One interesting thing I've noticed about Amsterdam as compared to other European cities is the relative absence of American products and stores. I've seen Starbucks, The Gap, Barnes & Nobles or Urban Outfitters or other such stores in London, Athens and Paris, but none in Amsterdam. I didn't realize it at first, but after being surprised after seeing a Gap store in London, I started looking for American stores in Amsterdam, and not finding many. I did catch a glimpse of an American Apparel store on Westerstraat in the Jordaan and a Timberland store near Leidseplein. I don't mind - what's the point in buying something here in euros that I could get at home in dollars? - but I am impressed with Amsterdam's ability to fend off American companies. I can't imagine that such corporation don't want to open up stores in this great city.
There aren't many things I dislike about Amsterdam, but the absence or inaccessiblity of some American products does make me sad. For instance, I can't find maple syrup. I'm sure it's available somewhere, but I haven't found it yet, and so delicious maple syrupy pancakes remain out of my reach at the moment. There is a sugar syrup available in Albert Heijn, but it is not the same at all. I'm not homesick, exactly, but there are some American foods I crave. Boxed macaroni & cheese was high on that list until a friend's parents brought me some when they visited (they are kind kind souls). Paris and London both have more American foods available - London especially. So if you're craving something, you might want to make a field trip over there. It's easier than getting back to the US!