For lunch today we cycled to the old Soestdduin railway station, about 14km from our house. It was around 30C, but with a little wind, and it was a pleasant ride, we were in no hurry.

Lunch at Soestduin

Ater a fine three course Italian meal al fresco, we skipped the dolce, sipped an espresso, and cycled back. This time a slightly different route, taking us along the railway line through the woods, entering the city near the zoo again, and from there onwards home.

A good first day of our staycation.

Went for my first haircut in 4 months, putting an end to my ‘mad professor’ style. As I do after every pandemic, I changed hair dresser. The barbershop I went to is located on a former industrial site, that now has a range of small shops and companies. I was a bit late, but this time I had proof of the age old Dutch excuse for turning up late for school: the bridge was open.

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After my haircut, enabling me to show myself in public again, I noticed a pleasant looking place right across from the barber. I had coffee and their great looking home made dade/orange/nuts cake.

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Then I cycled home through the Schothorst park. A pleasant morning outside after a mostly grey and rainy week.

20200711_120211 Schothorst

First train trip in three months. The last one was on March 12th to Utrecht. Today I’m going to Amsterdam for a meeting that needs to be done face to face. Face masks are mandatory on public transport, and the railway stations have added signage for it.

Curious to see how busy or not the streets in Amsterdam will be.

New signage on railway station Amersfoort

first train trip in 3 months

pandemic signage at Amersfoort railway station

Wednesday we went to a nearby store to look at some garden furniture. Now that it is likely we will spend most of the summer at home, and for certain will not be camping somewhere else in Europe, we wanted to have comfortable seating on our waterside terrace.

The store is on the edge of our neighbourhood looking out over the highway. We spotted something that has been very rare the past 10 weeks: a traffic jam!

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Today is King’s day, our national holiday. Normally it turns the entire country into a giant orange colored street festival and fleamarket, but this year we’re all at home. It’s been dubbed Woningsdag, or ‘houseday’, which differs from Koningsdag, King’s day, in its first letter only. In my head King’s day is the start of ‘flag week’, as April 27th is followed by May 4th Remembrance day, and May 5th Liberation day, the only three days in the year the general population flies a flag. The Netherlands isn’t at all big on flag waving.

This year it seemed there were more flags visible around our neighbourhood than last year, regularly with the telltale folds of newly bought and unpackaged flags visible.

When Y woke up and came downstairs we unfurled the flag together and mounted it next to the front door.

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