Local Heart, Global Soul

May 22, 2017

Meeting The Royal Family ….70’s Style.

Yesterday’s post from the Garderen Sand Sculpture festival showed Dutch artist Rien Poortvliet helping the (then) Dutch Queen Juliana, and other members of the royal family out of the “Golden Coach” on Prinsesdag. This is the day of the official Dutch opening of Parliament and the coach makes it’s way from Palace Westeinde to the old parliament building. Large crowds line the streets every year to watch the Golden Coach pass by. Rien’s role was a special privilege and a very significant one.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Wikipedia / Dutch Artist / Rien Poortvliet
Garderen Sand Sculpture Festival

June 25, 2017

Rocks In My Head, or Bolders In The Car Park…

Filed under: PHOTOGRAPHY,THE NETHERLANDS — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

In the late summer of 2016, Himself and I managed a short weekend away by ourselves: the first in more years than we could remember.

Having visited Garderen where Himself went for long walks and bike rides and I spent the day photographing the Garderen Sand Sculpture, we are now off to somewhere new.

A quick trip to the north west finds us in the province of Flevoland, and things get intriguing because Himself wants our destination to be a surprise.

Curious, I am trying to second guess where we might be going, and getting more and more confused all the time because all I see is open polderland.

Then we pass a strange sign: it says: ” Welkom op de zeebodem“. (Welcome to the bottom of the sea”). I see fields, so what on earth does this mean?

A short distance later we turn off the main road, the sign says “Schokland”, and later into a large car parking area. In the centre of the car park are a cluster of massive boulders. The information board says:  “Stenen uit Noorwegen“, (Stones from Norway) and I learn that “these stones were donated in 1980 by the Norwegen municipality of Ringerike, to the municipality of Noordoostpolder to confirm their ties of friendship. A, B, and C: Igelberg granit, D: Migmatite, E: Gneis.” (Himself and I didn’t know what this last one was in English).

A little distance further a wooden boat stand propped off the ground. The information text there reads: “Terug naar de zee“, (Back to the sea). ” We can return to the sea through the opening in the bottom of the boat . Look through the hole and say sail along,  with this piece of art. Surrounded by the noise of the waves, the screeching seagulls and the smell of old wood and tar we sail back to a lost era.” O.K., I can’t say that I am any further enlightened. We head inside to solve the mystery that this puzzle presents…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

June 24, 2017

Attempting To Find The Perfect Composition…

Filed under: PHOTOGRAPHY,THE NETHERLANDS — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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Last summer on a weekend away Himself and I headed from the town of Garderen to the Dutch province of  Flavland. The province mostly comprises of an “island”  located in the Ijselmeer, all of it man-made reclaimed polderland.
Approaching one of the bridges that attached the island to mainland Netherlands, we find stunning views so pull onto a side road that leads to a viewing point so that I can take a break and take some photographs. The light on the water, views of boats on the water, buildings in the distance, mean that there are plenty of places to zoom in to. There are also several large groups of birds gathering on the water: they make their own portrait as I attempt to find the perfect composition.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

June 23, 2017

Leaving The Veluwe Behind…

Leaving Garderen in The Veluwe on a “weekend for two”, Himself and I head lazily towards the province of Flevoland. The distance isn’t far but we are avoiding the motorways as far as possible, enjoying the small roads of the Veluwe before the forests become the open landscapes of the flat farmlands that dominate the rest of the country. As we start to get close, I see what I think might be buoys for the fishing industry. The shapes and sizes are interesting and as traffic starts to build up, we slow down and I get some photographs as we go past.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Nooks and crannies for plants and insects…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

First I thought this was the butt of a horse, but it turns out it’s a silverback gorilla (there is a large wildlife park close by). Sadly I didn’t manage to get a front face shot…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

June 22, 2017

You Never Know When You Might Turn Up A Gem…

Filed under: Garderen,PHOTOGRAPHY,THE NETHERLANDS — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

During our 2016 visit to Garderen, Himself and I turn out of the drive of the Hotel ’t Speulderbos Bilderberg and before we head away to our destination, spot a tiny roadside stall just meters from the hotel entrance.

Usually we would have been in a hurry to get on to our next destination, but feeling in a nonchalant, carefree mood, we decided to stop as soon as we saw that there were boxes of books laid out.

It has to be noted that in the Netherlands you need to obtain a permit to hold a “garage sale” or to sell articles on the street on any occasion other than “Koningsdag” (Kings Day) then the monarch is male and “Koninginnedag”, (Queens Day) when the monarch is female.

Therefore this kind of thing is not as widely seen as it is in other countries.

Sadly a delve though the books revealed nothing to our taste, but you never know when you might turn up a gem, so it’s always worth a quick look.

Luckily the weather was glorious and the cyclists are starting to appear, so hopefully they had a few successful sales later on. Himself and I are now taking the scenic route, not southwards towards home, but north, to somewhere special that Himself wants me to see…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

June 21, 2017

Vintage Head-Turning Beauties…

Filed under: Garderen,PHOTOGRAPHY,THE NETHERLANDS — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
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As Himself and I leave the Hotel ’t Speulderbos  Bilderberg hotel in the Veluwe, we pass by the group of classic car enthusiasts who have been staying at the hotel and are now preparing to leave. I notice that they have set their cars out on display on the lawn in front of the hotel and some of the group are inspecting the other cars. Some owners are polishing their vehicles before they hit the road, the cars are already gleaming, immaculate, head-turning beauties. I take photographs as we take the driveway past them.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Hotel ’t Speulderbos / Garderen – Veluwe / Hotel Bilderberg Group

June 20, 2017

Of Course We Ate More Than We Intended…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

You know the feeling when you have eaten too much but everything looks so amazing that you are tempted to take something more?

That pretty much describes our breakfast on the second morning at Hotel ’t Speulderbos / Bilderberg in the summer of 2016.
Located in Garderen in the heart of the Veluwe, a lovely wooded and as close to “national park” area you will get in a tiny crowded country like the Netherlands, this a wonderfully quiet place to wake up in.

I’d taken a zillion photographs of the breakfast buffet before I set out to see the Sand Sculpture festival the day before, our mega early rising meant that we were some of the first guests to arrive, something I took full advantage of as my camera shutter got busy.

Sunday’s breakfast was altogether a different affair. We slept in, (which for Himself, means rising at 7:00 a.m. instead of 5:00 a.m.) Being a “normal” person I slept on for another hour, finding Himself already showered, dressed and reading a book in the early morning sun on the outside of our ground floor French doors.

By the time we kicked ourselves into action and entered the breakfast room it was crowded. This time I focused my camera on a few things that took my fancy.

I liked how they stood the eggs up in a bed of salt, the tiny dished for guests to scoop out hagelslag (chocolate sprinkles) so that they could take it to their table and assemble it there. Just past Reception I saw a display of local beers, and whilst I detest the stuff the labels are intriguing and I take snaps to show to our beer loving friends.

Himself picked out a few to take back and try, and a few as gifts, I contented myself with photos. For some reason I am drawn to taking photographs of bread, even before I started this blog, the allure of a cracked crust dusted in flour has been irristable.

Bread therefore features heavily in this post, and also jars filled with “things various”, a strange mix of everything from bulgur to sundried tomatoes. Breakfast itself was as delicious as the day before, I would love to have someone set up this buffet for me at home every day, Luckily for my waistline this is definitely a dream. Himself and I of course ate more than we intended, don’t we all when the delicacies are laid out so invitingly? The it was back to the room to pack the bag and get onto the road. We have an unusual destination in mind.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Hotel ’t Speulderbos / Garderen – Veluwe / Hotel Bilderberg Group

June 19, 2017

This Was A Delicious Surprise!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Following yesterdays post, Himself and I were in Garderen in the east of the country for a quiet weekend away.

I had spent Saturday touring the Sand Sculpture festival, with the aid of a wheelchair, managing to see everything from start to finish.

Himself  first enjoyed a long walk in the forests of the Veluwe and then hired a bike from the hotel and cycled to the birthplace of his mother, some 17 kms away, did some touring and sightseeing and had the sort of hours alone that is impossible to achieve at home.

After I’d taken a nap we went for dinner in the  Hotel ’t Speulderbos of the Bilderberg Group, where we were staying. The dinner we had enjoyed the evening before set a very high standard so we were intrigued to see what was on offer this evening.

Having discovered the Oklahoma smoker,  (my latest addition of “kitchen equipment” on my “If I won the lottery” list .. forget shoes!) we then had the terrible dilemma of everything looking so good that we didn’t know where to start.

Inside was laid out an extensive buffet of salads, hot and cold side dishes, most of the meat and fish of course coming from the smoker, some of the veggie dishes too (the courgettes and corn were amazing).

The outside tables were packed full when we arrived so we sat inside, but since we were late arrivals the crowed thinned out allowing me to take photographs of the food without disturbing other diners.

The only error I made was to leave the photographs of the desert buffet until later. The diners had made excellent inroads into these delicious specimens, I had only one photograph of anything “whole” and that was a new desert that was place there just as I came to take photos.

One small detail as the “Kiwi” in me did a double take, I thought I saw a Pavlova amongst the desserts! My heart soared! Then I realised it was actually a Baked Alaska, and that foamy- marshmallow-look was actually vanilla ice cream. My heart sank, but not for long because the Baked Alaska was divine too. The food was amazing, not only did I covert the Oklahoma smoker, Himself and I wanted to steal the chefs as well! It’s not often that I would return somewhere on the globe solely for the food, this is one of those places.

Himself and I agreed that we would not hesitate to return to this hotel, or any others in this same Bilderberg chain.The staff were friendly and helpful to a level that pleasantly surprised us, our later arrival and dinner the evening before was no problem, the one and only glitch was that I could not get my laptop on line, even multiple attempts by the willing and able staff at Reception were fruitless.

As you know, bloggers are lost without their beloved internet connections but actually Himself and I enjoyed our evening so much I didn’t miss it at all.  This was a meal much enjoyed and Himself and I have discovered a new “favourite” place to come for  treat. With locations throughout the Netherlands, who knows where we will be traveling to in the future. The chefs here are far above the standard that  Himself and I often experience, it’s safe to say that this was a delicious surprise!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Hotel ’t Speulderbos / Garderen – Veluwe / Hotel Bilderberg Group

June 18, 2017

I Discover The Oklahoma Smoker…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

After my day out at the 2016 Garderen Sand Sculpture I went to bed back at our hotel for a good rest.

Later after freshening up, Himself and I made our way to the restaurant for a late dinner.

The chef that evening was cooking outside on a huge beast of a barbeque, which I learned was called an Oklahoma smoker.

The helpful chef didn’t mind that I was interested and explained that the smoker works by stoking up the small firebox at the end of the unit.

There is a small duct that lets the heat from the firebox enter the main chamber, the airflow of which gives both upward and downward heat.

In fact, so much heat is generated that a second smoking chamber of food can be cooked there too.

The chef told me that he cooks things like steaks and hamburger patties in the first chamber, and is tonight cooking salmon in the second one. The smoker is constructed from a heavy metal material which is well insulated to keep the heat in and by stoking the fire in the firebox you can regulate the heat as you wish. Forget that I don’t even have a garden to put on in: as a foodie I am drooling over the thought of ever owning one of these!!!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Hotel ’t Speulderbos / Garderen – Veluwe / Hotel Bilderberg Group

June 17, 2017

Last Of The Sights, With A Rest In Sight…

My last post from the 2016 Garderen Sand Sculpture festival ends with a large rotating gate that takes me out of the sand sculpture area and back into the outer exhibition area. The last of the garden ornaments and decorative pieces catch my eye. Some are large like the wood burner, others tiny like the little gnomes in hammocks, on ladders and the like. After getting my last shots I wait outside the gates for Himself to come and pick me up. Back on the main road I get a few fleeting photographs of a beautiful statue as we make our way back to our hotel.
The use of a wheelchair has made this day possible, now I have earned a serious rest.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Garderen Sand Sculpture Festival

June 16, 2017

Garderen Apples: Slices Of Wit And Wisdom…

After a zillion photographs of sand sculptures we are now back to the beautiful fiberglass apples that are on display in the outside exhibition area. I’m almost at the end of the tour here and this is the last of the fiberglass apples posts. The theme is year is  “Dutch sayings” and the gnomes painted in Rien Poortvliet’s style are portrayed with just the right mixture of detail and humour. The first saying is:

Luiheid verarmt, arbeid verwarmt.” which translates as: “Laziness makes you poor and labour makes you warm“.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Het is van een oude man dat men wijsheid leren kan.”  is “it is from and old man that people learn wisdom.”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Een sneeuwbal en een lasterwoord groeien onder ‘t rollen voort.” this one translates as: “A snowball and a word of gossip grow while they roll on.”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Vliegt de zwaluw laag, verwacht een regenvlaag.” the saying is easy and literal: “If you see a swallow flying low, expect rain.”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Als man en vrouw tezamen kijven moet men op een afstand blijven.” this one says:  “If and a woman argue, stay away (keep out of it).”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Garderen Sand Sculpture Festival

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