Local Heart, Global Soul

December 16, 2017

Loveren’s Famous Door Ticked Off The List…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

After a few wrong turns into small roads, Himself and I find ourselves in the small village that we have been looking for.

It’s still one of the “enclaves” but is one of the plots of land that is outside Baarle Nassau / Baarle-Hertog.

The main reason we are here is to find the an image that we have seen on many of the postcards around Baarle.

It is a door that has the border going through it but this one is quite a lovely building in it’s own right.

We felt that since we were so close to Baarle we just had to tick it off our list and see it for ourselves.

For some reason this house in the enclave of Loveren has two separate house numbers, but it’s possible that it might be for efficiency when it comes to postal delivery.

But probably knowing the history of this place, a more complicated reason because nothing seems simple where it comes to border divisions in this part of the world.

(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)

December 15, 2017

They Seem To Have Their Heads In The Clouds…

Filed under: BELGIUM,PHOTOGRAPHY,Quirky Sights — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

It seems to be my lucky day for new finds, wierd and wonderful sights. Driving through just a few short kilometres of Belgium on our way back to the area around Baarle-Nassau / Baarle-Hertog, I come accross one of the strangest things I have ever seen.

I mean a real, mouth open “what the heck is going on here?” kind of moment.

Even looking at the photographs later on I still can’t even begin to answer this question.

This is what I looked up to see on the roof of somebody’s home.

I was keeping an eye out for decorative weather vanes to photograph, but this doesn’t appear to be one at all, then again, what on earth is it?

Does a metorologist live here perhaps?

Do the inhabitants have their heads in the clouds? or walk around on cloud nine? There has to be some sort of story behind this getting made. A joke? A pun? So many questions. I took several photographs as we passed by, hoping to see something that might solve this mystery. I still have no clue at all.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

December 14, 2017

When Your Bread Leaps Out At You…

Filed under: BELGIUM,FOOD,PHOTOGRAPHY — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The Belgium supermarket just a few kilometers from Baarle-Nassau / Baarle-Hertog, has come up with a third and final surprise.

Still in the bakery section where I found the bread slicing machines of yeterday’s post, I now find another difference to Dutch supermarkets.

There are individual cabinets for the various bread loaves, Ok, a few Dutch supermarkets have this but we have seen it more often in Germany.

The ones we have seen before however are just the sort where there is a row of (usually perspex) containers, and they have drop-down (or occasionally lift-up) doors so that you can reach the items inside.

This one goes a leap further because each section extends out quite a distance, that said I have not quite figured out why this would be a bigger advantage over the “flat” wall systems we already know.

I can only guess at two reasons: it would be easier for staff to clean inside the cabinets and if two customers wanted access to the same cabinet then they could take a side each and get what they want without waiting. there are probably more reasons that I haven’t twigged to yet, but this style of bakery cabinet is yet another ‘first” that we have seen here. I know… it’s the small things that get me excited, but I prefer to think of it as: a new discovery is a new discovery no matter how big it is.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

December 13, 2017

The Best Thing Since Sliced Bread? …

Filed under: BELGIUM,FOOD,PHOTOGRAPHY,Quirky Sights — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Still inside the supermarket of yesterday’s post I now see a second thing I have never seen before: a machine where customers can slice their own bread.

A different form of the slicer is less unusual, most Dutch barkeries have them, you select your whole loaf and if you don’t want to slice it yourself at home, then you ask the bakery staff to cut it for you on the machine behind the counter.

What is completely different about these two machines is that customers slice their bread themselves: it even has adjustments where you can choose various thicknesses, you choose which setting you want, slice the loaf and then the bag slips over the metal bar that the bread is standing on and everything slides into the bag in one smooth go.

Perfect! I love this idea, the fact that there are two machines and not one must also mean that these get plenty of use.

It would also save time, no need to stand in a queue waiting to have your bread sliced. I think that the main reason bread is only sliced at point of sale is: some people prefer to cut their loaf at home, others not so this saves having two uncut when maybe one customer wants cut the other not, and the uncut bread stay fresher for longer since less air gets around the bread to dry it out. If a household uses less bread they may prefer to slice it as they need it. It’s a way to save waste too, you stock the bread in a form where it can be sold either way then let the customer choose their preference.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

December 12, 2017

Supermarket Traffic Lights…

Filed under: BAARLE Hertog/Nassau,BELGIUM,PHOTOGRAPHY,Quirky Sights — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: , ,

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Whenever Himself and I cross borders into a different country, we are agreed on one shopping destination: the local supermarket so that we can avail ourselves of some of that countries culinary delights.

This was therefore on our wish list when we went to Baarle-Nassau / Baarle-Hertog earlier in the year.

This should be easy since Baarle-Hertog is Belgian territory inside the Netherlands, they should have a supermarket, right? Wrong.

We looked but saw only Dutch supermarket names, so we asked and were greeted with a laugh and the answer: “A Belgian supermarket in Baarle-Hertog? … it would go out of business rather quickly … the Dutch supermarket prices are far better than the Belgian ones, everyone on the other side of the border comes here to Baarle to do their weekly grocery shopping!

It’s logical of course, and very Flemish! (but then, who doesn’t like a bargain?). Luckily whilst en route to our next destination we found that we had crossed the border by accident (yes, lost again) and passed this supermarket. Knowing that it’s hard to even find a petrol station or a bakery open on a Sunday in Belgium and that shops would be shutting earlier than usual on the Saturday afternoon, we said OK, let’s get in there quick before they start shutting up shop for the day.

This is the first thing that greeted once past the supermarket trolley collection area by the entrance; swing doors that lit up like traffic signals! The reason is simple: this is both the entrance and exit door and this is a good way to direct customers with their trolleys coming in and out. Ingenious!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

December 11, 2017

Architectural Detail All Over Town…

Himself and I continue our car tour of the area around Baarle-Nassau / Baarle-Hertog. I take lots of photographs for my “architectural detail” archive files.

(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)

December 10, 2017

Charm, Character And Differences…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

During our driving tour around the district of Baarle-Nassau / Baarle-Hertog, I spotted quite a few interesting looking churches.

Traffic in some areas prevented us pulling over so that I could get some more agreeable compositions, so I did my best from out of the window.

A strange sort of canopy adorned the bottom section of one of the town churches, I can’t quite make out if it’s temporary and there whilst renovations are done or if it’s been added to the tower as a permanent safety measure (falling bits??).

It certainly makes for an interesting and memorable feature.

The brickwork and styles of the churches I saw were many and varied: the steeples different and each with a charm and character of their own.

(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)

December 9, 2017

Lazy Sight-seeing Around The District…

After doing a small “tour” of Baarle-Nassau / Baarle-Hertog with the wheelchair, it was time to take a rest and take a look around the district by car. The weather was also rather threatening so it was nice to sit comfortably and sight-see in comfort, (read “lazily”)…

(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)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

December 8, 2017

Oh, And Just A Little Mayonnaise Please…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Any New Zealander will tell you that when you want something to put onto fries, nothing beats good old “Watties” (brand) tomato sauce.

Not just any tomato sauce, it has to be Watties.

You can taste the difference of substitutes a kilometre away, and the absence of it in Europe is the reason I would rather eat fries with just a little salt than anything else.

Ask any born and bred Dutch person though and you will get the answer for their preferred topping in a nano-second: mayonnaise. In fact for many Dutch, anything except mayonnaise is almost unthinkable.

After a busy morning touring Baarle-Nassau / Baarle-Hertog, Himself suggested some fries for lunch.

He was hungry, after all all I have to do is sit in the wheelchair and take photographs, he’s the one doing the pushing.

After twenty-three years of marriage I know he’s a big fan of mayonnaise but nothing quite prepared me for the sight that greeted me when he exited the shop with this. I was about to say “this monstrosity” but since we were sharing and I was getting the mayo-free ones from the bottom I thought I better not make too much fuss over how gross I thought this looked. Needless to say ALL of the mayonnaise was for him. Good thing he’s in training for a marathon, you’d need to after a lunch like this.

December 7, 2017

Two Grand Houses…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Early this year Himself and I took a weekend away for two and came to visit Baarle-Nassau / Baarle-Hertog in the south of the Netherlands.

After finding several former railways buildings and the “Het Bels Lijntje” (The Belgian Line), a former railway line turned cycle path, we continue a little further on, seeing an interesting building ahead.

Actually there are two, opposite each other, one has an information plaque that says:

Pastoor de Katerstraat’, “dit neo-renaissance woonhuis is gebouwd in 1915” (This neo-renaissance residential home was built in 1915).

The other building I had a strange idea that it had been a doctors residence, but now looking through my notes I can’t quite see how I came to that conclusion.

Never one to be missing a photo opportunity when it comes to architectural detail, I try and zoom in.

(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)

Further up the same street… (we didn’t go further, this was the outermost point we managed in this direction).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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