Saturday, January 23, 2010


For days now, I've come to my blog, thinking I might have the time to update it, but sadly I don't. Life is just a bit too hectic right now. It doesn't make me happy, and I've made a decision to ensure it doesn't happen again, but for now, it's necessary that I shut down, close off and wish you all the best till later. Tot ziens, à la prochaine, hasta la

Wednesday, January 06, 2010

The Dutch do it on Ice

While the rest of Europe dives for cover and refuge from the snow, the Dutch gleefully take to the ice. I really love the joy with which all Nederlanders, great and small, relish this national sport. They positively rub their hands with anticipation waiting for the temperatures to drop. The ice has apparently to be 12cm's thick before it is considered safe enough for skating, and yesterday, the pronouncement all cloggies have been waiting for was made. So whoopee!! Off they went today to Henschoter lake, near Utrecht. The picture below was taken from this article where I found the story. I'm no skater myself, but I'm looking forward to watching some soon.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Sea changes for the New Year

As has become our habit at new year, we went to the beach today. This time, we ventured further south - hopefully a portent of changes to come, because our first of January 2010 excursion took us to France instead of our Zeeuws coast. The photos above were taken at Brays Dunes near Dunkerque. It was breathtakingly cold, but a beautiful day and we revelled in the brisk walk along the sands and dunes. After this, we went to Bergues (see photos below), a beautiful town with medieval fortifications and a moat. The centre had clearly been badly damaged, probably in WW1, but much of it remains charming and untouched.

France draws and pulls at me. I like to think it has something to do with the French blood that fights for dominance in my English veins (my maternal grandfather was french). I always feel I've come home when I cross the border. Everything about the country seems (absurdly) more attractive than anywhere else I've been in Europe. This coming summer, I really hope we will make it to France by boat. I think it will probably be in the Hennie H, and if not, the Vereeniging, although the HH is more of a practical proposition given that it is more than halfway there already.

I am currently doing some studying, the end result being a higher diploma in teaching English as a foreign language; the reason being that in the coming years, I would like to try and find work in France. It was my dream when I came back to Europe and is my dream still. If I can just do it for a couple of years, then who knows, maybe we'll decide to stay and maybe we won't, but at least I'll have been there, done that and fulfilled the quest. Talking of resolutions and it being New Year....

Have any of you made any that you have a hope of achieving??

It was so cold I used my neck warmer as a hat...fetching isn't it??


Thanks to everyone who has followed me here over the past year. It's been a pleasure to share our watery world with you, as well as all the other tid bits that make up our lives in the flat lands. I hope you all have a wonderful, peaceful and fulfilling 2010. Keep well, love from VallyP