TEDxAmsterdam’s 6th edition commenced at 5.30am on Friday-morning and went on until just before midnight that same evening. I caught only little of what happened on stage, but was lucky enough to walk in just as Duncan Stutterheim asked the audience to “get up, and feel the energy”. Green laser and loud music turned the theatre into a dance-festival for one minute – an absolute highlight of the day [see it here, from 9,11min onwards]
The rest of my time was spent mostly backstage, covering all four floors of the City Theatre – at 11pm the app that counts my walking minutes signalled ‘535 and counting’. As I was putting on a coat and gloves, I realized this meant I had walked almost 9 hours. All of a sudden the road home -which was to be taken by foot- appeared to be very long.
My phone had died so getting an Uber was impossible. About ten minutes into it, I gave up and started looking for a cab. Waiting by a red light, a guy on a bike came up from behind and said hello. He looked at me and then asked:
“Do you need a ride, maybe? You can hop on the back.”
“Are you serious?”
“Sure, sure. I saw the way you were walking and you have all those bags with you.”
His name was Roel and he lived in Amsterdam East. We were sort-of going in the same direction, but he dropped me off right in front of my door. What a life saver. I asked if I could take his picture.
“Is this really necessary?”
“No, but I like photographing people who do kind things.”
Small gestures, enormous gratitude.
*If you’d like to see TEDxAmsterdam captured in 2:30 min, view it here.
For an exceptionally beautiful piece of music, click here.