Local Heart, Global Soul

November 25, 2016

Stepping Stones Of Cabbages Lead To Jail…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Sometimes your local history lesson can be found directly under your feet.

Such was the case when Little Mr and I visited Gouda to fulfil his wish to go to the Playtoday Lego shop.

Whilst he was only interested in the Lego, I cast my eye around me for the details that give a city it’s character and I didn’t have to look long.

Dotted around us and inlaid into the brickwork of this pedestrian shopping street, were some interesting round cast plaques.

I was puzzled when it became obvious that the first one had broccoli on it, then came all sorts of varieties of cabbages.

Little Mr. was impatient to leave and the plaques stretched a long way further down the street, further than I could manage, so it was a sort of “snap and go” sort of mission, but I got as many as I could in the immediate area.

There was text around some of the plaques and since they had been there along time, dirt from the street had built up, obscuring most of the images and making the text almost impossible to read. I enlarged the photographs on the computer to try and make out individual letters and words, trying to string together something that made sense. Suddenly we made out the word “Warmoesstenen” and it all started to make sense. Himself explained to me that “warremoes” was a very old fashioned Dutch term, and went and looked it up.

It turns out that the more modern word for it is “warmoes” and the text around the broccoli tells us that this ” is the term for a mash made out of vegetable scraps, usually food for prisoners.”

The other part of the word: “stenen” means stones (i.e. these inlaid plaque stones).The next text says: ” Na negeren van een bevel verstoren van de openbare orde of bedreigen van de baljuw volgde berechting” , which translates as: “After ignoring an order, disturbance of public order or threatening a baliff, the court would then pass sentance.”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Following image text: ” De uitspraak van het stedelijk gerecht leiden tot boetes, gevangenschap, verbanning of tot de galg“,  which means: “The decision of the city court results in fines, imprisonment, exile / deportation or the gallows”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Around the next plaque the words are all for vegetable and cabbage types: “spruit” (sprouts), “koolrabi” (kohlrabi, a.k.a. turnip cabbage), “savooi” (savoy), “radijs” (radish), “paksoi” (bok choi), “koolraap” (swede / swedish turnip), “rammenas” (winter radish), “spitskool” (conical cabbage), “raap” (turnip / swede), “chinese kool” pronounced “shin-A’s-coal” (chinese cabbage) and “raapstelen” (turnip tops).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Then I discovered some information about who has placed these here: “De warremoesstenen zijn een schenking van het 100 jarige Goudse Vuurvast NV aan de gemente Gouda”.The “warremoes” stones are a gift from the “Gouda Vuurvast Company to the municipality of Gouda (to mark the occasion of Vuurvast’s 100 year centenary).”

(Side note from Kiwi: The Vuurvast company makes refractory materials that keeps their strength under high temperature. Their products are used in the iron, steel and glass industries to make molds and crucibles and also to make deflectors for rocket launch structures). Once I knew the name of the company who made and gifted these stones I also found the following information (links as usual at the bottom of my post.) The illustration on this stone is Vuurvast’s (literally: “fire fast”) company logo.

The sites were in Dutch so I translated for you:” Warmoes stones: Up until 1845 the landscape of the Lange Tiendeweg in Gouda was dominated by the Warmoespoort, a bridge with in-built cell space for prisoners.The bridge was named after the remains of cabbage leaves that was the prisoners food. One hundred “stepping stones” set into the Long Tiendeweg have been used to build a picture of this historical past near the center of Gouda.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The following stone appears to never have had text on it because the image runs completely off the edges. If the Vuurvast Company celebrated it’s 100th Centenary in 2009 then these have been here for seven years now, hence the build up of grime.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The next text  around the sprouts consists of random words: “vlooken” (to swear), “smijten” (to chuck / to throw), “razen” (furious / rage), “spuwen” (to spit / old fashioned form of  the modern word “spugen” = to spit), “schelden” (scold), “tieren” (rant).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

De cipier kreeg 35 cent per arrestant voor de voeding en genoot een inkomen van 75 guilden per jaar.” (The jailer received 35 cents per prisoner for food and enjoyed an income of 75 gulden per year).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Brassicaceae: brassica campestris var pekinensis (kruisbloemenfamilie: Chinese kool)” (Brassicaceae: brassica campestris from pekinensis (cabbage family: Chinese cabbage)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Bij inschrijving voor afbraak te verkoopen: de TIENDWEGSPOORT. aan het einde van den Langen Tiendeweg.” (Selling upon demolition, register at the Tiendweg gate, end of the Long Tiendeweg.) In the center it says: ” OPENBARE VERKOOPING 20 November 1854“, (PUBLIC SALE 20 November 1854)
… which makes no sense to me, especially the date! It appears then that maybe these were only meant to be temporary and that people could register to buy them later… but the date is 1854 …which makes us all just a tad late!

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Here are some of the other stones (duplicate in image to the above, so that you can see the wear and tear…)

(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)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Gouda Vuurvast Services

More about the history of Gouda Vuurvast (Note:Dutch language only)
 The Gouda “Warmoes” Stones.

 

November 24, 2016

Bikes Everywhere … And They Start ’em Young.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Sunday afternoon in Gouda is like many places around the Netherlands, people go out on their bikes.

For many it’s not just a method for getting from “A” to “B”, but a fun way to see the country, get exercise and get together with friends.

A few steps down from the Lego shop is an ice-cream shop, so  once Little Mr. and I were finished in the great: “Who’s going to win the next Lego building competition” debate, we joined the queue for an ice-cream.

As a rule Dutch shops are not open on Sundays.

Until around the early 2000’s, none were, ever, but around that time supermarkets started opening up trading hours.

Even now, not every supermarket brand opens, and most other shops still don’t.

Places like ice-cream parlors and restaurants are open Sunday’s but they have never fallen into the “nine to five” business bracket. I noticed that many of the ice-cream shop customers were weekend cyclists, so this impromptu shot shows the kind of cyclist I mean, not the twenty-something racing cyclist (although they certainly exist) rather someone who is out for a leisurely Sunday cycle of anywhere between 40 and 80 kms.

Just a little way down the same street is an “Oma” (Grandma) bike, good solid construction for surviving riding over streets paved with bricks, a back carrier perfect for the supporting shopping, or a friend, and popular in recent years: a solid front rack for bringing handbags, briefcases and school bags back and forth from where needed. It may not be clear from the angle of my Oma fiets (bike) photograph, but it’s chained to the child’ bike next to it too, and in the Netherlands there are bike’s everywhere, …and they start ’em young.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

November 23, 2016

There Is No Age Limit On Fun, … Or Wagers.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Before we leave the “Playtoday” Lego shop in Gouda I am keen to take a look at some of the detailed models in the shop.

Parked inside large perspex display cabinet these display pieces are safe from prying little fingers but make photography tricky, so a few of my shots have lighting issues.

Little Mr. and I probably spent rather too long excitedly pointing out to one another some of the especially well done details that we saw to one another but there is no age limit to having fun is there?

In general, each of us liked different things but share a love of a “good build” and humorous details.

We agreed that the use of tiny, clear round bricks to represent the breaking of waves around a wind sailor or a jetty was a masterful move,  he loved the balloon “hovering” over the island, I loved the jewel detail in the pirate island treasure chest and we both grinned when we saw a crab on the roof of a beach-front property.

I loved building things a a kid and was disappointed that Kiwi Daughter never looked twice at Lego, so my son’s delight is also my own, I am often to be found being the Chief Lego “sorter outer-er”, combing through heaps to find a piece that he needs to make his next project complete.

It gives us a chance to chat about stuff too, and what he doesn’t know is that I am secretly trying to learn some of the construction tricks of the trade.

Why? the answer is simple. I looked at a few of the entries in the competition display cabinet and said ” I could do that!” which was met with horrified, wide eyed disapproving stares from Little Mr. “Not cool“… he declared later in the car, “that was sooo embarrassing“.

The problem is that he doesn’t think I am anywhere near being able to enter any competition. Oh yeah?  In fact he believes so strongly that I can’t that he has wagered me Euro 10,– of his pocket money that I win. Yes,  of course he stands to gain the same from me if I can’t.  Entries are once per year, at the beginning of the 2017 summer school holidays. I have to start thinking about a topic and a build that will blow everyone out of the water. Hmmm… Thinking cap would be great… if I had thoughts. I have time. Watch this space.

(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)

(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)

November 22, 2016

There’s Profit In Inspiration And Building Dreams…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The “Playtoday” Lego shop in Gouda is probably one of the places closest to heaven as far as Little Mr is concerned.

They are open one Sunday in the month, which is how we found ourselves there exactly as the doors were opened, and with Little Mr chomping at the bit to give the place a full check over.

The “pick-and-mix” brick wall drew him first, but it wasn’t long before he discovered the room out the back where Lego was laid out on tables for people to build with.

There are also display cabinets containing competition entry models, which prompted much debate between the two of us about which we thought was the best.

I love the models but the Lego figure wall decorations are one of my favourite things there too.

All around us was Lego, Lego and more Lego, and once again I have to give credit to a company that not only makes money from the wishes of kids but also inspires so much creativity and zeal from the product they sell.

I took these photographs in the first fifteen minutes we were inside, after that parents started to arrive, pulled in by their offspring. It just goes to prove that the is a profit to be made in inspiration and in building dreams.

(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)

(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)

 

 

November 21, 2016

Building On A Summer Time Wish…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

My son is a die hard Lego fanatic.

Not only is it an obsession, he has built up an encyclopedic knowledge  about which bricks belong to which sets,  which parts are often used together,  tips and tricks for all sorts of building and the best prices for pieces and sets.

It’s true that his “wish list” is so long that we’d need to be billionaires to accommodate it and that his dreams for Lego sets outweigh his pocket money, so he has also become a keen budgeter and bargain hunter.

This summer each of our children were promised a weekend activity that they choose themselves. Little Mr spent a long time thinking about it before deciding to ask for a visit to a Lego shop in Gouda.

What he really wanted was t visit somewhere that had a Lego “wall” where individual bricks could be purchased, Gouda met the criteria and he was keen to go.

Himself’s work schedule didn’t allow for a weekday visit but Little Mr found out that one shop was open every third Sunday in the month,  which is how we ended up at the “Playtoday” shop on a little street near the centre of Gouda.

(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)

 

 

November 20, 2016

Gouda Wheels In The Air…

Filed under: Architectural Detail,ART,Gouda,Objet d'art,PHOTOGRAPHY,THE NETHERLANDS — kiwidutch @ 1:00 am
Tags: ,

The first thought that usually springs to mind when anyone mentions the word “Gouda” is “cheese“.  Of course this Dutch city has more famous things to boast about too, but none can top cheese when it comes to recognition around the globe. Naturally too the “cheese theme” proliferates around the city, after all it’s a tourist town too,  and one of the quirky ways that it’s been incorporated into everyday life is in the street decorations. Colourful rounds in the forms of cheese (the correct term for them is a “wheel” of cheese) are suspended over the streets and give a wonderful extension to the theme that is light hearted and whimsical. Some might even go as far as to say that they are also tasteful… but I assure you the real Gouda wheels are far tastier.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

November 17, 2016

Heraldic Detail That’s Right Up My Street…

During the summer, Himself, Little Mr and I enjoyed a Sunday trip to Gouda. During our visit I came across a beautiful door that had a detailed and colorful coat of arms above it. The decoration is superb, the detail… literally right up my street. Naturally I got out my camera and got a few photographs.

(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)

 

 

November 30, 2014

The Water We Play With And Then Throw Away…

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

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Today’s post is a yet another illustration of something else very typically Dutch: the aqueduct.

The national stereotype  of a country filled with canals is there for a reason, because the country is filled almost end to end with canals and waterways of all shapes and sizes.

Most people of course know about the famous Dutch sea defences, that’s lesser known is that in a country that is largely below sea level and thus with a water table that’s higher than the surrounding land, that it’s necessary to continually pump water off the land twenty four hours a day, three hundred and sixty five days of the year. And the extra day in Leap years.

There’s an entire Government department dedicated to water management. During storms, cloud bursts and long periods of rain, teams of experts monitor water levels around the country.

If it rains hard in the upper reaches of the Rhine River in Germany and flooding starts, all that water has to go somewhere, and that somewhere is going to to be further down-stream in The Netherlands. Every single Low tide, water that has been pumped off the land is emptied into the sea.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The Netherlands is like a little boat with a slow leak that’s always requires bailing.  That’s why  twice a year we have a problem with the high Spring and Autumn tides. If these occur at the same time as large storms the sea level will be so high a low tide that the pumping out of the stored land water can not take place.

Many of the Dutch waterways are also used as commercial and recreational highways.  I’ve lost count of the amount of times in the last twenty years I’ve sat at a car at red light with the roadway in front of me tilted up to allow sailing vessels to go by. Sometimes though, when the road concerned is a motorway, a better solution than a tilting bridge has to be found, and this alternative is the aqueduct. This is basically where the canal goes over the road, ( or the road goes under the canal, take your pick) not a drinking water canal as per aqueducts of Roman times, but to carry  boat traffic. The one in my photographs is in Gouda (Yes, where the famous cheese comes from).

Make no mistake though, these canals are also very expensive feats of engineering and are not just there to benefit the whims of recreational boaties, the water in them is also very conveniently some of the water extracted from the land and is on it’s way to the sea to be pumped out when the next low tide comes around.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

 

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