Friday, February 03, 2012
What you can find in pursuit of the totally mundane
This lovely place is Maassluis. It is one of those enchanting fishing villages on the estuary that flows from Rotterdam out into the North Sea. Luckily, it is just inside the great flood gates that protect Rotterdam from sea surges and excessively high tides, so although there is no lock between the river and the main harbours, it is safe from extreme conditions.
I had to go there today as it is where my new bookkeeper has his offices, and despite the horrible weather that disrupted the entire country, I was really glad I had the chance to see it.
Visits to one's bookkeeper aren't exactly guaranteed to inspire enthusiasm, but what a little gem of a place Maassluis is. It is further from Rotterdam than would ever be convenient for us to live there, but it is one of those places where you kind of wish you could.
The snow doesn't often do much for this type of scenery, but today, it highlighted the colours, the yellows, the reds and the warm earthy bricks of the elegant 18th century Dutch houses that line the quays. The sky was pearly and the water glimmered with its sheen of ice. A lovely, lovely scene, even though my hands were shaking with cold as I took these photos.
It had taken me two hours to get there, courtesy of the snow, road and rail chaos - and longer than I have ever cared to wait on freezing draughty platforms. It should have been a twenty minute ride. Even so, I can honestly say I really enjoyed the ad...venture.