Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Trip to Holland

Early this month, my wife and I took a short vacation trip to Holland. What’s the first things you think of when you hear the word ‘Holland’?

Clogs, right?   Those wooden shoes that can’t be that comfortable, though I suppose they’d float in the canals they have there. But before I get to that, do you think she should have asked for a smaller size?

OK – say no more!

Yes, Holland is also well known for canals (to float those clogs in) and bicycles:

Well, there are other things one associates with Holland. I took the following photos to illustrate things we saw in Holland that were - well, a little ‘different’ than what you might expect.

Naturally, one thinks of windmills – but this is what caught my eye as I looked to the sky at sunset:

Holland – home of the Dutch Master’s - that band of famous painters from times gone past, right? Well, what I saw was this band of street musicians frozen in time:

Ah yes – tulips you say!  Holland is renowned for tulips, but these were the floral beauties caught my eye:

OK – Holland (part of it) is on the coast, so it must have beaches, right?  Of course – here is one of them:

Normally, one thinks of coastal Holland as being very flat, but as you see here, this beach – just 80 miles or so from the last photo, shows sand dunes 100 feet or more in height:

Well, if you have gotten over that scary sight of yours truly, it is time to ‘fess up’

The first two photos above were taken in 2006, in Amsterdam, Holland. The rest of them were taken in and around Holland, Michigan! THIS Holland is a town on the eastern shores of Lake Michigan about 6 or 7 hours drive from home in St Louis. We spent a few days there meeting up with 4 of our grandchildren who live about a 3 hour drive to the east. The weather was perfect – about 80F (27C) and we enjoyed seeing the sights, ‘tourist shopping’ in the numerous small towns nearby and dipping ourselves into the somewhat coldish waters – even frolicking in 2-foot high waves one day, whilst the next it was mill-pond calm.

The final photo is at the Indiana Dunes Park – near Michigan City, Indiana – on the southern shore of Lake Michigan. Whilst I prefer sea-water to freshwater bodies, at least Lake Michigan has no sharks, jelly-fish or spiny echinoids to worry about – those will be issues to contemplate on our planned tropical vacation in November.

On the return, we spent a couple of days in Chicago where we bought Irish-style bacon and sausages, ate a very nice Thai meal, Greek gyros and shopped for hours at IKEA – a Swedish home furnishing store. So, it was quite an internationally flavored week – and no passports or TSA agent-confrontations were needed – just about 1,100 miles of driving!

Lots of fun was had - in Holland, USA! 



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