At the beach (Or: Cocktail workshops)

Recently the company I work for met at the Scheveningen beach for the annual summer party. I signed up Marco and myself for the cocktail workshop. Here’s a look at the White Russian that I made:

I made that! 🙂 Love the layers.

There were some no-shows at the party, so everyone was able to do another cocktail in the second workshop. In that one, Marco and I made “the Split”, which is named after a Dutch popsicle. That cocktail was with likeur 43, orange juice, yoghurt likeur and ice cubes.

But nothing beats my White Russian!

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Lady on the bench (Or: Statue in The Hague)

Not far from the Peace Palace you can find a lady sitting on a bench, watching the world go by. And not just any lady, but Anna Pavlovna of Russia, Queen Consort to the Netherlands back in the 18th century. She married Willam the II in 1816 and had five children. If you read the Wikipedia page you’ll notice how odd it is to have a statue here – apparently she wasn’t a fan of the Netherlands and preferred instead to be in what is now Belgium (or better yet, Russia). But okay, the statue itself is still very beautiful.

A bit dusty, but a very pretty statue. Added in 1999 by the Russian architect Alexander Taratynov.

A bit further along the path you come across the Peace Palace. I had a bit of luck that day in terms of weather – no grey skies that day. (Unlike today!)

Blue, blue, and a bit of red flowers…
Categories: Culture, The Hague | Tags: , | 2 Comments

New Papa John’s location (Or: More pizza by The Fred)

“The Fred” or De Fred is a neighborhood in The Hague, a shortening of the street name Frederik Hendriklaan, where the heart of the neighborhood can be found.

Last Monday a new Papa John’s pizza location opened on The Fred. It’s the first one in The Hague, although there are already locations in nearby Delft and Zoetermeer. It’s originally from the United States.

Waiting in line for free pizza

And of course (like what Dunkin’ Donuts does with new locations) the first 100 visitors that day received a free pizza.

“Free pizza for the first 100 visitors — we ❤ The Hague”

I’m actually not much of a fan of Papa John’s pizza, although admittedly I haven’t had any in years. I’m more of a thick pizza/thick crust person. But some of my friends do like it, so to each their own!

Categories: Everyday purchases, Food, The Hague | Tags: | Leave a comment

Who needs 112? (Or: Country-wide malfunction by emergency services)

First off, 112 is the emergency number in the Netherlands just like 911 is the emergency number in the US. And guess what? Right now there’s a malfunction by one of the telephone carriers in the Netherlands making it impossible to dial 112 or the non-emergency police number 0900-8844.

Around 17:20 they sent out an NL-Alert saying that the was a country-wide malfunction with the telephone and that we should go to the nearest fire department or police station in an emergency. That’s it – yikes. A bit confusing, since there was nothing about the issues with the 112 number. Also not good? Marco I received the alert around 18:10, almost an hour after it was originally sent.

However a few minutes later Marco and I received an NL-Alert with better information:

Interesting things to note here:

  • this time they said 112 was having issues – that’s better.
  • the end of the message is translated in English. Nice.
  • You know you’re catching up with technology when they are also able to give a WhatsApp number. (Correction: the WhatsApp number they sent was wrong. Eek! They sent out a third NL-Alert with the new number 06-10000011)
  • You can also use Twitter to contact the police in general.

Not mentioned above, but the police also said they are also sending all available police officers out into the streets to make their presence more noticeable so that citizens have alternative means of reporting issues.

Read more here:

From the police: “Due to technical malfunctions the emergency number 112 and the service number 0900-8844 (not for emergencies) cannot be reached at this moment. There are alternative telephone numbers available. For 112 call 088-66 28 240, for 0900-8844 call 088-96 59 630”.

Kind of crazy, though, that the emergency phone system can be brought down at all. I expect a thorough investigation at some point…

Edit: mostly fixed around 20:00, but the numbers the police gave out will be usable for now.

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It’s trying to be summer in Rijswijk (Or: Ever-changing weather)

A few weeks back I visited the shopping center In de Bogaard in Rijswijk, a city not far from The Hague. Along the way I took a few photographs of whatever caught my eye. Here are two of my favorites:

Red roses… but can you spot the ladybug on the leaf?

The last few weeks have seen weather change hour by hour. Last Sunday we had temperatures in the high 80s (F). And there have been days where it rained more often than not, with a few hours where the skies just opened up and rain came pouring down. A few days of high winds, where you wonder if it might just be possible that you blow away.

LIMOR social services building in Rijswijk

This building in the image isn’t far from Rijswijk Centraal, the main train station in the city. It’s been underground since 1996.

Fun fact: if you look up the building on Google Maps and then use Street View, some of the images you see are of the completed building whereas some of the images are of the building while it was under construction. Kind of eerie to be able to flip back and forth!

Categories: Rijswijk | Tags: , | Leave a comment

Rolled up ice cream (Or: Rrrollend food truck festival)

It’s that time of year again! The Rrrollend food truck festival has returned to The Hague. Today was the last day, although they will be back at Lange Voorhout from August 9th to the 11th.

The highlight of this excursion this time around was the rolled up ice cream (Wikipedia), which I have never had before. The food truck was manned by a team out of Rotterdam (Facebook). It is a semi-solid ice cream made of cream, milk and sugar. The trick is that it is placed on a cold surface (chilled to -20 degrees) while it is being worked on. Check out this photo from the Wikipedia page:

Photo from Wikipedia user Thomson200 

Once frozen, you can roll up the ice cream as shown above.

Our mango mix rolled up ice cream from Friday
Today’s forest fruit rolled up ice cream. The rolling up didn’t go as well, but it was just as delicious!
Categories: Food, The Hague | Tags: , | 2 Comments

European elections 2019 (Or: Time to vote)

Well, time for Dutchies to vote that is. As an expat, I can’t vote. Every five years, European elections are held for the European parliament. 751 seats, of which 26 are for the Netherlands; 29 after UK leaves the EU.

Check out how long the candidate list is (!):

Voting list taped up at The Hague city hall

Voters receive the same list, just a bit smaller (but not that much smaller – it’s still almost impossible to fold back up!)

Only UK and the Netherlands vote today. The rest from the European lands vote tomorrow or in the weekend. Therefore official results won’t be announced until Sunday evening, although exit polls started coming in a few minutes ago. Should be interesting…

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Delft blauw in The Hague (Or: Mini statues)

The Delft blauw craze will never quite go away. Recently I was visiting Frederik Hendriklaan or the Fred, as the locals call it. I stepped inside Kaatje aan de Rein (Facebook page), a gift shop.

I had to think of my mother-in-law when I spotted these tiny creatures, made in the style of Delft blauw:

They are similar to the two playing cats she purchased at the Gemeentemuseum, a local museum here in The Hague. You can see a picture of the two cats here.

Categories: Everyday purchases, Shopping | Tags: | 2 Comments

Day of Remembrance (Or: Jewish monument of The Hague)

Today was a Holocaust Day of Remembrance in The Hague for the Jewish population. There was a small ceremony held in the city centre in the afternoon to remember those who were lost during WWII.

The Jewish monument in The Hague – at Rabbijn Maarsenplein, a Jewish neighborhood prior to WWII

You can read more about the monument at the official website (nl | en). Also something interesting: some of the flowers came from various embassies, including Germany, Austria, and Israel. Others came from citizens.

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Flowers in the sun (Or: A spring day)

Here are a few more photos from last weekend’s gorgeous sun:

The shape of the purple-pink flowers is especially eye-catching.
These bright red flowers are along the water by the Buitenhof
Flowers in the foreground, monument to Prince Bernhard of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach in the background.

The stone building on the right is the former American embassy of The Hague, which since moved further away from the city centre. The monument in the distance is to Prince Bernhard of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach, a Dutch colonel back in the 18th century.

Categories: The Hague | Tags: , , | 2 Comments

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