I was just about to write a post about my “Eating Amsterdam” trip – but then I realised I only posted 3 times in April – and sooooo much happened last month! So that one will have to wait for now… and in the meantime you get a kinda summary post about April, you lovely springy sunny month, you! (Well, mostly.)
Not sure if I’m going to make this a regular thing, but it’ll do for now as I have a few things I want to write about but they don’t necessarily need individual posts.
So, roughly in chronological order (I totally just went downstairs to get my calendar – goldfish brain!!) here’s the Dutch-related stuff that happened to me in April 2015:
1. I ate Amsterdam.
As in, I went on a food tour of Amsterdam and ate EVERYTHING. Even drop (liquorice)… my nemesis. Are you proud?
I will write a whole post about this (promise) because it was amazing. But in the meantime, here’s a picture of some bitterballen. Because, duh.
2. My 1 year Expat Anniversary
I was just about to post this and then I realised I totally forgot to even mention the fact that I have lived in the Netherlands for a year! What did I do to celebrate? I went to Germany on a business trip… ha ha. Oh well, there’s always next year…
I’m not entirely sure how I feel about the fact it’s been a whole year… in some ways it’s gone by in a flash and in other ways… I can watch Dutch films and TV and listen to Dutch radio… and TALK DUTCH TO DUTCH PEOPLE. So that’s still mind-blowing to me.
I read an article today about “Being stuck in the middle of two worlds” by Amanda (of Expat Life with a Double Buggy fame) and I totally relate. She says “I’ll never be mistaken for being Dutch, yet I don’t feel that England is my home anymore.” TOTALLY, TOTALLY get it.
Also love that she compares expat life to Tom Branson moving into Downton Abbey. This makes me laugh, nod along and feel like something is missing at the same time. (And if you don’t watch Downtown Abbey… YOU NEED IT IN YOUR LIFE – LIKE – NOW.)
3. My sister came to visit – so we went to Utrecht
Not really news in itself… except that we properly did Utrecht: A guided walking tour, a canal tour AND we walked all 465 steps to the top of the Dom tower! Oh, and my sister is 5 and a half months pregnant… so there’s that too.
And now from the top! For reference… look for the red bike…
As with #1, this trip will also get a full blog post shortly… I took a bazillion photos despite it being a dreary old day.
4. Visited Keukenhof
I totally get it. This is one of those touristy things you have to do, once. And once was enough!
We went on a Friday, a very sunny Friday and it was ram-packed. I’m not going to do a blog post about this, because Jennifer over at Expat Lingo has already summed the experience up perfectly!! Here’s her step-by-step virtual tour: Tramped under the tulips at the Keukenhof
Instead… here are a few snaps I manged to take without 20 people getting in the way:
And to give you a small glimpse into the volume of tourists…
5. Blogger meet-up
By far one of my highlights in April was meeting up with some fellow bloggers. In addition to Jennifer from Expat Lingo, who I’ve just mentioned above, I also met up with Sophie from Sophie in Clogs, Aislinn from Ace the Adventure and Alison of A Flamingo in Utrecht. We met at Alison’s gorgeous Italian wine bar, Vino Veritas which is co-owned with her Italian partner Giovanni.
It was a fantastic evening and we have already set a date to meet up again in June! Fascinating to meet other expat bloggers and share our stories. With wine, of course!
6. King’s Day
Last, but by no means least, were the birthday celebrations of King Willem-Alexander on 27th April. Once again, the weather did not disappoint, despite the forecasts consistently predicting rain until the day itself! Phew!
(We definitely have a problem. We have so much orange crap it’s hard to know what to wear!!)
In the end I plumped for a tiara with orange fluff (classy), Dutch flags painted on my face (standard) plus the following ensemble…
King’s Day afternoon was spent strolling around the canals, meeting up with friends and listening to live music. The evening was a haze of wine, beer, new Dutch “friends” and more beer. How about you?
Thanks April. You were awesome.