When Marco and I arrived this weekend in Amsterdam, we decided to have coffee and lunch at a Bagels & Beans not far from the hotel. The location was on the river IJ, which meant beautiful views.
The empty seat in the photo would soon be filled by a father and his young daughter, though they hadn’t arrived yet. She was super cute (although at the age where she knew exactly what she wanted and wasn’t afraid to say it). One of things she wanted to do was blow bubbles in her juice, no matter what her father said. Unfortunately that fun stopped when she accidentally knocked the glass on the ground, shattering it. She was fine, not even crying, but she definitely quieted down after that.
On the way to Bagels & Beans we saw a plane flying past in the distance. Imagine my surprise when I saw the message:
“Stop the Corona hoax!”. Crazy. I suspect this is quite normal for Amsterdam, though. Maybe The Hague would have the same, but planes don’t fly over due to the government buildings.
On Saturday we visited Vondelpark (English Wikipedia). I had never been there, knowing it only as the park that was frequently closed during the corona crisis due to it being way too busy. It was definitely busy on the day we went, although there was enough room for everyone.
(Of course I found the greenest, most landscape-y part of the park to take a photo.)
Earlier in September, Marco and I visited one of the local Bagels & Beans cafés to enjoy a lunch outside. It was a bit cold, but doable as long as I kept my jacket on. It was probably my first visit in 2020, although admittedly we usually only go a few times a year. Check out our chai lattes:
I always loved these plates, and pretty much forgot about them until I saw our coffees. I also had a bagel with butter and chocolate sprinkles, but I was decidedly not Dutch about it. If you’re Dutch, you spread on the butter and then pour the sprinkles on top. The butter is mainly there to help keep the sprinkles from falling off while you take a bite. I have no interest in butter and chocolate together, so I instead simply alternated which one I put on my bagel. Which did mean I sadly had some chocolate sprinkles left over, but c’est la vie.
It definitely showed that I haven’t been to a Bagels & Beans in a while. I forgot that you need to pay inside. Which worked on in the end, since we were also asked to leave our contact details for corona purposes. Unlike other places (with a QR code you scan) you simply wrote your details in a notebook with a pen.
In other news, The Hague library no longer requires online registration before visiting the library (article in Dutch from the library website). The rule only lasted about two days, but was temporarily required after the press conference last Monday. A few days later the library received status in The Hague’s emergency ordinance as a doorstroomlocatie, or basically a place where people walk through it to experience something or get something (museums, monuments and attraction parks are other examples). This was probably for the best, since the link above mentions that there were long lines outside of people waiting to get in. Face masks are still urgently advised the library, like all public indoor locations in the Netherlands.
Here is your Awww moment for the day. The first color photos of the panda cub born earlier this year in a Dutch zoo are available:
The panda definitely knows how to pose for the camera.
I was looking through my phone recently and I came across a few photos that I had taken earlier in the year when Marco and I went to Bagels & Beans here in The Hague. The first time I had ever had a mochaccino… it was pretty tasty! I generally go for black coffee, but this choice was not to be ignored.
This past Thursday was a national holiday here in the Netherlands – Hemelvaartsdag, or Ascension Day, a Christian holiday. Marco and I decided to take the tram to Zoetermeer and do some shopping. Well, I decided to do some shopping and Marco begrudgingly came along… I kid, I kid.
We visited the Stadshart (City’s heart) to do our shopping. I did manage to find a new pair of pants for work – harder than one might think as the Netherlands seems to discriminate against short folks like me! Here’s a view of the indoor part of the shopping area:
One interesting thing about this area was the lack of proper protection against wind in the beginning. Not long after it opened it became clear that this area was really nothing more than a huge wind tunnel. I found an old article in Dutch about the issue (article) but I mostly know about it from the stories Marco told me.
As usual we stopped at Bagels & beans for a coffee and an apple crumble. The weather wasn’t as good as it was a few weeks ago in Leiden but it wasn’t too cold. For the Netherlands anyway…
A few weekends ago we took a trip to Bagels & Beans, primarily known for their coffee and bagels (as if you couldn’t guess from the name!) They do have really nice bagels – examples include plain, cinnamon raisin, and everything. If you want cream cheese, you’ll get a generous portion as well. Always way more than I need, though I don’t like as much as most people do.
But we were there long enough that we decided to order round two… this time I went for an iced coffee and we shared a cheesecake.
It wasn’t as good as the Cheesecake Company, but cheesecake isn’t Bagels & Beans speciality, either. Don’t get me wrong – it was perfectly decent cheesecake. 🙂 The iced coffee was pretty nice though. It’s funny, I never really drank coffee when I lived in America (until the last year I was there), but now I am quite used to the nightly ritual of coffee after dinner, or coffee after I get back from my Dutch lesson at 10PM. It doesn’t really ever keep me awake, so I don’t have to worry about that!