Captain’s Log 5,592
I am still recovering from the trip. I think because I had to return to WORK, it’s been a lot more difficult. Nothing exciting to distract me. No trips into Amsterdam on the train. No walks on the sand dunes. No interesting cemeteries. No road trips through the woods of the Netherlands. Just….work. And lots of it. At least only 18 people left me voicemails after listening to my outgoing message that said I would be gone for over two weeks. Let’s not even talk about the emails.
When we were on our roadtrip, we stayed at two amazing hotels. The first was the Vigilante in Makkum. It is located right on the beach! Unfortunately, we were there on a very blustery day with rain, so I grabbed an image off the internet. My photos are just plain lousy.
Gorgeous views of IJsselmeer, the big lake that was formed when they built a dike across the entrance to the Waddensea (which used to be called the Zuider Zee). Amazing Dutch engineering.
Our next hotel was the Overbosch in Garderen. Located in the deep woods, the area is home to all sorts of wildlife, including wild boar. We sort of hoped to see one – and sort of hoped NOT to see one.
Much more rustic than the Vigilante, and much more elegant as well. No wild boar, however.
The day after we arrived, Anneke and Bert took us to the Keukenhof Gardens located in Lisse. They had never visited them before, so it was a fine adventure for everyone. Amazing! 40 acres of flowers and almost 7 miles of trails. We could have spent a week there.
Lots to see and do….including the tourist fascination with wooden shoes. This is my friend, DeAnn.
Spectacular tulips! Everywhere!
We moved on to the city of Haarlem after we visited the flower fields. Anneke is a great tour guide and knows so many things about the different cities. Her perspective and explanations were wonderful.
DeAnn and Anneke discussing the history of Haarlem.
I think Haarlem was my very favorite place. Smaller than Amsterdam, it still has the charm and the history. Lots of artists live there too. Well, artists live everywhere. The Netherlands is an extremely artsy country.
Window pots in Haarlem. How could you not love this?
During our walk into another part of the city, Anneke and Bert explained that we had just entered the red light district of Haarlem. Apparently, every larger city has one. Compared to Amsterdam, this one was tiny. Just two houses. We felt safe taking photos (and watching a few customers come and go). No pun intended.
The red lanterns give it away. I would not have noticed this otherwise. Only one red light glowing in the window. I think when we left, that light was also out. Customer!
We did venture into the red light district in Amsterdam too. Much bigger than what we saw in Haarlem. MUCH! Anneke cautioned us against taking photos, so I snagged this one off the internet. This is pretty much what we saw. We ventured down a few alleys. I was pretty freaked out. Heinous was along. Having Heinous pose with a prostitute would have been a great shot, but it probably wouldn’t have been too smart.
Girls in windows. Some were being sexy and making kissy faces next to the glass. Some were texting on their phones. All of them were in lacy underwear.
I was researching the red light districts before I wrote this, and not all of the women work out of buildings. Some work out of houseboats right on the canals. Not sure which city.
If this boat is rockin’, don’t bother knockin’. Sorry. Had to.
Going to drink a lot of coffee today so I can stay up even longer. I konked out on the sofa last night around 7:30 and woke up at 3:00 in the morning….still wearing my work clothes. Not very conducive to good sleeping. I am meeting with the theatre group tonight to discuss our summer show. That should be fun. I think I am addicted to fun. Better than cigarettes or cheap wine.