And it slowly stopped raining….

by Rob on

It was a long day today. Last night I slept very badly. Before 3:00 am I waked up and haven’t slept after that anymore. Don’t ask me why. There was completely no reason for it. Guess it was just one of these nights…

So all day at work I was kinda tired. But surprisingly I managed to get a lot of work done. The day was long and it felt if the moment to go home didn’t want to come close. I made some long days this week, so it was fully justified to leave work in time. So no “Friday after work” beer at the company. A wise decision, because I think one beer could have made me crash completely….

I know it is not correct, but I had the feeling it was raining all day… Though from the moment I left for home it really was raining it constantly.

At home I took a shower and wanted to take a nap, but sadly I was over my sleep. So no desire to sleep anymore, but kinda feeling as a wreck. Got my self some Chines food as I hadn’t the courage to cook any dinner.
Closed the lamellae (or whatever they may be called in Engels) to shut out the lousy weather and watched a very nice DvD (the animation movie ‘9’).

After the movie I walked for a little up to my balcony and I noticed that the weather was a little better as before. With a beer in my hand I watched it slowly stop raining… Maybe a promise for the rest of the weekend… Anyway, time for me to catch up some sleep :).

A good weekend everyone!!!!

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A nice bicycle tour…

by Rob on

When I travel by train to my work I always pass an area between the city of Haarlem and the city of Amsterdam that always caught my attention. It looked very nice there. Good looking nature with lots of water. One thing always made me curious, this very long bridge for walkers and cyclists.

As the weather was nice today we decided to go there for a walk. But looking on a map we noticed that the area was rather big and that bicycles would be a better idea. Luckily we could borrow a bicycle for Marion (soon she will have her own bicycle here, much more handy).

So by train we travelled to the station “Haarlem Spaarnwoude” and from there we continue on our bicycles. A small ride took us directly to the bridge I was so curious about.

The bridge was indeed very long… and rather narrow, which gave a scary moment when some folks on mountains bikes coming from the opposite direction who wanted to pass us without taking back speed. So I placed my bicycle on the middle of the bridge forcing them to take back speed. They were angry, but better them angry then that they would cause an accident with their irresponsible behaviour. Just take a look at the bridge… even on normal speed one have to be careful when passing other people on the bridge.

After the bridge we found a very nice small town called “Haarlemmerliede”, which was basically one long road with houses to both sides of the roads and of course… a church! In front of the church there was a bulletin board. Look at the years mentioned on the bulletin board. This one was created in the year 1976, but it finds it origin many years before that (1454).
I really like small towns like this.

While riding on all kind of small roads through large meadows I noticed something that I already noticed back in Twente also. The number of cows is a lot less as it used to be and this not only because big farms keep them inside all day. But there are much more horses and sheep nowadays.
And not only that, the traditional Dutch cow-breeds that were bred for milk-production are replaced often by the more (not Dutch) meat breeds…

After some time we did find a very nice looking church called “De Stompe Toren” (“The Blunt Tower” ???).
It seems that already 2500 years before Christ there were already people living here. In 1065 the first chapel was built on this location. Around 1360 the church as it is now was built.
Nowadays the church is used for concerts and expositions.

After leaving the town of Spaarnwoude (where “De Stompe Toren” resides) we passed for a rather long time all kind of small roads. Saw some very nice sights.

On a sudden moment we noticed a signpost direction towards an area called “Houtrak”. The name sounded familiar to me. Not that I had been there before, but I read somewhere about it. So we decided to head that direction.
“De Houtrak” turns out to be a very large park-alike recreation area. Lots of ponds and forest-alike spots. Rather beautiful I have to say. It was a joy to ride through it.

After leaving “De Houtrak” we started to feel our legs and behinds. I think that we had done around 40 kilometres and we still needed to get to a rail road station to travel back to Heemskerk. After 30 minutes we reached a station and made our way back home.

I really enjoyed this bicycle trip. The weather was good. I saw beautiful sights and places I never had seen before. The company was more then perfect. So very well spend time.

By now Marion must be halfway to her home again. It was a very nice weekend…. and soon we will go on our holiday to France. I am looking forward to that.

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A simple romantic dinner

by Rob on

When Marion and I did our shopping today we had planned to make us a nice dinner tonight. We suddenly wondered why an nice romantic dinner always has to be about special and expensive food. We tried to it different this time… and with success to my idea.

We decided to go for dinner with “Shoarma” (often wrongly translated to Kebab).

Often for Shoarma over here in The Netherlands is pork used. But we did go for lamb, which is originally is used for Shoarma. We marinaded the fine cut lamb meat with mixture of cinnamon, garlic, turmeric, union, coriander, sea salt, paprika and cumin. And this all as fine powder (Miranda, thanks for the advices on this).

We baked the marinaded lamb meat in a hot skillet without oil or butter. At same time we baked potatoes slices with parsley.
We served two salads. One based on cucumber with olive oil, the other of a mixtures of different kinds of lettuce with a garlic dressing. Both with herbs as parsley, chive, red unions, black pepper and paprika.

Of course there we also some hot baked pita breads. There were three sauces: A garlic sauce, a whiskey cocktail sauce and a chilli sauce.

Serve out the table nicely. Add candles and a rose…. And there, a romantic dinner for two

It was delicious…

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