Local Heart, Global Soul

April 23, 2016

The Museum’s Museum Is Rather Cool…

Next  we go into the display section of  Het Haags Openbaar Vervoer Museum (the Hague Public Transport Museum). It’s more extensive that I thought and so interesting that even the kids lingered..

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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April 22, 2016

These Heavy Beasts Can Not Stop Easily, So Never Ever Mess With A Tram…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

We have arrived back from our tour of the city of the Hague on a historic tram.

The tour that we took is one of the shorter ones (it just happened to fit into our schedule at the time) and  not only are longer tours available but special trams are too.

There is a Tram especially equipped for parties (not surprisingly called the “Party Tram”) the booking of  which enables party goers to cruise the rails of the city as you celebrate your special day , anniversary etc.

I’ll wager too that if  a party host organised it right, this tram would also be able to organise  to drop off inebriated party guests off  at the end of the night closest to their homes so that they all got home safely.

Next is the Restaurant Tram,  a full sized more modern tram in black (rather than the other public transport colours) where you can book to dine as you glide around the rails. We have friends who really want to do this one day… if they like their experience then Himself and I might get to this one day too. Outside, next to the party tram there happens to be the “undercarriage” of another tram, just part of what must be under the floor of most trams… it looks terrifyingly heavy.

When I first came to the Netherlands I was warned to never, never, never try and run across the road right before a tram, that if I misjudged  and cut things too fine then at the very least my legs would be history. Trams are so heavy, even with the brakes on full they still take time to grind to a halt, always allow for that. It was advice that made me nervous around trams at first, after a few years of sighting some very mashed up cars, motorcycles and in one instance what little was left of a bicycle, (I never found out of the rider survived or not) I  developed a healthy respect for trams. Looking at this undercarriage of one, it gives you a sense of just how heavy these beasts are. In an around this Remise (Depot) there are many historic trams and busses, I assume that most of them could also be hired for weddings etc. Theselovely vehicles have beautiful and photogenic lines.  They please my photographic brain so I get busy with a photo-shoot…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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April 21, 2016

Reversing With Your Head Out The Window: The Rear Window !

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Continuing with yesterday’s post, last summer found us taking a ride in a historic tram.

In the last part of the trip we have just passed by the Hobbemaplein where the famous Haagse Markt can be found.

As the largest outdoor market in The Netherlands there has been a decades long tradition of how the look and feel of the market has been.

In the last year this changed with the city council decided that the open stalls should be replaced with covered ones, a move that infuriated stall holders.

The old system was a series of awnings that could be extended to exclude sun or rain, but the paths between and the area under the stalls was usually very wet every time it rained and customers risked standing in the wrong place if a wind gust caught an awning and dumped it’s freezing watery contents on passers-by.

Stall holders got snowed on as well as rained on and all in all it made rainy days at the market a lot less popular with patrons when compared with fine ones. I therefore assumed that restructuring the market so that each stall had a lock up area of it’s own and adding proper roofing to keep out the elements would be a popular move. Alas I was mistaken, apparently the stall holders, some of which run in generations of the same families did not want the atmosphere of the market destroyed, they took pride in the stand-in-all-weathers die hard way that things were done, and there was also some dispute about how the regeneration of the market would affect the prices of the trading licences.

For the customer it definitely seems cleaner and a lot less cold in winter, yes I do agree that the old ” feel” of the market will change, and whilst one side of me says that the old ways had a special charm, the other side of the argument is that no tradition can continue forever without requiring some refreshing of the way it operates from time to time to keep up with the times. Before my accident I loved to go to the market as often as I could, these days it’s Himself who makes semi regular visits.

I get some photographs of the market as the historic tram rounds the corner, but since the Market is only open on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays, and it was a Sunday when we made this trip, everything was closed and the market was deserted. The lack of activity did however give us a chance to see some of the renovation work taking place. We continue past the market and arrive back at Het Haags Openbaar Vervoer Museum (the Hague Public Transport Museum) where the kids are delighted that the tram driver unlocks the back window and a box at the rear of the tram, sticks his head out of the window and proceeds to reverse the tram back into the museum. Other visitors are already waiting the departure of the afternoon tram… let’s look around…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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April 13, 2016

Number Thirty-Seven Is Quite A Looker For Her Age…

Last summer we visited the Het Haags Openbaar Vervoer Museum (the Hague Public Transport Museum) with Little Mr. and two small neighbour friends. We have arrived just in time for our appointment with Tram Number 37. This is a historic tram that will shortly take us on tour of the city. Let’s take a look around this beautiful tram…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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The ticket conductor  clips the kids tickets…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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April 12, 2016

Avoid The Crowds And Go For The Tram During A Heatwave…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Summer holidays can be long when you are staying at home for weeks on end.

During the Summer of 2015 Himself had clients who wanted urgent work out to complete a long project, with an almost certain prospect of sending him a larger quantity of work to follow, and I had medical appointments, so with the exception of two weeks, we had a “staycation” at home in The Hague.

Little Mr enjoyed playing on the street with neighbourhood friends, Kiwi Daughter was working at the beach so one Sunday we decided to check out the Het Haags Openbaar Vervoer Museum (The Hague Public Transport Museum).

Their location is also the site of the Stichting Haags Bus Museum (The Hague Bus Museum Foundation) and Parallelweg where a large Remise (Depot) is located.

(Remise is pronounced ” ram ees”) and is where the trams and busses sleep at night when not on duty.

All of the various Remise buildings are roughly one hundred years old so they are beautiful buildings in their own right. Parking on the busy Parallelweg is impossible since it is the main thoroughfare to Hollandspoor train station a little further on, so we had to so a little bit of searching for a car park. The entrance to the museum is on the corner of Ter Borchstraat and Parallelweg. If you are able bodied then it’s far easier to take one of the many trams that stop at the halt directly opposite the museum. It was very hot the day we visited, an excellent choice because it was really quiet, most people were away for their summer holidays, at the beach etc so we completely avoided the crowds.

We had booked tickets for the historic tram ride in advance, so Himself and I with Little Mr, and a sister and brother from a neighbours family found our way to where we needed to be. We were early and the sun was belting down so the shade in the museum entrance was most welcome. The kids found it amusing to have their photographs taken with a maniquin of a tram conductor… I hope the real tram conductors had better fitting uniforms than this poor fellow…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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