“Welcome to Amsterdam!”, exclaimed our Airbnb host with a broad smile and a sparkle in his eye. We had just walked through the door of his canal home on the southern arc of Prinsengracht, and our host - a tall man with a full head of gray hair and a slender frame disguised by a loose, black silk shirt - seemed overjoyed to see us. We exchanged a bit of small talk, dropped our bags, then he invited me downstairs to sit at his kitchen table. A few minutes later the host sat down across from me and unfolded a giant paper map of Amsterdam. The map was laid flat on the table in front of me, and with a beaming smile and energy of a teenager, the host walked me through everything there was to know about his home city. I mean, everything. I kept thinking this would all be far easier and more useful online, but he exuded such joy and pleasure I went along for the ride. By the end of our trip, having our host so involved in our stay was actually one of the highlights of the experience. Once we got out and explored the city, we went bike riding in Vondelpark, visited the Anne Frank house, Van Gogh museum, and participated in an intimate small boat tour of the canals at night.
All images captured in June, 2016 with a Canon 6D.