Alphen aan den Rijn

Leaving The Netherlands

Waiting for the bus on the corner of our street in Alphen, NL

Waiting for the bus on the corner of our street in Alphen, NL

Although we really intended on living in the Netherlands for at least a year Matt and I decided to head home after only 6 months (for him) and 3 months (for me). My visitors visa was coming to an end and after 6 months his work visa was yet to be seen.

The message from our landlords when we arrived at our apartment in Alphen.

The message from our landlords when we arrived at our apartment in Alphen.

With our rental agreement coming to an end too and no guarantee when that elusive work visa was coming we decided that heading to the next place was best.

Our message to our landlords upon our departure from Alphen.

Our message to our landlords upon our departure from Alphen.

So on that cold January day we packed up all our possessions (again) and headed to the bus stop on the corner of our street in Alphen aan den Rijn for the first part of our trip towards home.

We enjoyed the Netherlands and the people we met there (Hi Marjolein, Christian and Menno)! We hope that we will all stay in touch for years to come. I enjoyed the country especially for its openness, tolerance and mission to being green and clean.

I loved the windmills, canals, stroopwafels (my waist could have done without those though), and mass transit. I wish I would have seen the tulips in bloom (arrived too late for that) but maybe one day we’ll vacation there again and catch that.

I found this great video to end this Netherlands portion of the blog so you have a great idea of the attitude of the people there. Very friendly, fun people. Until we meet again! 🙂

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Categories: Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

Snowy Day In Alphen Aan Den Rijn, Netherlands

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!

After leaving Florida and heading to the Netherlands I was looking forward to some winter weather and in early January we got some. We went to bed with flurries and woke up to a winter wonderland so, of course, Matt and I had to go out and explore especially because this was his first real winter. Here are some pictures from that day.

Do you see the cat?

Do you see the cat?

I bet you do now! 🙂

Our neighbor's cat was intrigued with this white floaty stuff!

Our neighbor’s cat was intrigued with this white floaty stuff!

No school day for these kids...

No snow day for the kids at this school…

The view through our little Christmas tree...

The view through our little Christmas tree…

New mode of transportation...the sled!

New mode of transportation…the sled!

The school where the kids came from...

Where are the kids? It’s SNOWING!!

Snowball fight!!!

Snowball fight!!!

I was impressed with the teachers at this school. These kids get to play outside in the school yard every day but this day because it was snowing, they came out earlier and were brought out to the playground behind our building to have a snowball fight!

I call this one...snowfall on plant thing! :-)

I call this one…snowfall on plant thing! 🙂

So now after seeing how fearless the children were in dealing with the snow…Matt and I ventured out on our walk in the winter wonderland too!

Canals are starting to freeze...yes those are duck footprints!

Canals are starting to freeze…yes those are duck footprints!

And then we found out where the ducks went…the other side wasn’t quite as frozen…YET!

A bit of unfrozen canal for the birdies!

A bit of unfrozen canal for the birdies!

Pretty winter canal scene

Pretty winter canal scene

Matt is ready to experience a walk in the snow!

Matt is ready to experience a walk in the snow!

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This it the park where I used to see my little cat friend…this cold day he wasn’t there! Smart kitty! 🙂

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Get ready for this one…I call this photo ‘Snow on rock wall’…pretty clever, ehh?

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I guess because the town is fairly easy to get around in they felt the need to add some confusion…hey, it worked!

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‘Snow on…I don’t know what this is…but there’s snow on it’!

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I really liked these condos and the park that was a part of it!

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Snow and red condos!

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This little guy seemed so lonely there…but I thought it was pretty.

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I couldn’t decide which picture I liked best so you got them both.

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These guys seem determined to wait it out right there…on the ice!

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They hardly seemed bothered by the cold!

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These swans and ducks found one of the rare places where the water wasn’t frozen!

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Ducks on ice!

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Bridge over frozen waters…

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Nice homes on the park…

Bridge in Europapark!

Bridge in Europapark!

Can you hear the snowy silence?

Can you hear the snowy silence?

More sleds as transport...this is what they use when they can't ride their bikes because of the snow.

More sleds as transport…this is what they use when they can’t ride their bikes because of the snow.

A cow sign in the middle of town???

A cow sign in the middle of town???

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Well lookie there…a cow…

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The rest of the herd…we walked right by them and they barely looked at us. Must be used to the foot traffic on that little trail.

More snow and glad to be in the warm apartment.

More snow and glad to be back in the warm apartment.

Parents picking up their kids from school with sleds rather than the usual bikes.

Parents picking up their kids from school with sleds rather than the usual bikes.

It's coming down again!

It’s coming down again!

Categories: Alphen aan den Rijn, Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands, Netherlands, Video Tours | 4 Comments

Out And About In Alphen With My New Camera

Dutch windmill, Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands

Dutch windmill, Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands

Well Santa brought me a really nice digital camera for Christmas and it has so many different settings on it that I HAD to just take off on my bike for a photo tour of Alphen aan den Rijn. So here I would like to share with you all the best pictures from that first day of camera exploring! Some came out really good and others could be better but again I really didn’t know what I was doing with it yet. 🙂

Bicyclists taking advantage of the beautiful day!

Bicyclists taking advantage of the beautiful day!

Whenever there’s a sunny day in Alphen you’ll see die-hard bicyclists all geared up with smiles on their faces.

Windmills and Bicyclists!

Windmills and Bicyclists!

Keep in mind that this was in December and despite the outfits these guys are wearing the wind was blowing hard and it was cold!

Modern Dutch windmills up close and personal

Modern Dutch windmills up close and personal

These windmills could be seen from our apartment. They were just down the road from us and could be seen over the roofs of the buildings if the angle was right.

Windmills peering from behind the buildings!

Windmills peering from behind the buildings!

When I first got to Alphen I went on a hunt to find them because you could see them and then you would turn a corner and they would mysteriously disappear from site. Needless to say I finally found them. 🙂

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Landscape picture of a pretty little pond I found.

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Another pretty shot!

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Bike/Walking trail through the fields!

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A nice place to rest among nature!

This is the only picture this guy would let me have of his face!

This is the only picture this guy would let me have of his face!

The rest of the pictures were like this or worse...

The rest of the pictures were like this or worse…but I personally like this shot!

More of the trail...

More of the trail…

Look I discovered I can even take panorama shots too!!

A nice panorama shot of the field trail.

A nice panorama shot of the field trail.

Church in town in Alphen...

Church in town in Alphen…

On the way to the windmill I passed a nice church and this little park in a neighborhood that I liked…

A small park in a neighborhood I liked in Alphen...

A small park in a neighborhood I liked in Alphen…

The windmill below is a working windmill but now it’s used as a museum (most are…or people use them as their house) and there’s also a popular bakery on premises.

Another traditional Dutch windmill...

Another traditional Dutch windmill…

Going back towards the center of Alphen I crossed the bridge over the canal below…

One of the canals going into downtown Alphen

One of the canals going into downtown Alphen

Some residents of the above canal...

Some residents of the above canal…

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Another little village church just across the canal bridge…

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Panorama of the bridge and canal

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I liked the way the sunset was hitting this weather vane…

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One of the side streets going into Alphen downtown square….

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The Castellum in Alphen downtown square…

The Castellum in this picture is a cafe and movie theater as well as a place where plays are put on.

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Another church in the Alphen downtown square…

There are so many little churches across the country but apparently very few Dutch actually use them. They do look pretty though. Have no fear because there is still a McDonald’s and numerous coffee shops to attend instead! 🙂

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Sunset on the canal in Alphen downtown…

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Sun setting on this pretty Dutch building!

At this point the sun was setting and I had been gone for about 4 hours so I figured it was time to go home and make some dinner! 🙂

Categories: Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands | 5 Comments

Impressions of Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands – Part 2

Windmill, Alphen aan den Rijn, Holland

Windmill, Alphen aan den Rijn, Holland

Yes, I’ve warned you about the windmill photos…more are coming!

Windmill, circa 1898, Alphen aan den Rijn, Holland

Windmill, circa 1898, Alphen aan den Rijn, Holland

What I find amazing is that this windmill has been around since 1898 and it’s still working!! Now it’s a museum as many are plus there’s a bread store on site as well which is popular with locals. There were two young kids this day that were trying to sell everyone sticks that they found. It was quite cute actually.

Church in Alphen aan den Rijn, Holland

Church in Alphen aan den Rijn, Holland

Crossing one of the many canals in Alphen going to the center of town. Nice church in the background.

I love cows!

I love cows!

This is outside a restaurant in Alphen (one of the very few…it’s a small town) and it’s a wine bar/restuarant. This cow is quite the attraction! I had to pet him! I wanted to go there for my birthday but it was closed on Sundays. Then it snowed and…well then we left Holland!

Petting the cow!

Petting the cow!

Now this little kitty cat was my really close friend in Alphen. I came across him going to the grocery store the first time I ventured out and just called to him and he came running!

My little kitty friend!

My little kitty friend!

All you had to do was whistle at him and he would come running and meowing the whole way then you couldn’t pet or love him enough!

Giving some loving to my kitty friend.

Giving some loving to my kitty friend.

I know he lived in the area close by because he was in the same area every time I saw him but boy was he a lovable cat. I really miss him!

Always with the butt in the face! What's up with that?

Always with the butt in the face! What’s up with that?

Holland is a very cat friendly place more so than dogs. There were cats everywhere inside and outside. They were all very friendly and lovable too which says a lot for the people of Holland in my humble opinion!

Matt makes a new kitty friend in Alphen

Matt makes a new kitty friend in Alphen

Matt made a new fuzzy friend just walking about Alphen and we didn’t even know this kitty!

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I had to add this one because…well my name is in there! The purple flowers in the picture are actually known as Veronica’s (which I’ve never actually seen in person) but the actual plant in the planter is not!

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Church in the downtown center of Alphen on the way to the coffee cafe!

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Matt is happy to have his cafe latte and to be inside nice and warm!

001Barista cafe, Cafe Latte, Alphen aan den Rijn! Very nice indeed!

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Impressions of Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands – Part 1

My first official real stroopwafel!

My first official real stroopwafel, Alphen aan den Rijn

I am so far behind in my travel writings that I’ve decided to do a bunch of short blogs with pictures in order to give you an impression of the different places we’ve been in the last 6+ months. So here we go! Out and about in Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands.

Cafe Latte from Delifrance, Alphen center!

Cafe Latte from Delifrance, Alphen center!

My usual visit to coffee shops while traveling led me to this Delifrance in Alphen center. Very nice coffee and the little sugar cookies that came with it were very good too!

A foggy morning in Alphen!

A foggy morning in Alphen out our living room window!

It wasn’t uncommon to wake up to fog outside our apartment. It gave it a really nice, dreamy quality to the neighborhood!

I still can't tell you exactly what this was supposed to be...but it was right near our grocery store.

I still can’t tell you exactly what this was supposed to be…but it was right near our grocery store.

Above could be a deer? An anteater? A strange morphing creature? I don’t know but whatever it was there was a crossing sign there too but I never saw anything that looked like that. 🙂

Stroopwafels and tea, our daily ritual for the time in NL!

Stroopwafels and tea, our daily ritual for the time in NL!

I think I probably (well…okay definitely) packed on some extra pounds with the stroopwafel ritual in the morning here but they were sooooo good! 🙂

Beautiful view of the last of the autumn leaves in town center.

Beautiful view of the last of the autumn leaves in town center.

I just really liked this picture with the last of the autumn leaves hanging on to the trees. A few weeks later we got some really good snow too.

One of the many canals in Alphen!

One of the many canals in Alphen!

This is a really tiny canal compared to most of them in the Netherlands but this was my first day roaming around town seeing the sites.

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Sinterklaas, Zwarte Pieter, and Christmas in the Netherlands

Sinterklaas and Zwarte Pieten

Sinterklaas and Zwarte Pieten

I know it’s New Year and past Christmas but I’ve been really bad with my travel blogging so we’re going to go back a couple of weeks to Christmas and you’re all going to like it! So there!

Well, where do I begin? First of all, here in the Netherlands they still celebrate Christmas on December 25th like the rest of the Christian world but they also celebrate what is known as ‘Packet Evening’ which is a children’s party basically. On the evening of December 5th Sinterklaas and his Zwarte Pieten (‘Black Peter’) come and leave something for the kids.

Now Sinterklaas is a really big thing and his arrival here in the Netherlands (they also celebrate it in Belgium, Luxembourg, some parts of Germany, and a few other Dutch colonies) is met with much fanfare. Children eagerly await the first glimpse of him and his helpers, Zwarte Pieten, when he arrives during the second week of November. Unlike Santa Claus and his reindeer, Sinterklaas rides on a white horse on to rooftops and his helpers, the Zwarte Pieten, listen down chimneys to find out which children are bad or good and then report back to Sinterklaas.

Sinterklaas waves to everyone at the I-Center (Apple store), Alphen aan den Rijn

Sinterklaas waves to everyone at the I-Center (Apple store), Alphen aan den Rijn

Sinterklaas, his horse, and helpers arrive here via boat coming down the canals. It is said that he is coming from Spain and Dutch people have told me that the story is that the kids are told if they are good they will get presents. If they are bad they will go back to Spain with Sinterklaas and Zwarte Pieter. Now that’s the kind of incentive I think we should give kids…seriously, how much better would kids be if they knew that if they were bad they were being ‘shipped out’ so to speak to another country? Brilliant!! I almost regret not having children now because I would love to use that on them. LOL!

Now the history of Sinterklaas seems to be directly related to Saint Nicholas who was a Bishop. He is also known as De Goedheiligman (The Good Holy Man), Sint Nicolaas (Saint Nicholas) or simply as De Sint (The Saint). He is the patron saint of children, sailors, philatelists, and the city of Amsterdam, among others. The reason that it is said that Sinterklaas comes from Spain is because the remains of Saint Nicolaas are buried there. Also being Saint Nicolaas is the patron saint of sailors that is why he arrives via boat in the Netherlands and Belgium.

Sinterklaas and his helpers arrive in the Netherlands

Sinterklaas and his helpers arrive in the Netherlands

One of the things that was a bit strange for me when I first saw it was the Zwarte Pieten (‘Black Peters’). Coming from the States where everything is considered ‘politically incorrect’ and people always find something to complain and sue about my brain had trouble processing the multitudes of people running around in Moorish costumes and black face. It didn’t bother me but I definitely was feeling like someone was going to yell or protest or something…but no one did much to my joy (although in the past there have been a few protests). I knew there was a story why these Zwarte Pieten were black faced so I had to look it up.

The arrival in Alphen!

The arrival in Alphen!

You see there are stories of Saint Nicolaas or Sinterklaas where it was stated that he had a page or servant who was a Moor. This helper or helpers were also considered mischievous. However, in the Middle Ages the term Zwarte Piet was a name for evil and this holiday is all about good and evil, black and white, right and wrong. Good children are rewarded and bad children are punished. Therefore the reference to Zwarte Pieter shouldn’t really be taken so literally as someone who is black or a servant. It’s more a symbol rather than a literal interpretation. Throughout history black has always been representative of evil and white of good and angelic.

Apparently our neighbors know Sinterklaas personally!

Apparently our neighbors know Sinterklaas personally!

Anyway, there are other stories of the history of Sinterklaas too but it would make this blog way too long (I think it already might be…but oh well) so you can do a search and see what you come up with too. Feel free to post your findings in the comments below too. Enlighten us!

Check out our neighbor's kid in the window watching Sinterklaas! Priceless!

Check out our neighbor’s kid in the window watching Sinterklaas! Priceless!

So in the two weeks or so that lead up to Sinterklaas leaving presents or taking children back to Spain with him you’ll find him and his helpers marching around town playing music and handing out candy to the kids. It’s quite fun and festive. In one of our walks into the center of town here in Alphen aan den Rijn we were delighted to run into them doing just that. You can see the video below.


At the end of the video you’ll see me point the camera down because out of the blue one of the Zwarte Pieten was standing beside me so that Matt could take a picture of us together.

Me and Zwarte Pieter, Alphen aan den Rijn, NL

Me and Zwarte Pieter, Alphen aan den Rijn, NL

So it was a great cultural experience and now we know so much more about the traditions of other countries for Christmas! These are the things that make traveling to new places exciting and mind expanding! Love it!

Categories: Alphen aan den Rijn, Challenges Insights and More, Holidays In Other Countries, Netherlands | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

New Year’s Eve In The Netherlands

Fireworks Outside Our Window

Fireworks Outside Our Window

When I arrived here at the end of October I kept hearing what seemed like explosions throughout the town at strange times of the day. Matt didn’t know what they were and said he’d been hearing them all along. We came up with theories that it could be a transformer blowing or maybe something to do with the windmills that are located down the street and various other situations that we felt might produce a noise like that.

We even asked our landlord’s dad who told us he hadn’t been hearing anything but maybe it was fireworks. He stated that they’re not legal in the Netherlands with the exception of about 3 days, December 31 – January 2, but he said sometimes people try to get away with it at other times. B-I-N-G-O! After that we were looking to see who it was every time we heard a loud boom and eventually our persistence paid off. Teenagers!

They roamed around the neighborhood looking all innocent (actually they looked like they were up to something but they thought they looked innocent) and they would discreetly light  something, throw it, and run like hell. Now as clever as they thought they were they would always backtrack to the same area, usually laughing, but if they saw you looking at them they would slink off like they knew nothing.

The Neighborhood Comes Alive!

The Neighborhood Comes Alive!

Anyway, long story short (probably too late for that actually…but I digress) New Year’s Eve morning at 8 a.m. we are awoken but what sounds like a mortar round. Are we being invaded again? After all that’s not unknown in Europe and certainly the Netherlands has had their share of invasions. No! Apparently because it’s New Year’s Eve Day it’s legal and bands of teenagers with backpacks full of fireworks are roaming the streets seeing who can make the loudest explosion! Oh joy! It’s going to be a long day!

By 8 p.m. the firework explosions had been consistent for 12-hours and the novelty was worn off. There were no ‘pretty’ fireworks all day, just the loud bangs of your basic explosives, and I stated that there better be some pretty fireworks at midnight or this whole display of affection for fireworks will have been for naught. Don’t disappoint me Dutch people! Show me what you’ve really got!

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First of all, I should say tell you our town is so quiet that you hardly see anyone during the day except when they are taking their kids to school (the school yard is across the street from our apartment) or picking them up. At night, it’s like a ghost town with the exception of those few wandering teens that really should be home.

But New Year’s Eve at 11:59 p.m. it began! It was amazing! Like clockwork the town all came out of their homes and started lighting off fireworks, the booming kind and much to my delight lots of the ‘pretty’ kind too! This wasn’t the fireworks show of some organized state agency. This was private citizens who had apparently been buying and saving up for New Year’s for some time and the effort was fantastic!

We were delighted by the neighborhood display and figured that it would last a half hour at most because after all these were private citizens. How long could they possibly sustain this massive display? Well let me tell you that growing up on Long Island I remember the greatest fireworks displays were done by the Grimaldi’s. They usually were the ones doing the shows over the Harbor in New York City on July 4th and New Year’s Eve but even their shows only lasted about a half hour or so.

Kind of looks like an Angel to me! What do you think?

Kind of looks like an Angel to me! What do you think?

The show here lasted until about 2:30 – 3:00 a.m. pretty much full tilt! I found myself smiling and laughing like a kid because it was just so awesome and unexpected. Over the last few years in the States fireworks displays have been really measly and unimpressive so I just figured it was like that everywhere. I was wrong. Matt and I have already discussed the possibility of coming back to the Netherlands sometime in the future to experience New Year’s Eve by taking a canal tour in Amsterdam during the fireworks. I can only imagine that would be insanely beautiful!

Well without yammering on any more here is a video of our neighborhood letting loose on New Year’s Eve. There’s even an unconfirmed UFO sighting in there so make sure you watch the whole thing. 🙂 I hope you all enjoy it. We certainly did!

Categories: Alphen aan den Rijn, Alphen aan den Rijn, Netherlands, Netherlands, New Year's In New Places, Video Tours | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

Welcome To Holland!

Me at Schiphol Airport, Amsterdam on Arrival!

I arrived here in Holland on Halloween morning, Matt and my 11th anniversary and thanks to a tail wind of about 100+ MPH my plane arrived a half hour early too. You certainly can’t complain about that. However because we were so early the pilot alerted us that there were no gates for us so we spend that half hour on the runway. Still not a big deal. I was happy to have the biggest part of my travel done with so no complaints from me.

Matt was waiting for me on the other side of the glass wall that separated all the arrivals waiting for their bags and all the people waiting for the arrivals. It was quite like a fishbowl really with the newly arrived being the fish and the people on the other side looking to see which fish they were going to take home with them. Fortunately Matt picked me! 🙂

After getting my bags and a brief visit to the airport Starbucks for a lifesaving latte we set out on the next part of the journey which was getting from Amsterdam to the little town of Alphen aan den Rijn with three big suitcases and a heavy backpack. Matt decided the bus would be best so we boarded and headed out on the half hour journey to Alphen. On arrival at the Alphen bus stop where we were hoping to catch another bus that would take us within a block of our apartment we found that it would be another hour and decided to walk it…with said large rolling luggage and heavy backpack. Needless to say it was the hardest part of the journey and after a few stops  to rest and re-position the bags we made it home.

My view as I write this blog. It’s a nice rainy day to write.

It’s a nice apartment with two bedrooms (one is an office where I am writing this blog..see above picture), bathroom with washer and dryer and a living room/kitchen.

So far I’ve been here four days and I’ve biked to the supermarket just like a native twice (once was even a solo trip…yeah, me!). But mostly we’re laying low so that I can get situated, unpacked, un-jet lagged, and so that Matt can recover from his cold that he has. I’ve grounded him until it’s gone. 🙂 Once he’s feeling better and I am not so darn sleepy we’ll head out to explore some more. Until then I just wanted to touch base with you all and let you know I am here and it’s a really nice little town. Very quiet, clean and everyone I’ve met so far has been really nice and helpful.

I’ll write again soon in a day or two. Until then take care and stay in touch!

Categories: Alphen aan den Rijn, Amsterdam, Netherlands | Tags: , , , | 4 Comments

The Adventure Begins…Atlanta…Vampires…and Holland!

Behold….Atlanta where vampires, friends, and planes await me!

Well the time has finally come to begin my adventure to Holland. Matt has been there for almost four months now and I am now heading there. But first a quick stop in Atlanta…to meet some vampires and see a few friends. Yes, you heard me right…vampires!

Now some of you might not know this but I’ve been reading vampire novels and watching vampire movies since I can remember. My favorite show right now is The Vampire Diaries. So imagine my excitement when I learned that they film the show just outside of Atlanta, Georgia in a town called Covington and that a bunch of the stars of the show were going to be at a celebrity convention called EyeCon Halloween weekend. It fit in perfect with my plans to fly out of Atlanta!

Ian Somerhalder (Damon Salvatore) and Paul Wesley (Stefan Salvatore) of The Vampire Diaries – EyeCon Oct 2012, Atlanta, GA

So I drove to Atlanta and got pictures of myself with my favorite vampires from the show, Damon (Ian Somerhalder) and Stefan (Paul Wesley).

Me and Paul Wesley (A.K.A. Stefan Salvatore) of The Vampire Diaries!

Being a vampire fan (and a real fan of the actors, particularly Ian who has a great foundation called aptly enough The Ian Somerhalder Foundation) I thought it would be really cool to have photos of me with them. When else would I have the opportunity to meet them? Seize the day is what I say!

Me and Ian Somerhalder (A.K.A. Damon Salvatore) of The Vampire Diaries!

Well I met them both and am very happy to report that both Ian and Paul are extremely nice people. Also, Ian is an extremely good hugger. If you ever have the chance to get a hug from him definitely do it. It’s worth it. Also during that weekend I met Ian’s older brother, Bob Somerhalder, who is also extremely nice.

Me and Bob Somerhalder of Built of Barnwood

Bob has a business with his son, Peyton, and his brother, Ian, called Built of Barnwood that is fantastic. With this business they take wood from old buildings and recycle it by making furniture and all kinds of artwork from it all. Beautiful stuff! Also a portion of the money they make goes to great causes as well so definitely check them out at www.Builtofbarnwood.com (also, ‘Like’ them on Face Book by clicking here and Tweet them on Twitter by clicking here.)

Here is an excellent little video with Ian talking about his brother, Bob, and  Built of Barnwood.

After my vampire adventures I headed to our friend’s house to hang out for a few days before getting on my flight to Holland. BTW, I was told that when they were looking for a home to use as the Salvatore’s house in the Vampire Diaries they actually came to this house to check it out. Turns out they wanted something that looked a little darker and a little more like it had been around for hundreds of years so they passed on this house and went to Covington, Georgia instead. Still pretty cool!

Our new travel companion (Gordon…the Gecko) and I arrive at our friends’ house!

I always enjoy visiting with Scott and Cyndi. They have a beautiful home, four polite boys and they are always so hospitable. Thank you all for letting me invade your home. We’ll visit you again on the way back!

This is what controlled chaos looks like…trying to repack my bags for the flight!

Now many of you may not know why we’re heading to Holland so I’ll explain here. Matt, my other half, is helping another chiropractor over there to set up some chiro offices so we’re going to live there for a bit while that’s happening. And of course, we’ll be visiting other countries while we’re over there too. I know England, Switzerland and probably Germany are definitely on the list and who knows where else but then that’s what this blog is about, isn’t it?

So my adventures begin tonight and tomorrow when I arrive it will be Halloween and Matt and my 11th anniversary! Holy cow! How did that happen? I doesn’t seem like that long ago we met and started dating! Time flies!

Here I am in the limo on the way to the airport…

Oh and one more thing I want to mention from this side of the pond. The new international terminal at Atlanta Airport is actually LEEDS certified! For those of you who do not know LEEDS certified means the building is the best as far as being green and conserving energy.

Cool lights and decor at ATL airport’s new LEEDS certified International Terminal!

It was built to be energy efficient! I think that’s fantastic and more buildings should be created like that. We’ve only got one earth. Let’s do what we can to make it healthy for everyone and everything.

Another photo of ATL’s new International Terminal!

Well the next time I talk with you I’ll be in Holland with my adventures from the other side of the pond! I hope you’ll come back and read all about it.

So stay tuned and make sure you subscribe to the blog by entering your email address in the box at the upper right hand side of this blog. I promise you won’t get spam. The only thing you’ll get is an email from me when I post a new travel adventure! Go on do it. You’ll make me really happy if you do. 🙂

Categories: Alphen aan den Rijn, Amsterdam, Atlanta, Georgia, Marietta, Netherlands | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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