Marco and I spotted some beautiful graffiti in the Wagenstraat in The Hague’s city centre.
Beautiful, isn’t it? if you live in The Hague and you want to check it out yourself, go to the Wagenstraat and then find the side street called Wagenstraat (no, that’s not a typo). The side street is around the corner from a Chinese restaurant, Kaa Luu Palace.
Today Marco visited the city centre to do a bit of shopping. Lucky guy had the day off! But he did take a photo for me (thank you). It turns out he found a fuze tea stand handing out free samples:
He chose the blueberry jasmine flavor and remarked about how they tried to make the giveaway corona proof. Normally it’s a chaotic group of people standing around, cutting in line, hoping to get in and out quickly. But today they had a line (see above) with self-service – you reach into the display case and grab your own tea. Which had the nice benefit that they don’t open the drink and then hand it to you to drink right away.
Today’s weather in short: sudden buckets of rain that fall onto your head without warning, lasting about 5-10 minutes, while a blue sky shines mockingly above you. And cold weather. Much colder. Apparently we went from an extreme heat wave to lower-than-average temperatures. Hmph.
The UIT festival is a cultural festival normally held on the Lange Voorhout in The Hague, about a 5-10 minute walk from the city centre. Uitgaan in Dutch means “to go out”. This year, due to the coronavirus, the festival was renamed to “Binnen uit”, or “Inside uit”, referring to the fact that the cultural events will mostly be held inside this year. Reservations are also generally required.
Today I’ve chosen a random photo of the city centre for you. Take a look at Annastraat:
As noted, it’s in the city centre: not far from the Grote Kerk and just around the corner from restaurant Milu, where Marco and I held our wedding reception back in 2013, although it was a different restaurant then.
In and other news: Germans must walk their dogs twice a day, new law will say from theguardian.com. And each walk must last an hour. In theory it sounds good for dogs everywhere. Yet in reality it seems too hard to enforce. Does it take older or sick dogs into consideration? Or bad weather (freezing temperatures or scorching temperatures)? Personally I don’t expect to see this law lasting long… but you never know.
Today’s photo is of a large piece of graffiti over on the Boomsluiterskade, not far from the Bierkade:
And as I always say: it’s not a Dutch photo without a pile of bikes in front of it!
Today’s big news: A sizable portion of The Hague (the city centre, Duindorp, Scheveningen and more) has been without electricity since just after 11 in the morning – about 37,000 households. Turns out there was a fire in one of the power stations. Luckily Marco and I didn’t have any issues – I have too much to do for work! But a lot of people were trapped in elevators, a lot of stores in the city centre and the city hall were forced to close, trams were diverted, etc. It was a bit chaotic today, that’s for sure.
Some of the city centre had its electricity restored after a few hours, the rest is only starting to get electricity again within the last half hour. The good news is that it didn’t happen last week during the crazy heat wave. I can’t imagine that scenario. After two days of loud, rumbling storms and the occasional moments of pouring rain, it has finally started to cool down around here. Yay.
Today’s photo is of the directional signs placed on the Grote Markt, one of The Hague’s busy shopping streets.
The city is trying their best but I don’t think the signs are always that clear. Part of the problem is that the Grote Markt isn’t split evenly – one of the sides is about as twice as wide as the other. Does that mean the wider side has traffic in two directions but the narrow sign is only in one direction? There are also stickers in the ground that seem imply that the wider side is all one direction, just like the narrow side, but good luck with people following that (I’m also guilty of being on the “wrong” side sometimes).
You learn something new every day. Marco and I took a short walk before dinner and I took a few photos of The Hague’s skyline, not far from Centraal Station. I’m a fan of Malieveld, but apparently the small park on the other side of the street is called “Centraal Park”. At least, that’s what Google Maps calls it.
Here’s a look at The Hague’s skyline from this angle.
Today’s photo comes from Oog in ‘t Zeilstraat which literally translates to “Eye in the sail street”. A lot of Dutch phrases find their origin in the sea. Eye in the sail refers to the sailor up in the crow’s nest – their job is to “keep an eye out” for any trouble.
According to indebuurt.nl, though, the street is named after a house in 1654 which had the name Oog in ‘t Zeilstraat. Perhaps the house was named after the phrase? And of course it is partially hidden, but you do see a least one bicycle in the photo.
After the press conference yesterday, Amsterdam and Rotterdam decided to require face masks in parts of the city (article at nltimes.nl) from 5 August. Local intervention does seem more useful than country-wide intervention – Amsterdam and Rotterdam reported 76 and 68 new coronavirus cases in the last 24 hours, while there were almost no cases reported in other parts of the country.
On to the weekend (and great temperatures tomorrow)!
Today’s photo is of the Rootz restaurant on the Grote Markt, in the heart of The Hague’s city centre:
What do I always notice first? The red and white shutters as they are very European looking. The signs at the bottom of the photo point to the entrance (ingang) and the telephone number for reservations (reserveren?). The restaurant is quite careful to say that you don’t need a reservation for the terrace and (if there is space available) you don’t need a reservation to sit in the restaurant inside. After passing all of the health questions, of course.
I’ve never ate at this Rootz, only at the Scheveningen location near the beach. Unfortunately that location closed some years back. It was a great place for beer choices, though the menu itself didn’t have a lot of options that appealed to me.
Speaking of the Grote Markt, I read an article at Omroep West: Fietsers niet meer welkom in groot deel centrum Den Haag (bicyclists won’t be welcome in a big part of The Hague’s city centre). However this change doesn’t go into effect until October and doesn’t cover the Grote Markt street itself quite yet. There’s a separate review about what to do with the largest shopping street. Starting from October, most of the smaller streets will be closed to bicyclists from 11:30 until shops close. There are still a few streets that will always welcome bicyclists, though.
The streets marked with dark blue and yellow lines will still allow bike traffic 24/7. All other streets in the shaded green area will be closed to bicyclists from 11:30 in the morning.
The weather today is just as good as predicted! Lots of sun, lots of warmth. I decided to take a photo of the Haagse Harry statue over by the Grote Markt plaza:
We don’t have any big plans this weekend, which has been great after a long week of work. In addition to enjoying some sun earlier I also played around with Affinity Designer a bit this morning, working on some isometric designs.
I’m also in the middle of reading My Year of Rest and Relaxation in Dutch but I have to admit some of the humor is either too dark or gross for me. Not enough to stop reading, but definitely enough to ask myself “What the heck?” sometimes.