Posts Tagged ‘rad readalong’

The plane lands safely in Amsterdam and Hazel, Augie and Ma grab a cab to the hotel. Confirming the American belief that all Europeans are immensely sophisticated, they happen to catch a ride with the world’s most philosophical taxi driver. He goes so far as to say: “Some tourists think Amsterdam is a city of sin, but in truth it is a city of freedom. And in freedom most people find sin.”

Whoa dude! Look, I just wanna get to my hotel okay?
“Life is a hotel. We only get to stay for a short while and the joy the mini-bar brings, is short-lived and over-prized.”
Jeez, okay, sure…

S. Crates drops them off at their hotel, The Filosoof, where all rooms are named after famous philosophers. They get assigned their rooms, Augie in a room named after a philosopher who isn’t Danish and Ma and Hazel in the Søren Kierkegaard room. I have to say I appreciate that Green (or most likely his editor) went through the trouble of finding the letter ø.

That night Augie and Hazel are going to dinner just the two of them. There is a whole bit about Hazel getting ready and what dress she is wearing and who cares.
When Augie comes to pick her up, they do the “OMG you look so beautiful/handsome” that romcoms have taught me is completely natural. Then Hazel ruins it by asking if Augie’s suit is the one he wears to funerals. Hazel you are the worst! Go join Britta in the ruiner’s club.

Augie takes Hazel on a public transportation ride (which is apparently a novelty) and the pair arrive at a nice restaurant where the hostess greets them as Mr. and Mrs. Waters. Clearly she needs her eyes checked because these are kids and kids are not very often married, even in Europe.
Anyway Mr. and Mrs. Waters have champagne for the first time (lol, legal drinking age) and marvel at the cyclists, the canals and the seeds falling from the trees. All in all a nice time. (Can I just say how generic European this description is. People biking, canals, public transport, “under age” drinking. All things I see in American media as distinctly European, but not specific to any place in particular.)

While enjoying the European-ness of the night they again touch on Augie’s sexy suit. It turns out it is not his funeral suit, but instead the one he was to be buried in if he had died. Hazel has a dress for the same purpose, but says she would never wear it on a date. Augie immediately pounces on the word “date” and Hazel basically goes “calm down there cowboy!”.

They eat delicious food and speak of what they believe comes after death. Hazel is halfway between nothing and something, but Augie believes death is not the absolute end. Yup, he is sick. Everything points to it; the argument with his mom, the spontaneity of the trip, the refusal that death is final. I wonder if he dies?

After that cheerful conversation, they find a nice bench to sit and talk on. Eventually Hazel asks about Augie’s dead ex-gf and it turns out that whole situation was horrible. Her brain tumour made her treat Augie like shit, but he says he can never be sure if it was the tumour or if she was just a horrible person in her core.
In the end, Augie lets Hazel know that he is happy to be there with her. Pure and simple.

Did Ma go party in the red light district? Will Hazel and Augie “accidentally” stumble into a coffee shop? When will they bone? Maybe next week!

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