How's it going??? I've been so busy, I've not had time to sit at a computer and write anything! The weekend went mostly as planned-- Friday night was dinner at a fantastic restaurant near the North Sea. I can't remember the name of the town...I'll have to ask Dutch (I probably couldn't spell it even if I did remember!) Saturday was "family day" and we watched the nephews play voetball (soccer!!!). The vader-in-law drove us to Leimuiden and showed us his birthplace and told us stories of the German occupation. It is strange to see the war from a different perspective-- it makes it very real when you hear that Dutch's grandfather was placed in an execution line up but managed to bluff his way out of it. It's a family history that I never thought I would experience. Saturday evening was spent in Zaandam with more friends of Dutch. They were super nice! And we had amazing tapas! Manchego cheese with pine nuts, walnuts and garlic oil, bread with aioli, chicken with chorizo, catfish renellos (roasted red pepper stuffed with catfish, bread crumbs and grated manchego) and eggplant stuffed with bread crumbs, tomato, cheese and egg, scrambled eggs with spanish ham, grilled pork tenderloin in an amazing light cream and wine sauce. All washed down and the best sangria in the world!!!!
Sunday was a bit of a change-- we still saw one of Dutch's best buddies but we didn't go to Muiden. We went instead to Arnhem to the Open Air Museum. It's quite a nice place, big by Dutch standards, where you can see many historic monuments that have been moved there from all over the Netherlands. Its rather like seeing a microcosm of the country! There's windmills from all over, as well as a cheese factory, a brewery, a working farm, city gates, tram stations, and bridges. A little bit of everything, all gathered within an easy walk. We ended the day by having dinner at a bar in "Naarden. Naarden is gorgeous! It's tiny, quaint, and very old. It is also a VERY expensive place to live. But at any rate, I had a really good chicken sate with a strange potato salad (indescribable but okay, really) and what was labeled a "salad" but looked more like chopped coleslaw except made with lettuce and cucumbers. Very strange, indeed. The bar was loud, but gezellig . The football game was on and it was an important match-- Ajax vs. Feyenoord. It was a "must win" game for both, or so I'm told. I believe they tied-- if you're interested (which I wasn't).
Today, Dutch and I parted ways. He went to Helmond (hey Buffy fans-- he went to the Hellmouth!!) and I went into Amsterdam with Mum-in-law. We went to see the new exhibit of Caspar David Friedrich at the Hermitage Amsterdam. German romantic landscape paintings-- very nice! We then walked through the Jewish quarter to Rembrandt House. Beautiful etchings-- I never saw Rembrandt like this before! The etchings are better than the paintings! Impressive!! After that, we went to The Jewish Historical Museum. It was quite moving and very beautiful. After a brief lunch of brie cheese, tomatoes and basil on fresh rolls, we ventured to the Van Gogh Museum. I forget how much I LIKE Van Gogh until I see it in person. The books and reprints do not do him justice. His work is textural-- you really need to see it in person to appreciate the beauty.
Now, I'm having a glass of wine and then some Lumpia with the in-laws.
Then, I just might collapse.
All this fun is very tiring. Yes, yes, I know cry you a river. :-P