Posted:   June 26, 2012

With a light blanket covering me my arm was resting on top of Corey’s arm. Behind me were Kris and Colt. The plane left the airport two hours ago and now I was desperately trying to sleep on this large plane. I looked over and saw Corey sleeping with his head on a pillow up against the window. We were heading for a weeklong trip to the Netherlands that I had won. 

There were days back at the old dorm when I’d play on my laptop and just enter different contests. I do remember entering the one for this trip, but never in my life could I fathom winning it. Shortly after coming home, I saw an email from the company. I did open and read it, but I just knew it was some sort of hoax or gimmick to get money from me. Mom even agreed once she took a look at it. I ignored it until receiving a call two days later asking if I wanted to claim my prize. Even then, I was sceptical. After being on the phone for about ten minutes, I realized I had won this trip for four to Amsterdam with spending money added on. Naturally, I called Corey and was so excited he could barely understand me. We joked about who the other two to go with us would be. Corey was great and told Kris that I was asking Scott and Jess to come along. I carried the joke on until helping Corey, Kris and Colt move into our apartment. Yeah, Colt said he couldn’t find a job and moved in one week after they were settled. My guess is he didn’t try very hard but instead had taken two jobs, one at the Athletic Center again and another one at a sporting goods store there. I don’t know why but Corey seemed relieved that Colt had joined him and Kris in the new apartment. It was almost as if he didn’t want to be there alone with Kris, but he never said why so I didn’t question him and I finally gave in and told Kris and Colt that I couldn’t think of anyone else better to go with. We got our heads together and chose to leave the week after the Fourth of July. 

I guess I had fallen asleep and woke with some turbulence. Corey woke as well and saw he had been sleeping for six hours.  

“Bro, you awake?” Kris asked between the seats.

“We are now,” I replied.

“Another hour and we’re there,” Kris said with excitement in his voice.

“Awesome,” Corey stated. He lifted the window cover to see land below and the sun shining brightly. 

An hour or so later, our plane touched the ground. It took us a little time to get off the crowded plane. We exited the plane and were on the ground in the Netherlands.

“Damn, we’re here,” Colt said like he didn’t believe it while I looked at the signs. Seeing they were in English was a relief, but I knew the country was fluent in English, as was most of Europe.

“Hard to believe we’re so fucking far from home,” Kris said. “Bros, this is unreal.”

“Tell me about it,” Corey said with a bag over his shoulder like the rest of us. “We have Matt’s good luck to thank.”

“We know,” Colt said. “I’ve told him at least a hundred times.”

Walking to get our luggage, we were fascinated by the many different languages being spoken. It seemed this was a major hub for many connecting flights throughout the world. We had our passports stamped before grabbing our luggage. Now would be a big test to see how real this trip was since someone was supposed to meet us and take us to our hotel. 

Stepping out with our luggage, we canvassed the many signs. 

“There it is,” Corey said and pointed to a lady holding up ‘Matt Raymond’.

We walked over and said we were the party. While walking behind her, I took stock of all the very Dutch items for sale like cheese, shirts and flowers. We loaded our luggage and carry ons into the van with the weather very nice and mild.

“Say is it true that weed is legal here?” Kris asked as the very first thing to our escort, Gina.

“Yes, it is true. Don’t think the coffee shops are just selling coffee,” Gina said with a thick accent. She asked where we were from so we told her.

“So it’s legal to get a prostitute?” Colt asked.

She laughed, “It is, and you can find one anywhere in the city if you have the money. I see why you guys are here.”

“No, Matt and Corey are gay…” Kris said.

“They have male ones as well, but they should enjoy the city as it is the friendliest in the world for gay people,” Gina said.

“It’s cool if Matt and I walk around holding hands?” Corey asked.

“Very cool. You will see many same sex couples during your stay,” she replied. We continued asking questions and got a few pointers as well. Getting closer, I began seeing the famous canals and the unique architecture of Amsterdam. Before we arrived at the hotel we asked about exchanging money. Gina said the best and easiest way was to do it via ATM’s located in the city. 

We arrived at our hotel and stepped out of the car. The four of us looked around in the center of this European city. “Bros, we’re not in Kansas anymore,” Kris stated.

“True, since I’ve never been to Kansas,” Colt laughed, as we all did, including our escort. She said how much she really loved Colt’s accent before taking us to the front desk to check in. She said goodbye and would see us the following week, along with leaving us with a number in case it was needed. They checked us in with our rooms ready since it was common to head to the hotel after overnight flights. They gave us separate rooms, which was a surprise but a very welcome one as far as I was concerned.

As we were heading to our rooms on the third floor, Kris said looking at his watch, “Is it just 6 o’clock in the morning?”

“No Kris, they are seven hours ahead of us,” I stated.

“You are a total dumbass,” Colt laughed. “So what time is it here?”

“One in the afternoon, dumbass,” Kris said with the elevator stopping on our floor.  

Corey and I went to our room and saw the queen size bed waiting on us. We threw down our bags. We saw a welcoming package in our room with travel books and other assorted goodies. Corey came over and kissed me. “It is really hard to believe we are actually here.”

“It’s like a dream,” I said.

“I just knew you were joking when you called me, but we really had Colt and Kris going.”

“It was kind of cruel since Kris got so upset. I know we won’t be completely alone but I can’t think of two other people I’d rather be here with us than them.”

“Kris has not stopped talking about it. He was worse than a kid waiting on Christmas. Hell he was counting the hours this weekend. Colt and I nearly had to lock him in his room until he shut up.”

WHAM! WHAM! No doubt who that was at our door.

“We’re here to see the plans for the day. Matt, I know your ass has the full schedule set out for us,” Kris said.

“Well… today, I’d say we get acquainted with the city before really doing anything,” I said.

“I wanna smoke some weed for sure,” Colt said with a smile.

“Me too,” Corey said. “When in Amsterdam…”

“You fucking pot heads,” Kris said and laughed. “I bet we have to look far and wide to find them.”

“No doubt we have to,” I said. “My guess is they are down some seedy alley and hard to find.”

“Well let’s get going then. We’re only here ‘til next Tuesday,” Kris said.

Corey and I changed our shirts before we left. I grabbed my camera and we were out of the room. We stopped at the front desk for a map. I took the map and headed out the front door. We made a left out the door on this sunny day.

Crossing a small alley, my nose filled with the pungent smell of marijuana. 

“So much for being hard to find,” Kris said and laughed like we did as well.

We walked ten feet and saw the coffee shop. We were in utter amazement passing it with people smoking the strong smelling cigarette on tables on the wide sidewalks. 

“Damn,” Colt said. “They smoke that shit out on the sidewalk.”

“It’s legal alright,” Kris stated. 

We walked a few more blocks and came to Dam Square. I located a bank and we inserted our ATM cards to get Euros to spend. Our plan was to first spend the money given to me first as part of my winnings. I snapped a few pictures of the impressive buildings and then Kris took a picture of me and Corey with the big Palace in the background. After getting our Euros and taking the first pictures of this city, we continued to walk around among the crowd of people. We headed along a busy street and passed a French fry stand. The smell drew us in, along with our stomachs. We ordered the biggest size and shared the tasty fries while out on the sidewalk. 

“Please tell me these fucked up people don’t eat mayo with fries,” Colt said.

“I think they do,” Corey said. “They eat some really weird shit with fries here.”

We downed the fries, along with sodas, which was an oddity for us. We continued along and were amazed at the number of bikes parked at the Central Station. I snapped a picture of the thousands there. We had seen many bikes so far and knew one day we would have to rent them to tour the city. 

Just as we were observing, we noticed a tour was beginning. The best part was it was free. We didn’t have long to decide since it was just beginning. We jumped in and joined the crowd. Most of them looked to be our age with a few older, since it was entirely a walking tour.

It was a great tour and gave us an overview of things to see and do that were really close to our hotel. At the end of the tour, everyone knew us thanks to Kris and Colt giving some candid comments.  It did entertain the others on the tour as well. Colt was the hit of the tour with his strong accent. We headed back to our hotel with our feet aching.

In our rooms, Corey and I didn’t stay awake very long and were out on top of the bed curled up together. I woke and saw it was 7:15 by the clock in our room. Corey was still sleeping so I quietly rose and went to shower since the idea did sound appealing. I finished and came out in my towel with Corey watching TV.  

“TV sucks here,” Corey commented. “There’s nothing on.”

“Oh well, we don’t watch much as it is.”

“I have been a little more with you gone, but you’re so right. A shower would feel great,” he said. He walked past me and pulled off my towel.

“All you have to do is ask next time,” I said standing there naked.  

Corey slapped my tan ass and continued. It should be tan since the previous weekend at Bishop’s we did frequent the nude beach again. As Corey was showering, Kris called on the phone and said they were ready for a night on the town. 

We were out the door and looking like four college guys ready for the night. Colt had on a team tee shirt while Kris was wearing a plain white tee with Corey and me donning polo shirts. We got in the elevator with Kris hitting ‘1’. The elevator went down and opened. We filed out and looked around.

“What the fuck?” Kris asked before we began laughing, standing in the hall with nothing but guest rooms around. It seemed ‘1’ was the first floor of guest rooms, not the lobby. We caught the elevator down one more story. 

We were walking through the lobby. “There are those crazy Americans,” one blonde haired guy said, with another blonde standing there with him.

We stopped. Kris approached them, “We are, but how did you know?”

“We were on the tour today with you,” he replied.

“Makes sense,” Kris laughed. “Say, we’re heading out on the town if you wanna join us.”

The two blondes looked at each. “Sure, why not?” he said with an accent.

“Five thousand miles away he can meet people,” Colt commented to Corey and me.

They walked over and did appear to be our age. Their names were Fredrik and Jonas. They were from Sweden. Fredrik was a little taller with longer hair than Jonas. As we were exiting the hotel, I saw the two holding hands.

“So what are we doing?” Corey asked with the sun still shining.

“We were going to eat, drink and smoke,” Fredrik said.

“Sounds like a night to us,” Kris said.

We headed out and stopped at a coffee shop just three doors down from our hotel. Now we had seen the town was littered with these places. 

“Bros, we’re virgins at this shit,” Kris said to the two. “Pick us out some really good shit.”

“Okay,” Jonas said. He asked how experienced we were so we said we had smoked but weren’t pros. He picked out some weed for us, with me paying for it. We showed our inexperience and had them roll the joints for us while sitting out on the sidewalk area at a table. 

Once Jonas finished, I lit the joint for Corey and I to take a sample while Kris was doing the same. 

“Fuck, this is some strong shit!” Kris let out and echoed my sentiments as well. My eyes got big as the strong weed went down into my body.

The two Swedes laughed. “I got the weakest they had. You should try ours,” Fredrik said laughing.

“Pussy, give me that shit,” Colt said while I handed my joint off to Corey.

“Holy fuck!” Corey yelled.

“Strong, huh?” Kris asked.

“Man, this is good shit right though but strong,” Corey said blowing out the smoke.

We found out our new friends were our age, with Jonas being the youngest at 19. They were in what they called university as well. We were smoking the strong stuff and relaxing while others passed along the sidewalk.   

I spoke up, “So how long have you two been together?”

“Jonas and I have been together 3 years now,” Fredrik said.

“Wow,” Kris said. “So being gay is no big deal in Sweden?”

“No, not really,” Fredrik said as he took another hit.

“It is in America,” Corey stated. “Matt and I have been together almost 2 years.”

“Colt, how long have you been with Kris?” Jonas asked.

“Dude, get real. We’re just bi and not lovers,” Colt replied.

“Yeah, I won the trip and decided to let them come along,” I said and laughed.

“How fun. First time in Holland?” Fredrik asked.

“First time in Europe,” Kris said. “It is kick ass so far.”

“Holland is the fucking best, but someday come to Sweden. It is very beautiful,” Fredrik said. “You can’t smoke this shit legally though.”

The four of us didn’t finish our joints, but I had some really cool pictures of us smoking. We put out the joints and put them in our pockets for later. I was floating like a butterfly after only a few hits. Kris stood and about fell over. 

“Rookie,” Fredrik said. “So are we hungry now?”

“Let us walk around a little while,” Colt said. “I’m buzzing like a motherfucker.”

“That’s why we smoke this fucking great shit,” Jonas commented. “By the time you leave, you will get used to it.”

“So, how long are y’all here?” Kris asked.

“Until Sunday,” Fredrik replied. “By then, I wanna speak your American. We love your accents.”

“We love yours, too,” I said with Corey holding me.

We walked around for a while. It was nice holding hands with Corey and having no one give it a second look or thought. I needed him to hold my hand since I was still buzzing. We found a place to eat coming down off the high. It was great being able to order beer or whatever we wanted to drink while eating. Our Swedish friends found it funny that we couldn’t be served until we were 21 in the US. The food was just okay but the beer was nice and cold. I grabbed some pictures of us drinking and got the waiter to snap one of all of us. 

Finished with the meal, the two began to smoke cigs. We commented on how none of our close buddies smoked. They laughed and said it was quite common where they lived, especially to warm you up on the cold winter days. 

“Matt and Corey, tomorrow night Jonas and I go to a gay bar if you want to come along. I warn you that it is naked night,” Fredrik said.

“Count me in,” Kris said quickly before I could answer.

“You’re not gay,” Fredrik commented, finishing his smoke.

“This boy would rather show his ass than eat,” Colt said.

“Bro, you better not say shit. You’re naked as much as I am,” Kris said.

“We’ll go,” Corey said. “It sounds like fun.”

“I warn you that it is very cruisy. Bunch of guys hitting on you for sex,” Jonas said.

“I’ll just show ‘em this,” Colt said and flexed his arm.

“You are some well built guys and you are hot. I look forward to it if you want to go,” Jonas said.

“We might,” I said. “We can see what it’s like. Hell, last weekend we were at the nude beach all the time.”

“But…,” Colt said. “No one was hitting on us either. I guess we can go and see just how gay it is.”

“It is very gay, but fun,” Fredrik said. “We went last year and had a very good time.”

“We will, but I’m telling you right now we were going to the Red Light District,” Kris said. “I wanna see some pussy.”

“It is something to see, but you won’t see any pussy unless you pay for it,” Jonas said. 

“How much?” Kris asked.

“Well… I don’t know, but I heard a private fuck is expensive. They do have live sex shows there too,” Fredrik stated.

“Let’s go now,” Colt said. 

“It is far from here,” Jonas said. “We will take you but it is a long walk.”

“Okay, we can go later on,” Kris said.

We left with the sky just turning dark at after 10. We walked around and stopped in a bar for another beer before calling it a night. We said goodbye to our new friends and went to our rooms. We didn’t talk but for just a second with all of us tired. However I wasn’t so tired that didn’t enjoy a piece of Corey’s hot ass. 

I woke numerous times during the night with my biological clock not yet adjusted to this crazy time zone. Seeing light outside, I got up and logged on to my laptop. I emailed Mom and told her I had made it and about my day, along with a few pictures, though none of us drinking and smoking. Corey woke early for him at about 8:30. We dressed and debated on whether we should call Kris and Colt. 

Our debate was answered when they called us at 9 and were ready to begin our day. While having breakfast, I lined out our day and wanted to use the free passes we were given. They got us into some museums, on the bus/tram system and a canal ride. 

Since the tram passed in front of our hotel, it was easy to get on. As soon as it pulled up, we got inside. The tram didn’t move. “The four guys who got on, I need to see you.”

My eyes darted around and knew the guy was talking about us. We left our seats with all eyes on us as we walked to the front. I was so embarrassed and could have left the tram right then. We handed him our passes. 

“You start by entering up front or in the rear, not in the middle,” he stated.

“Sorry, we didn’t know,” Kris said.

We walked back and knew everyone was staring at us. 

“How the fuck were we supposed to know that shit?” Colt said.

“I don’t know, but I’m embarrassed,” Corey replied.

“Me too,” I said.

We sat quietly and got off near the first museum. We walked around to the entrance where we showed our cards and got in.

“Thank goodness this was included,” Kris said. “What the fuck? We’re at an art museum.”

“Yeah, how boring is this shit gonna be?” Colt commented.

“Just wait at the front then,” I said strongly. “I was hoping you might enjoy it. I want to see the painting that otherwise we would never ever see.”

“Okay then,” Kris said. “Let’s follow the curator. We might actually learn something.”

We headed into the museum with Corey by my side. I was so amazed, while Kris and Colt were not. We made it to one big painting where I stood and admired the craftsmanship. 

“How much longer until this is over with?” Kris asked.

I pointed, “Two more rooms. You can wait for us out there.”

“Let’s go then,” Colt said and turned to say something I didn’t hear to Kris.

“You can lead them to the water but you can’t make ‘em drink,” Corey commented after they were out of sight.

“I know. So how do like it?” I asked.

“It is interesting knowing how old and valuable they are. I have heard of Rembrandt,” Corey replied.

We left the large painting where I found what I was looking for. Three paintings by the artist my freshman paper was about. I was amazed at their beauty and detail. “Nice huh?” I said to Corey.

“Well the color is nice and not drab,” Corey replied.

We saw a very famous painting which was last and exited to the gift shop. There I bought a small book of the paintings I saw. We left out and found Kris and Colt sitting and waiting. 

“Finally,” Kris said.

“I’m sorry, but where else can you see such great work?” I said.

“Maybe at a flea market,” Colt laughed. “Corey, what did you really think?”

“It was okay. Having Matt tell me who they were helped. I guess a little culture won’t kill me,” Corey replied.

“I take it going to the Van Gogh is out of the question,” I said.

“You and Corey can go but I’m not. I’ve seen enough old shit to last the day,” Kris said.

“Since we’re here Matt, let’s go. It is a good ways from our hotel,” Corey said.

“We’ll just find something to do,” Colt said and glared at Kris.

We walked and saw a very long queue to enter the next museum. Next to it was a big plaza where Kris and Colt could entertain themselves. Corey and I debated on whether to wait until someone said if we had the card we could skirt the line.  

Corey and I made a quick trip but I did see all the famous paintings. Corey actually knew two of them, which amazed me. I could have stayed longer if not for the big crowd and the fact Kris and Colt were waiting on us. I did buy a big poster while I was there and took it with me. 

We found Kris and Colt with their shirts off getting some sun. While there I got lots of pictures with the big “Amsterdam” sign, with Corey taking off his shirt. It was a great picture of three studs hanging on the sign.

“Did you enjoy it?” Kris asked, coming down off the sign but he was very sarcastic.

“I did,” I said. “What did y’all do?”

“Not much, but we got some great people watching in. Where did all these folks come from?” Colt asked but kept looking at Kris.

“I guess they’re on vacation just like us,” Corey replied.

“No doubt,” Kris said. “I’m hungry now. Let’s go over to Hard Rock and grab a bite and have a big cold one.”

“No you’re not. You just wanna drink,” Colt said.

“Sounds great to me,” Corey said and grabbed my hand.

“Y’all don’t have a worry in the world here. We’ve seen a bunch of gay couples around. Now I see why Matt was excited to come here,” Colt said.

“You were just as excited, asshole,” Kris said.

“I know I was, but I was just messing with them. Stay off my ass!” Colt said.

“Off your ass, huh?” Kris said getting angry. “You were picking at me earlier.”

“Yeah, all you’ve done is fucking bitch!” Colt said.

“Guys!” I said. “Before this gets ugly, stop it!”

“If he will,” Colt said.

“See if I fuck you tonight,” Kris said.

Whoa,” Corey said under his breath. 

“Yeah see if you do, motherfucker!” Colt said with his face red.

“Fucking stop this shit right now!” I screamed. I knew I was garnering unwanted attention but my friends all of a sudden seemed to want to fight.

Kris walked away in a huff while Colt walked in the other direction before we could even start heading to grab something to eat. I caught up with Kris and grabbed him by the arm while Corey went to Colt.

“Do you mind filling me in on what the problem is here?”

“Bro, I wish I knew. Like when y’all were gone, he was picking at me.”

“You always pick at each other. Why is it any different now?”

Kris took a seat in the grass while I could see Corey and Colt talking a short distance away. “You still know me far too well. Colt fucked me last night, basically made great love to me. It was really comparable to our night but with even more passion. Afterwards we were lying together and it felt so good. I asked him and he agreed that we should give it a trial run of being… boyfriends while we were here.  You know see what it is like and shit. Then today, I’ve trying to hold his hand and shit but he keeps pushing me away.”

“Kris, honestly, after Corey and I make love, I’ll agree to about anything he wants. You feel such emotion and love afterwards. Colt slept on it and may not be ready to make the biggest jump of yours and his lives.”

Kris sat, quietly looking across the park, “Damn, why do you always have to be right?”

Before I could answer, Colt came walking up. “Kris, can we talk in private?”

“Yeah,” Kris said but sounded dejected.

Corey came back over and put his arm around me. “Colt just ain’t ready. He said he may never be ready to be with Kris like I’m with you. I’m really shocked they would even consider being lovers.”

“Me too,” I said.


I really hope you enjoyed the first chapter of this short summer series.  Again, I appreciated all your emails and comments at the end of 'Sophomore'.   At one time, I had decided to end it but have found the energy to continue now.  

COMMENT below if you would like!!!
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