Bicycles, bicycles & more bicycles! Pt 2.

The key to the national mode of transport in The Netherlands is not to worry about anyone else – selfish, right? No, sensible and SAFE! My South African mind-set had to make a radical shift if I were to embrace the bicycle culture and survive! Step one is to buy a bicycle and the bestContinue reading “Bicycles, bicycles & more bicycles! Pt 2.”

Bicycles, bicycles & more bicycles! Pt 1.

With a nod to Katie Melua and her hit song in 2008 “Nine million bicycles in Beijing”, the stats have changed somewhat and only a year later in 2009, Beijing with a population of 12 million people, had 13 million bicycles to their credit.   Fast forward to 2018 where The Netherlands registered 23 million bicyclesContinue reading “Bicycles, bicycles & more bicycles! Pt 1.”

Dutch Days – Silly Seasons – Fantastic Festivals! Pt2

Paasdagen 1&2 kicks off the year, the “voor jaar” of the Dutch public holidays, that being Easter and the traditional start of the much anticipated Spring.   By the time that the crocuses have bloomed straight out of the cold winter ground, the daffodils have taken over and begun spreading their glorious bright yellow light intoContinue reading “Dutch Days – Silly Seasons – Fantastic Festivals! Pt2”

Dutch Days – Silly Seasons – Fantastic Festivities! Pt 1.

Public holidays are few and far between in The Netherlands but when they do come around, they use them to their max! Paasdag 1&2 – “Religious” Konings Dag – insane market day Hemelvaartsdag – “Religious” PinksterDag 1&2 – “Religious” KerstDag 1&2 – “Religious” Jaarwisseling – fireworks beyond description Sinterklaas – parade  Northern and southern hemisphereContinue reading “Dutch Days – Silly Seasons – Fantastic Festivities! Pt 1.”

ShoppingS – lost in translation.

Those first few trips to the grocery store will be forever imprinted in my memory… The Dutch speak charmingly of going to do the shoppingS as the direct translation is from boodschappen, hence the plural in English! Every shop stocks everything which reminds me of the trading stores in rural areas of South Africa whereContinue reading “ShoppingS – lost in translation.”

Leaving home to start over, abroad.

Three things make up my personal package of “how to” – 1 – SURRENDER to a giant leap of FAITH 2 – CHOOSE to be happy BEFORE departure 3 – Embrace the ADVENTURE in EVERY detail. Taking the plunge to change countries, continents, hemispheres, cultures, language and lifestyle in one’s 50’s is an adventure onContinue reading “Leaving home to start over, abroad.”

Hockey: history – happiness! Pt2

From the dusty little farming community of Creighton in the Kwa-Zulu Natal Midlands to the big city lights of Johannesburg, back to the Midlands and then on to a brand new life in Europe – what an ADVENTURE this marriage has been! Feeling liberated, adult and adventurous, I left my nursing job in Pietermaritzburg toContinue reading “Hockey: history – happiness! Pt2”

Hockey: history – happiness! Pt1

Hockey is the reason we find ourselves on this Dutch adventure and hockey is where it all began… Meeting the man of my dreams, literally, began as a first year student and avid hockey player when, at my first SAU (South African Universities) hockey tournament in Cape Town, I was fortuitously introduced to one ofContinue reading “Hockey: history – happiness! Pt1”

Dust devils & other Dutch delights.

Leaving South Africa, land of colonial privilege for some of us with the wonderful help of housekeeper/s, I eagerly embraced the opportunity to do my own housework, my own way, or so I thought……(wry smile) Before assuming that ALL white – apologies for the inclusion of race – South Africans are land barons, boasting aContinue reading “Dust devils & other Dutch delights.”

Personal perspective on the “big debate”

How extraordinary that I should have some of my more profound thoughts come to mind while I ride my Old Dutch bicycle along cobbled streets of the flat lands of our new home and, in this instance, even more profound that in this wonderful country that I currently call home, The Netherlands, being one ofContinue reading “Personal perspective on the “big debate””