I’m at the end of my posts from the city of Maastricht, we have by no means seen or done everything, but for our trip three years ago certainly wet our appetite for a return visit some time in the future. But just because we are finished in the actual city, it doesn’t mean we are yet done with Limburg… Let’s enjoy the last vistas from around this beautiful city…
September 27, 2015
September 26, 2015
September 25, 2015
Following yesterday’s post, there is detail galore, enough for several posts…so, … Enjoy!
September 24, 2015
In many of my earlier Maastricht posts, I mentioned that this is one of the oldest cities in the Netherlands and that there is detail enough to keep a photographer busy for months. In my next series of posts I’m going to look at more of this detail… the tiny bits of architectural detail that most people are in too much of a hurry to look at, or have grown up with so many old buildings that they just don’t see the detail any more.
September 23, 2015
Regular readers know that I have a fascination with the strangest of things… ordinary, every day things, like doors, windows, letter boxes, drain covers and grills. Yes! It’s another drain cover post! Here in Maastricht I found not just one beautiful, round, metal beauty, but three! Lovers of pattern and drain covers … enjoy!!!
September 22, 2015
Three years ago, Family Kiwidutch were in the Limburg city of Maastricht and chanced upon a large Police Day complete with demonstrations and the chance of close up looks vehicles.
Whilst talking to some very friendly police officers we became away that a massive crowd was building on the road around the square about fifty meters behind us.
There was music from a band and a lot of cheering, and although we looked in that direction, Little Mr. was having so much fun in the police jeep, we didn’t go over to investigate.
It sounded very much like a parade of some kind and there was a lot of cheering, but it was also easy to see that the crowd was at least five or six deep.
None of us felt like trying to get a view at what ever was going on, from the very back of the crowd. The thought of pushing through to the front, so that the kids could see appealed even less, so we left them to what-ever was going on there and turned back to talking about cane woven riot shields… per yesterday’s post. After all of the commotion had passed, and we headed back towards the car parking building, we happened to pass some men I’d seen earlier, directing traffic away from where the parade had come from, and since I had stopped to rest whilst Himself bought the car around to where I was, I asked several of the guys what had been going on earlier.
To our dismay this had not just been “any” parade, that we had missed, this parade had included the cast from the TV show “Flikken Maastricht“, and they had been driven by in classic cars… almost under our noses. Now the penny drops as to why there were so many people, why the crowd had gone crazy, the bands, the cheering, all the noise, and of course now I realized what the “Flikken Maastricht” reference meant from earlier in the day.
Little Mr didn’t know if he should be devastated to have missed a personal sighting of some of his TV hero’s or delighted to have chatted uninterrupted to some “real live” policemen. In the end, he was delighted with his day, and we were all pleased with the day. Today’s photographs are of the square taken at other times during the trip, around the town and of Sint Jan’s Kerk and it’s towering red tower that stands next to it’s fellow church neighbour: Basilica of Saint Servatius. The central city has so much to see… It’s always better to concentrate on what you did and not what you missed…
September 21, 2015
After our boat tour on the river Maas, we follow the crowds streaming towards the large town square.
More accurately we find ourselves lagging behind because so many people overtook us, so we decided that in order to avoid the crush of people we would take the slightly longer way through some of the smaller streets. There were still plenty of people around when we arrived in the square, surprised to find that the police were putting on a display of all sorts of vehicles and that disappointingly, we have just missed a large display where officers role played catching criminals with police dogs, dealing with an angry demonstration and other various action events.
Little Mr. was at first disappointed to hear that he had missed the action but luckily he was still so full of excitement about our ringside seats to the police show on the water that he didn’t seem to mind as much as we had thought he might.The other massive distraction was the presence of large police vehicles that the public could go inside (Himself and Little Mr. went in and tried out one of the prisoner cells in the police bus for instance). We also saw lots of policemen on (push) bikes… this is the Netherlands after all, and bicycles are brilliant if you have to give chase in narrow winding streets.
Later he spied a sort of jeep used when riot police or special police are needed and Little Mr. got to sit in the driver’s seat, and then in the back where he tried out a riot shield for size. We were rather surprised that the basis of the shield are still old fashioned woven canes, and when we asked the friendly policemen nearby why, he told us that so far no modern materials have proved more lightweight, shock resistant and flexible as these older version shields have so they keep making them the old way. We might have missed the bulk of the show, in fact many of the stalls were packing up but Little Mr. was so over the moon with what he had managed to see that none of the things he had missed mattered.
September 20, 2015
Three years ago we visited the city of Maastricht in the Dutch province of Limburg and whilst taking tourist boat ride down the river we were fortunate enough to get ringside seats to a display on the water, put on by local police and fire departments.
We did see a lot of people on the riverbank and on the bridges nearby, but it didn’t really sink in just how many people there were until the tour boat returned to the dock, and at this point we were really curious about what they were all here for.
Was it just for the display on the river?
When I spot someone with a TV station type camera it dawns on me that there is something more going on that Family Kiwidutch obviously don’t know about.
I stop and ask a lady why she is here, (translated) she replied “to see Flikken Maastricht“. Hmmm, but what does that mean? I know of course that “Flikken Maastricht” is a really popular Dutch cop TV crime drama series that, as the name of the series suggests is filmed in and around Maastricht, but I still can’t make the connection between the TV series and why all of these people are here. We make our way back towards the large town square… Himself left our car in a car parking building there earlier and my back is hurting after all this sitting, so I have to loosen it up by walking a bit. That’s how we start following the crowd back towards the center…
September 19, 2015
Whilst on the return section of our river boat trip in the Maas river in Maastricht, we passed by some sort of celebration taking place in a large ornate building. At first we were certain that it was probably a wedding, but closer scrutiny of the photographs later made us doubt this. We see plenty of smartly dressed people but no obvious bride or groom so my mind raced back to the smartly dressed group of young people we saw earlier, the ones who were carrying the long pole that had the garland of flowers on it. Might this be one such gathering? It might well be…
September 18, 2015
When Family Kiwidutch visited Maastricht three years ago, we happened to take an organised boat tour on the River Maas at exactly the same moment that a demonstration of various Police water craft was taking place.
There were life saving boats, police divers, and all manager of craft, busy acting out a scenario where they were “chasing” another boat in a mock up of what it’s like to be chasing “the bad guys” or “doing a real rescue”. (Little Mr’s words) and it was all high action and drama.
Up until then this boat trip was a fairly ho-hum sort of thing, he was kind of having fun but only mildly. Now he was excited, animated and totally exhilarated, complete with running commentary even though it was obvious to everyone else watching that “that boat is going to the right, now he’s swerving, now he’s going even faster…” etc.
I noticed lots of smiles appearing on the faces of the adults around us at the rear of the boat, his complete and utter happiness was certainly infectious. When we booked this trip we had no clue that we would turn out to have some of the best seats in the house to this river display.
Of course Little Mr’s knowledge of every. single. vehicle. in the emergency services also resulted in a loud breathless monologue that detailed it all to everyone nearby… his joy and enthusiasm was lovely to see and it was really nice that the other passengers enjoyed his enthusiasm with my little dude and no one told him to be quiet… this was just a little innocent kid being totally enthused by little innocent kid stuff.
The only downside was that our ringside seat was moving, our own tour boat wasn’t part of the display, just an unexpected spectator to it… so after awhile we slipped further and further away from the mad rush of action. There must have been a break whilst we were further up the river however because there were still some smaller police boats busy on the water on the return journey.
Later on I was pestered repeatedly with questions about if I got good shots of everything that had been going on… clearly it was very important not to have missed anything. Even if this boat tour is rather less than dramatic and doesn’t offer a lot, especially when compared with other boat trips I have been on, for one (then) seven year old boy, it was the bees knees and had suddenly become one of the highlights of the trip. Just such a pity that the additional action could not be laid on every boat trip…
A huge Thank You too to the lady to waved back when Little Mr waved… it made his day !