Monthly Archives: February 2016

Remembrance (Or: Flowers by statues at Rabbijn Maarsenplein)

Recently Marco and I explored the neighborhood (Rabbijn Maarseplein) just outside of Spui/Grote Markt, past Hema. I came across a statue of a woman:

Statue at Rabbijn Maarsenplein with flowers

I am not sure why the flowers are there, but I suspect it has something to do with World War II. There is also a nearby monument to Jewish children who perished due to the war. Amsterdam’s public transportation was recently stopped for one minute to remember the February 1941 strike in protest of the prosecution of Jews (Dutch | English).

But I am actually not finding much about the statue of the woman online. Does anyone know anything further?

Categories: Culture, The Hague | Tags: , | 3 Comments

The Hague’s newest addition (Or: A statue of “Haagse Harry”)

Marco and I just visited the statue of Haagse Harry (Dutch wikipedia) which was unveiled earlier tonight. The statue can be found above the Grote Markt tram tunnel.

Who is Haagse Harry? A character in a Dutch comic strip who lives in The Hague and speaks The Hague dialect (plat Haags). Here’s an article about the unveiling of the statue (English | Dutch). The author, Marnix Rueb, passed away in 2014. His family used the prize money from a posthumous award, The Hague Culture award, to finance the statue.

Haagse Harry statue in The Hague

If you want to see an example of the Haagse dialect, you can check out this dictionary (a random Google link). The news article about the statue’s unveiling was also written in the dialect. They also translated a good portion of denhaag.nl into Haags in a mirror site (though I don’t know how long that link will work).

Haagse Harry statue in The Hague 2

There was a contest to determine what the text on the t-shirt would say. It ended up being “Kap Nâh!! Lekker belangrijk”.”Kap Nâh” is “hou op”, or in English “Stop it”. It’s also the name of the first album of strips released. “Lekker belangrijk” is “very important”, but said sarcastically.

And of course, here’s a view from behind. Typically Dutch…

Haagse Harry statue in The Hague from behind

Categories: Culture, The Hague | Tags: | Leave a comment

Chocolate and tea! (Or: De Beukelaer penny wafel)

It’s always time for chocolate! While at a friend’s house earlier this week I had tea with chocolate. In this case, the chocolate was a “penny wafel” from De Beukelaer, probably only found in Belgium.

Penny wafel wrapper from Belguim

Penny wafel from Belguim

Of course, they don’t taste quite the same as the sugar wafers I remember from my childhood — available in vanilla, strawberry and chocolate, although those awesomely nostalgic wafers tasted of artificial, sickeningly sweet goodness. Most of the taste was “sugar” rather than “wafer”.

It’s probably good I prefer these Belgium versions now…

Categories: Food | Tags: | Leave a comment

Haagse hopjes (Or: Wall decorations at MegaStores)

A few weeks ago Marco and I went to MegaStores. We mainly wanted to visit Woonexpress XL, a furniture store like Ikea where you have one path with different sections of the home along the route. At the end of the path is the storeroom with the larger items seen along the way (like shelving, drawers, etc.) for you to take. Beyond that you have the cash registers and the exit.

And what is MegaStores? It’s basically an indoor mall (a rarity for the Netherlands, unfortunately) full of mostly furniture shops. Marco and I both find it a bit disappointing as having only furniture shops definitely limits its appeal. I’ve only been there a few times myself, with one of those times to buy our two couches from Sanders. Of course, you do have some other generic Dutch stores here (Xenos, Kruidvat, Hema and similar) but since you can find them anywhere, there’s no great need to go here. Except that it is indoors, always a plus during bad weather.

One of the interesting highlights is a wall decoration of “Haagse hopjes”, a coffee candy made in The Hague. They are delicious. You can get them almost anywhere, including the VVV tourist branch in the The Hague public library’s central branch. Or cheaper at places like Xenos, but most tourists do not realize that.

Haagse hopjes wall decoration at MegaStores

Haagse hopjes wrappers as a wall decoration

I’ve posted about MegaStores before, with one post about how Dutchies tend to visit furniture stores on Easter Monday or to show the awesome escalator layout (and one VERY ugly rug – seriously, you’ve been warned).

One final thing – MegaStores also has interesting toilet facilities from a company called 2theloo. You can see pictures of some of the toilet stalls at Megastores. Each toilet stall has a different “theme”. Each visit costs €0.60, but keep in mind a lot of toilets in the Netherlands charge at least €0.50 and unless you are eating at a restaurant or some cafés you will have to pay. In this country most toilets are maintained by an outside company.

I haven’t had to use 2theloo, but if I ever do I’ll be sure to write a blog post about it and let you know which “theme” I chose. Haha.

Categories: Shopping | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

Pim café in The Hague (Or: Over on Wagenstraat)

For Valentine’s day, Marco and I visited Pim, a café on Wagenstraat. They have a “breakfast for 2” on their menu which I thought might be interesting to try out. While they have another café on Prins Hendrikstraat, the one on Wagenstraat has only been open since September.

The ambiance was pretty nice, beginning with the flowers on the table:

Pim cafe Wagenstraat Den Haag flowers

There was also a foosball table hanging on the wall:

Pim cafe Wagenstraat Den Haag wall decoration

And here is a look at the breakfast for two. Two large croissants, four pieces of brown bread, four pieces of white bread, orange juice, coffee, hummus and a few vegetables (zucchini, eggplant, paprika).

Pim cafe Wagenstraat Den Haag breakfast for two 1The blue plate was awesome…

As you can see below, there was also cheese, ham and two cooked eggs. I am not a fan of eggs in general, so luckily Marco was willing to eat mine as well.

Pim cafe Wagenstraat Den Haag breakfast for two 2

But definitely a nice breakfast – very filling!

Categories: Food, Holidays, Marco&Niki | Tags: , , , | 4 Comments

Deadpool (Or: A movie for the ages)

It is almost time to go see Deadpool! Marco, Roger and I have tickets later in the week to see it (it came out today). It’s what I like to call a superhero movie for adults…

Deadpool advertisement in Amsterdam

The advertising is rather crass, although remarkably funny. Marco says he almost wishes the advertising would continue on even after the film is released, as it’s that good (read: weird/crazy/unexpected).

Ticket to see Deadpool

My favorite is the billboard that makes the movie seem like a romantic comedy, just in time for Valentine’s Day. (There is also a synopsis about the film at that link if you are interested.)

If you want to see more of the crazy marketing Fox has done in advance of Deadpool, check out the WIRED article.

Finally, I’m a geek. I’ve also blogged about the movie candy when we went and saw Thor: A Dark World. Or when I posted about Iron Man 3.

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Super Bowl 50 (Or: Yay! Expats can watch too)

Guess what I am currently doing at 12:11 am? Watching the Super Bowl on our Apple TV via the CBS sports app!

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The best part is that it is through CBS so you get access to the commercials as well. For a few years we had an NHL app and the commercials were blocked on there due to it being shown internationally.

Marco and I both have the day off tomorrow so we can stay up extra late, provided the stream cooperates. But it is fun to be able to watch NFL again, and fun to see the commercials. I’ve missed it. For a few years we could see the big game on Dutch TV but with Dutch commentary. It sucked. They spent most of the game explaining how football worked. (Looks like it is available again this year through Fox, still with the horrible Dutch commentary.)

But we will see how long this lasts. The stream keeps failing. Grrr. 🙂

Categories: Sports, The Hague | Tags: , | 6 Comments

Spotted at Big Bazar (Or: Playmobile for the 21st century)

Marco and I had a bit of time to kill this weekend so we decided to buy a few things at Big Bazar, a discount store. We were in the toys section when Marco spotted an interesting Playmobile set:

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That’s right – there is a bank robbery in progress! And the side of the box shows the ATM and how you *ahem*… withdraw money from it.

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Playmobile is actually kind of cool. But I’ll always be a LEGO kind of girl.

Categories: Everyday purchases | Tags: | Leave a comment

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