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My journey home, the Netherlands

By Niels Lameijer on Feb 03, 2010 at 12:00 AM in My Life


I intend to visit my relatives and friends in the Netherlands at least once a year. This year I choose to go in ‘dead of winter’ and since the Dutch are experiencing the coldest month in a century, I am wondering if this was the smartest of moments to travel east!

Forest Ulvenhout II

The snow white landscapes are stunning however and the Dutch winter foods like ‘pea-soup’ and ‘stamppot’ (mashed potatoes with a green vegetable like Kale) taste ever better when the temperatures are below freezing.

Every time I fly back to my home country, different catch my attention. Getting of the KLM-plane (best airline, hands-down, to fly to Holland, by the way) I immediately noticed:

  • The fashionable glasses the Dutch wear.
  • How tall they are.
  • How they are rushing ahead not seeming to notice other people at all!

It is also amazing how quickly I feel at home again. This time it already started in the plane just before landing when I saw the little villages structured in such  a familiar way. When I was looking out the window I instantly felt a calming sensation, like a voice telling me “welcome home child, you are safe here.”

About an hour I saw three brightly smiling faces on the other side of the sliding doors! My parents and my sister were jumping around with excitement! It feels so good to arrive at an airport and a loved one (in my case three!) is there to pick me up. I was immediately taken to lunch, and treated to real Dutch Pea-soup, with black rye-bread and ham, exactly what I needed after a 10 hour flight.

After I arrived at my parents’ house, home, I noticed another real Dutch treat: high quality water! I tasted it already by, automatically, grabbing a cup of water from the tab, but later in shower I realized it consciously: no chlorine, no other weird smells, just pure water! What a delight; drinking delicious water from the tap, what a luxury. Living here I completely took it for granted, like we so easily do, and now I realize how fantastic it is to have high quality, bleach free (yuk), water.