Musings

Space Cake

Eating space brownies in Amsterdam has been on my wanderlust since 2011. It’s when, after visiting Amsterdam for the first time, I came back without trying and had been penalized for it by my friends, my friends of friends, my friends’ cats, my neighbors, and my exes. I have had enough of “How could you not try it!!” variations that I put weeds, only weeds, in my Amsterdam itinerary when I visited it again in 2014. My people were counting on me and I couldn’t let them down for the second time. In conclusion, I had to try the space brownies in Amsterdam because of peer pressure. I needed to fulfill the social expectations of myself, other than getting married and breeding.

I did my research. I knew these places are called “coffee shops” and they display the green white license sticker. I was ready! After lunch, we went through the red light area and spotted Baba, one of the best “coffee shop” in Amsterdam. I took a few seconds to compose myself (I didn’t want to behave like an annoying, shallow tourist who came to Amsterdam just to smoke weed; even though it was the exact truth) and went inside, with my backpack and camera dangling on my neck. I tried to read the menu nonchalantly; Espresso Macchiato. Wait, what is this place?! And then I saw it. The glorious space brownies.

We ordered two of it to be shared by four of us. The space brownies tasted like something I would have tried to bake and failed. It was hard, tasteless, but edible. The shop itself was nice and crowded on a Thursday afternoon. It was decorated with Hindu deities, including Lord Ganesha, which made me feel awkward on the first few minutes.

I finished my coffee, which I have ordered just to mask the main reason we came here (I made a lot of quick and stupid decisions that day), and stepped out into the cold winter afternoon. We walked, took some pictures, ate stroopwafels, and walked some more. During all time we felt nothing much, just a little happy buzz. I thought this was it and felt pretty disappointed. It was pretty similar to the time when I tried happy pizza in Cambodia. I could the same feeling after the second glass of wine. I began to regret paying 14 euros for two tasteless space brownies.

The evening got colder. We roamed around the museum quarter and stopped at the outdoor cafe for hot beverages. We sat down with our coffee and hot chocolate. I started to say something in English but stopped midway because I couldn’t continue my sentence. Then my cousin tried to say something but she kept forgetting her words. We found that hilarious.

Oh, so hilarious, that we laughed and laughed until we cried out of laughter.

And then we realized we were high! But too late! Can’t. Stop. Laughing. I was aware that people were watching us and that we looked extremely stupid, but for the love of Ganesha, I couldn’t stop laughing because anything and everything was so freaking funny! It was sort of an out of body experience. You knew you were high but you couldn’t control your feelings nor behave normally.

We then walked back to the train station to go to the Airport to catch our red-eye flight back to Jakarta. The whole walk was another new experience. I felt so light like I was a floating spirit and that I could go through any object. Of course, I didn’t try, I only ate half of the space brownies, I wasn’t that high.

We managed to reach the Airport and pass the immigration without any hiccup. Though, I’m sure the officer knew I was high as I was the only person in the sea of passengers who supported colorful AMSTERDAM beanie with no shame. My cousin told me that it was her first and last time trying space brownies. She didn’t like it because she had paranoia. As for me? Next time, I will bake the space brownies myself, if I need to!

Do you know that smoking weed is an illegal BUT unpunishable offense in Netherland?! Gave you tried space brownies before? How about happy pizza? Would you?

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