How to get a free bicycle in Holland
1. Approach group of cyclists. 2. Shout out “hey that’s my bike!” 3. Collect bike(s) left behind.
Me: is there a Dutch equivalent of the word "queer?"
My Dutch Teacher: Yes, "flicker," but it's a VERY negative word. Just like queer, it's a very insulting term for homosexuals.
Me: ...uh, queer isn't really an insult anymore.
My Dutch Teacher: Oh?
Me: No. It's a word for anyone. Queer is for gays, bisexuals, pansexuals, transexuals, asexuals, transvestites, two-spirited people, even people who are straight but don't feel right about the ideas of what is "normal." Being queer is being what you want, while also saying that what you should be is actually, kinda oppressive.
My Dutch Teacher: Is that really what the word means now?
Me: ...to more and more people every day...yeah.
My Dutch Teacher: That...is AWESOME.
Moral: when a middle-aged, European woman congratulates North-Americans on gender-bending, take it as a compliment. I do.
Ik ben jarig
Not much else to say there. Just happy I can say it in Dutch. Have a good day for me everyone :) (Image from Kevin&Amanda)
So, Christmas was a long time ago...
Question: what happens when you go on vacation for a month? Answer: unicorns and rainbows and euphoria abound? Question: wait, I didn’t word that properly. What happens when you return to work after going on vacation for a month? Answer: …you get sucked into a dizzying black hole of despair and don’t come out for several months? Bingo. Truth be told kids, I had a lot of...
Happy New Years Tumblr folk! May yours be just as crazy as ours.
Ikea Hax: jewelry armoire
Here’s a secret about me. I collect jewelry. Vintage, quirky, handmade, costume: I love them all. Because of this love, I have accumulated a lot of jewelry, and the process of moving has forced them to live in odd places with no order. like so. It’s very tragic you see, all these lovely things strewn about without homes occasionally tumbling onto the floor and putting themselves...
How I (Christmas) Roll
Some might remember last year, when I lamented the lack of big, poofy, christmas bows. Well, I might be a spoiled brat, but when I whined, it was because this is my Christmas supply over here: Christmas gift bags, boxes, paper, and ribbon out the yang. And let’s not forget of course… …my precious! Christmas is serious business yo.
How to Travel to Ottawa
1. Take a train to Schipol (1-ish hours) 2. Fly in “en vliegtuig” (8+ hours) (realise you have no socks. Buy something to keep yo feet warm. Regret nothing.) 3. Take a shuttle bus to a tiny, creepy train station in Montreal. (notice that your camera has died from the cold.) 4. Wait for 2 hours. Steal Wi-fi from the First Class cafe. 5. Take a train to Ottawa. Be the only one on...
Christmas is commin' early!
This time next Monday I’ll be on a plane, headin’ home for Christmas. Somehow or another, I have to fit all this stuff in my suitcase, and hope no one inspects it :P The theme is Dutch novelties and other lovely things that aren’t found back home (<ahem> Belgian beers). I’m very excited to bring such treasures home…but I might have forgotten some...
It's (not) all the same
Okay Holland, we need to talk. I’ve given you the benefit of the doubt every time you’ve said “these dropjes taste different,” and each time that has proven to be a lie. You have been doing this on purpose haven’t you? The thing is, I actually LIKE black liquorice As a child, I remember being gifted lots of black jelly beans because no one else could stand...
This is a bed...
…and this… …and this too… …apparently. Is there really a bed behind all that cardboard? Tune in next episode to find out!
You Keep using that Word...
Guy 1 on the train: ...F***in'! F****!
Guy 2 on the train: NAY! Ik wil.... F****. Zij...F**** stupid.
Guy 1 on the train: Ja...F*-
Me: Hey. I couldn't help overhearing your conversation.
Them: .... uh?
Me: Well, actually there was only one word I really understood. Could you not use it? Like, ever again?
Me: Much better. Thanks!
Wat Betenkent "Guit"?
“binnen was beter de guit wist dat wel” Seriously Dutch people, what does it mean? Google has told me two different things, and if Google doesn’t know, that means I need to find an actual DICTIONARY. The horror.
Steps for a Cooler World IV: dress from a scarf
Step One: find a pashmina shawl Step Two: fold and sew the sides together, leaving space at the top for armholes Step Three: cut out the neckline you want Step Four: tailor however you like, or leave it as is and have it be reversible! YAY!
Paws vs. Feet
Me: "That dog has dirty voeten (feet)"
Laurens: "Not "voeten," "pootjes." Animals feet are called "pootjes."
Me: "Well, I have "schoon" (clean) pootjes!"
Laurens: "voeten," you're not an animal."
Me: ..."I'm not?"
Laurens: ..."Well, you are...but don't call your feet "pootjes"
Me: ..."Dutch is weird."
We took a holiday to Greece. We stayed close to the bitch who was verry hot.– Apparently there’s only one hot bitch in Greece. The more you know…
We went to the shopping place and I bought a lot of clout.– Clout: I’ve been doing it wrong.
We have a badroom end a chicken in my realy big hous.– Marking exams. Best served with popcorn.
Mind the Crap
So, I was going to start this post with a picture like I usually do, but I couldn’t bring myself to type “big, steaming pile of dog crap on an ornately cobbled stone sidewalk” into Google search, because there are some things you should NEVER type into Google search. (Ever.) That being said, you’re just going to have to conjure up images yourself of rotting canine...
Benefits of walking behind a group of teen boys in...
1. Brush-up on Dutch swears. 2. Enjoy scenery (as they walk very slowly and take up the whole sidewalk) 3. Free pot blowback. Stay classy gents!
Don't Take This the "Wrong" Way
So there’s this thing here about coffee, which is literally “wrong.” It’s pretty much all milk, with just a bit of coffee. Like a latte, but with coffee. It’s actually quite pleasant as well as popular. However, it will always be incorrect because of its name: “koffie verkeerd” with the second word literally to “wrong,”...
Movin' on in!
Moving into a new place is never pretty…nor is it ever easy. It is however, always exciting. [[MORE]] We’ve gotten our living room colours down. It’s not typical to paint colour on the walls in these here parts, but I’ve gone and done it anyways. (no one ever said I am traditional) We’ve also begun transforming the master bedroom into a big closet, because...
Movin' on up!
A few months ago, my partner and I went apartment shopping. We needed to find a place between my partners work in Eindhoven, and mine in Roosendaal. We scouted around in Breda, Tilburg, Hooven and Nijmegen for something we liked. It was hard, thankless, dusty and often lacked flooring or basic appliances, but we found something to make ‘gezellig’ Nice eh? We think so too. Of...
Less is more (unless we're talking ice cream)
Me: if you call an ice cream cone an 'ijsje,' what do you call a popsicle?
Laurens: the same thing.
Me: REALLY?! but...well...what about ice cream sundays, banana splits, creamsicles, fudgesicles, freezies or push pops?
Laurens: ...I don't know what most of those are.
Me: ...we need to get you to a North American convenience store right now.
zeevarken-deactivated20121209 asked: 'Want' and 'omdat' are interchangeable. They both use a different word order though. 'Ik ben moe, want ik heb hard gewerkt' vs 'Ik ben moe, omdat ik hard gewerkt heb'. You can also start a sentence with 'omdat', this is not possible with 'want'; 'Omdat ik hard gewerkt heb, ben ik moe'
Sittin’ in a place called “Te Koop” (for sale), where everything literally can be bought; all the lights, decor, furniture, and of course food have a price. Sippin’ on a strong Belgian beer as a fresh salad with figs and shaved apples shaped into flowers is served to me. It is perfectly made and portioned and makes my heart skip the best beats it can. I am later served a...
Me: Love, why are there always stroopwafles (cookies) at the checkout lines in hardware stores?
Couple approaching the que: "hey, would you like some tasty stroopwafles?" "yeah! great idea."
A Lawn Chair with Wheels
Did I tell you all that I bought a new bike?! Say hello to the “Giant Revive”. It’s extremely comfy and has super tiny wheels that make it kinda hard to steer, but you get the hang of it. I’ve been cycling it 30-60km a week for the past little while, and it’s like a cloud. If you come over, I’ll let you give it a shot. (maybe)
That’s…a good question…– a Dutch person trying to explain when to use “omdat” and when to use “want” (synonyms for the word “because”)
What's for lunch?...Oh...right.
There is no easy way to say this, well, actually there is. If you wanted to be polite, you’d say that Dutch eating customs can be a bit minimalistic, simple or uninspired. If you don’t feel like being polite, you’d substitute boring in the place of those kinder concepts and make yourself a diversely flavoured asian dish with a lot of fresh koriander and lemongrass. (Provided...
Pigeon gets on ride. Carousel spins Other pigeons wait their turn. (Yes, this is newsworthy. I stood forever watching these dudes try to eat from the feeder whilst giggling excitedly.)
Awkward in the 80's
Me: I like your shirt, but it's telling lies about you
Me: What does it say on the front?
Student: "Made in the 80's"
Me: Right, and how old are you?
To be someone's umbrella: a story about strangers...
For several months, I’ve been going regularly to Antwerp. I leave my lessons at the same time, and walk to the train station on a regular route. Other regulars walk this route too, and although I do not know them, or anything about them, I recognize them and they recognize me. On Mondays there is a tired looking older man who waits for the 10:00 Amsterdam train with a push trolley full of worn,...
Steps for a Cooler World V: embroidered post cards
Step one: find some thin cardboard and embroidery thread Step two: find pictures you like Step three: use the handwheel of a sewing machine to punch holes in the board Step four: thread them joyously YAY!
A Time Warp, England and a Wet Dog
UGH. You guys! I’m sorry! Every time I get on the train to Antwerp I think about my poor, dusty blog and how I’ve become “one of those” people who let things get dusty for all to see. I’m going to make it up to you by posting photos of a wet dog… …wait. Wet dog is not yet wet. Just dirty. There we go! Awww…uh…awww? Wet dog is not...
I've never even been to Israel
Man: Where in Israel are you from?
Me: ...Uh, I'm not from Israel.
Man: Oh! You look Jewish though. Doesn't she?
Me: ...What exactly about me is it that you think looks Jewish?
Man: Oh, nothing. Nevermind. Goodbye.
Me: ...(wait, don't go! Now I'm so curious!)
How I Gassed Myself While Putting on Makeup: a...
Long story short, I unknowingly triggered a chemical reaction that created a dangerous gas, and then exposed myself to it. How did I do this? Well…um…I used the washroom. It’s not what you think. It’s actually WAY funnier (but also scarier) than that… [[MORE]] I cycle to work, and when I get to work, I do my makeup there. I do this...
Antwerp at 9:45pm
Random dude 1: Hey meisje! Dutch, Dutch
Me: I'm flattered, but no.
Random dude 1: Give me your number?!
Me: I just politely said no...
Random, older dude: Hey meisje! hay sounds and junk...
Me: (say nothing, just walk)
Random, older dude:
Random, Moroccan dude: (hearing comment yelled out) Heeeello! Come with me for a Drink?
Me: No, I'm not interested
Random, Moroccan dude: Yes you are
Me: Ugh! What the hell is wrong with these dudes?!
Random dude 1: Hoi mevrouw! surprise seeing you here?
The Secret is hay Sounds, Right?
Tomorrow I begin a 3-month long Dutch Course at the University of Antwerp, and I’m kinda nervous about it. Can anyone tell me the secrets to this language? It’s just <g>hay sounds, right? Like, that’s all there is…and weird multiple letter vowels…and bread with sprinkles. That’s basically it right? Also, curse words. I guess I’ll need to know...
When Art Historians Think too Hard...
- What was (probably) once a great cathedral When Laurens and I were in Namur, we happened upon a very large hunk of a Church in the city centre. We didn’t really think too much to visit it until we saw an open door tucked away, almost out of public view, and impulsively dashed in to investigate. What we encountered inside however was NOT AT ALL what I expected to find in the one of the...
Steps for a Cooler World IV: ring box
Step one: find a box Step Two: cut up fabric you could care less about Step Three: roll and fit into box Step Four: put some rings in it Step Five: get more rings (or get your family to mail you your ring collection back home.) YAY!
Look at the sharks teeth Denise. What do they mean?– Dutch roads have white triangles on them indicating if you have to yield or not. They call these “Haaien Tanden,” or “Sharks Teeth.”
Birthday Roadtrip: Maredsous & Dinant
It all started with a beer… - Test subjects: all were delish (except La Trappe. Idunno why, but they taste lifeless to me and then make me burp excessively) I was testing beers to (smuggle) bring to Florida for my Family to try when I met Maredsous. She was a little shorter than the others, but looked pretty tough. She was also a blonde, so you know, how could I resist? Long...
lbespace asked: The little shells you saw in Namur are the way of st. James (El Camino de Santiago).
Birthday Roadtrip: Namur, Belgium
- If anyone knows the significance of these street shells please lemme know. I know what you’re thinking. I travel a lot. I just got back from Florida and am already going somewhere else. I am a brat. Well here’s the thing…it was my birthday and the weather was great. I can’t really think of any other justifications, so that must mean what I just said = a good excuse...