Mike who is a total sweetheart and lives just near the outer ring road. The rain is pouring furiously and it is not until the early evening that we even make it out of the flat. Upon arrival it has been raining all day and with a skeptical look accompanied by a sigh he regrets to inform us that the odds are it will be raining tomorrow, over and over again I tell him to hush those thoughts and then the sun will come :-) We spend our time zigging through the coffeeshop lined streets, and zagging through the red-light lamps after nightfall. The next morning we are up bright and early to head to the street market for poffertjes and pineapple (if you bring a whole pineapple they will fill it with Piña Colada at Mysteryland! (While supplies last). Armed with our pineapples and ready for a day of festival we dress up in panda and head for Hooffdorp. Taking twisting detours and extra loops here and there we finally see signage leading us to the parking, one more detour from here and we loop around the back where security is blocking off the residential streets and swoop ourselves right into a VIP-close parking spot for free! We saunter up to the front gate and a short while later we find ourselves in another world, in complete awe and wonder of all of the decorations and installments, the stages! Best of all it is an incredibly green and forward thinking festival. My favorite technique of the day is an offer of one token for every 10 drink cups and bottles turned in. With tokens cost 20€ for 6 tokens and a full beer for just one token this was a great deal for us. All you have to do is pick up cups as you wander through the festival because they are absolutely everywhere and you get free drinks! Winning! We aim for the pineapple paradise immediately for our Piña Colada treat, but as we do, make many wrong turns and are consistently distracted and lost amongst the glitz and glammer of ID&T's gem of a festival. By the time we arrive smiles plastered on and fruit in hand there is nothing but a tropical disaster, there are dozens of pineapples laying around, and no booze left! We laugh it off because we knew it would happen, but we were so close, we even saw piña colada filled pineapples pass us on the way in, just minutes behind, blast! Back to wandering we go, the use of silk for the flags and for the Q-Dance stage is genius, the way the material flexes and flutters in the sunlight and wind brings it to life with the most animation possible. The view from atop the pyramid feels too good to be true, and then the real cherry on top is the bungee jumpers launching themselves from the top the height of the cranes above the pyramid, now that's a view, 70€ is a bit steep for us however.  We spend our day drinking free beers and refueling on fruit smoothies with our free tokens. Of the few sets we actually got around to remembering to attend we made it to Kaskade's, one of my very favorite artists he has stayed loyal to his roots and has fantastic priorities both on and off of the stage. The music he played was very European, with a much heavier techno sound, he knows his audience for sure. We worked our way all the way up to the front bar, and as he began to play eyes I looked around and saw what I instantly knew were 2 Americans. As the set continued on we met almost a dozen more Americans, I instantly could see that California style, and sure enough 4 or 5 of them were, complete with gloves in tow.  These ended up being the only Americans, and a high percentage of the non Dutch in attendance that we saw the entire day! Loved his set and the American fan club was pretty special. The whole festival way surpassed our expectations, fantastic decorations, imaginative stages, a green focus oh and the music was pretty phenomenal as well. 

Back in Amsterdam among the bikes

Amsterdam graffiti artist 
Rainbow over the EYE film institute 
Rainbow tail over the multi story bike parking garage
I just can't understand why people feel the need to feed pigeons, and actually let them stand on their arms, they are disease carrying pests
The red light district 

Poffertjes, the right way from a cast iron grill

Pouring down rain as we pull up to Haarlemmermeer
All those stages though
Such a confusing setup, we got lost all day long
Favorite green festival maneuver 

Wish tree
Free piña colada
Or not so much

Q-Dance stage
Phenomenal stage design with flattering fluttering fabrics

Bungee jump over the top of the pyramid

Bouncy house church stage

Bubble stage and the back of the main stage

Waterfall stage
The mud pit surrounding mainstage due to the morning spell of rain
My favorite stage, surrounded by tents to tantalize the senses and infused with great vibes

Didgeridoo and harmonic singing session
Paint guns

Kaskade's magical set

Saying goodnight to the pyramid 
Q-Dance by sunset

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