Monday, July 28, 2008

Come to the Netherlands....

where the woods are green in summer and trees are bare in winter. Farmed for generations the lovely musky smell of wooded areas now have a new and improved smell. No more dead leaves, leafmould and compost. No more damp, cool shade, pine or undescribable rotting scents for you. No, we can proudly present our new and improved woods for you.
Fancy a stroll in the vanilla forest? Soon to come: Flower Meadow Breeze, Fresh Sea Air and Lush Lavender!


As usual I have no idea where I'll end up when I go off cycling and this Saturday was no different. I tend to go in whatever direction my nose is travelling (translation of a Dutch saying) and stop off on the way if there's anything that catches my attention. So this time I went off in a northerly direction past the zoo, Schaarsbergen (a small village that borders on Arnhem and is part of the county), and then headed east. On the way I could see the storm front approaching that would end in a great big thunderstorm and lots of rain.

My first real stop was at Zonheuvel, a wooded farmland area. Just in time to see the farmer and his wife collecting the straw for this winter.

I've only been in this area once before and didn't even know there was a small woodland area there but the peace and quite and the coolness amongst the trees was very much needed on a hat, humid day like saturday.

Images like this in I suppose you cold say the middle of nowhere I find infinitely intriguing. Who put it there, what's behind the 'roadblock' and why?

I just love being out & about, discovering the beauty around me, landscapes that have been manmade and managed for centuries, where nature somehow still finds ways to thrive and survive. Nothing spectacular maybe but definitely something you never get to see when you go there by car. More soon I hope.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

The Hague

A quick stop in The Hague with Chris (who had to pick up some work) on the way to Rotterdam and lo-and-behold the couturier he works with has a shop in a really small street near Palace Noordeinde. A huge statue of the "father of the fatherland" stands opposite the palace entrance. Prince William also known as 'William the Silent' is the founding father of the House of Orange-Nassau to which the current Dutch monarch Queen Beatrix belongs to.

More info on Prince William can be found here

Sorry no pics of Rotterdam this time. I had a lovely day and evening with Chris and from what I saw that day of The Hague, I've decided I definitely want to go back and spend a day taking more pics.

Funky bike shop

I love what they've done with the decor!

Amsterdam, The Hague, Rotterdam

Here's something we hardly ever do but I spent a Saturday with my friend Chris recently in which we went 'sightseeing' instead of shopping. Believe me that's a rarity for both of us. Amsterdam first. These were taken along the Haarlemmerstraat.

a selection of wonderful breads in the shop window just had to be photgraphed

The West Indies House. Nowadays it's in use for weddings and receptions

This wonderful Art Nouveau bulding still had it's original features. That must have been one proud shop owner in days gone by

I love backlighting. Somehow the shape of guilding becomes clearer and it can add a sense of drama to the photo.