(I've changed the name from "Rants" given that I can't really rant about many things that frustrate me here, at least not without getting into some sort of trouble. As such, you'll have to wait for the book.)

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Catch up Part 1 - The Hague

Alright, I keep putting this off but I can’t any longer. It’s been almost 2 months since I posted anything and I need to get back into the flow. As is always the case, the more that is going on, the less I have time to write about it.

I’m currently back in Burundi. I wrote the last post not long before heading to the US for our vacation. You would think that while on vacation I’d have time for such things but it was not to be.
sun setting over the Congolese mountains as we depart
By the end of June we were off to the Netherlands. We had scheduled a stopover in The Hague to visit friends. We’ve done this several times and it’s always good – both to see them and to break up the trip to the States.
couldn't pass up the windmill photo
The weather in Holland was cool for this time of year. The Dutch definitely like to take advantage of summer to be out and about. Most have small or non-existent gardens so people generally hop on a bicycle and take advantage of the many green spaces. It’s so green and efficient that it’s almost surreal. You see people happily riding their bikes in front of old, beautiful windmills and you think that it’s a bit too postcardesque (yes, I made an adjective of postcard). Like this can’t be real.
hanging with friends
I love the Dutch. I found out yesterday on the BBC that they are officially the tallest people on the world. There are likely many reasons for this, including genetics, but it apparently has also to do with diet, health and healthcare. Yes, they ride bikes everywhere but the food has all the fatty things I love (cheeses, meats, beer, wine, etc.).  And they’re not shy about sweets either. Fitness + fats + sweets is the winning combination.
ahh the yummy Dutch food
We were able to see two sets of friends that we met during our time in Burundi. So nice to hang out and catch up with them. Though they’ve moved on with their lives from when they were in East Africa, you can sense that they do miss it. Unfortunately we didn’t have a lot of good news to share about what’s going on. Nothing on the horizon to think that things might improve. As foreigners you can lament about the tribulations of the country but we can’t compare our sentiments with those of its citizens. It’s very sad and a striking contrast to life in the Netherlands. 

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