Sunday, November 23, 2014

Lunging on....

several of you have mentioned that you dont think my lunging will become a trend... buhuh. so well, then i will just have to continue doing it myself. or have tim do it, of course..... 
just too bad im holding my bag, now the effect is less, i think.
ah well, plenty more opportunities to try again!!

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Golden jacket

how can you tell this in the US and not in the netherlands? 
first there is the ATM sign in the window and the ladies' barnes & nobles bag (but the latter of course doesnt mean anything, i still use american shopping bags here). most certainly the pavement. for pedestrians the pavement never looks like this in the netherlands (unless there is some construction going on), and it very often looks like this in the USA. also, the pavement will be more elevated from the remainder of the street (i guess at least twice as high as above). then the shoes; i guess she will exchange them for something more stylish once she arrives at her destination. this is something dutch people never do, but they also dont wear as high heels as americans tend to do (but they often do wear heels, and in general i think dutch women wear more stylish shoes than american women). i actually am seriously contemplating to do as the americans do; comfy shoes for the commute, fancy shoes for the office. i will be so much faster while trying to catch a train, and my nice shoes will stay nice much longer.... but i wouldnt want my colleagues to see that i am a shoe switcher.... hmmmm..... how to solve that problem! :)
and the jacket? i dont think many dutch women would wear one like this, but it was the reason for me to take this pic!

Monday, November 17, 2014

A wedding!

a few weeks back we attended a wedding. but in this pic, when looking back at them, i first noticed the boy before i saw all those in the back. including the pretty bride.... the boy really liked the hat. he had found it. or perhaps his mom put it on his head, i forgot. and the  he just walked around with it. it seemed like nobody noticed, but at least i did... :)

Sunday, November 16, 2014

American bike

very american bike (to me also the type of bike, not just the stars and colors, except the basket on the front) parked at a very dutch canal! :)
here you can once again clearly see why many bikes end up in canals....

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Eehhhmm... art?

at the same museum (see my last post) we also saw the above pieces. a tissue box holder, a vase and a lamp. tissue box says "love", but the lamp is a kut-lamp and the vase a lul-vase. the dutch among you immediately saw that that is pretty weird....!! anyone else..? i suggest you use google translate or something...  :) is it art? hmmm... is it weird? most definitely. would i buy it? probably not.... 
the artist is dienand christe and somewhere i just read that the thing he likes to do most is "annoying other people"... 
the museum btw is the kunsthal in rotterdam. they currently have a very extensive exhibit on 50 years james bond. im not that big of a james bond fan, but i really liked the exhibit. there are a lot of gadgets on view, as well as dresses, costumes, storyboards, etc tec. its very nicely done and it even made me want to see a james bond movie! (although we still didnt get to do that). when we were there, it was extremely crowded (while the remainder of the museum was interesting too, but was quite deserted), so much so that we eventually did the exhibit from finish to start; we actually were able to see more that way.... :)

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Shadow words

a few weeks back we were in a museum and this is one of the things we saw. tim only saw the wires and said; ah no, this one is boring.... but look!! there is a mirror at the end of the wires, a lamp, and.... shadow words as a result.... who would have thought?! how do you do that? but well... quite a complicated way of writing.... :)

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Bed cover

in the fanciest store in amsterdam (i would compare it to bergdorf goodman, i guess), we saw this bed cover. i got tim to pose, and took several pictures, but my camera is getting a bit old, and the one pic where he is really aligned with his new body is missing... (sometimes it wont actually store the pictures anymore. on top of that i lost the lens cover 2 weekens ago. buuh. still need to do something about that). i was really tempted to buy it. were it not for him.... then at least for myself!! but that was before i saw the price.... :)
ah, and imagine the excitement kids will have! im sure i would.... maybe not as a ballet dancer... but i think the cover next to it was a super hero or so.... ;)

Monday, November 10, 2014

Armour boys

yesterday i was too lazy to post, so tim did... :) that was his picture and text, and this is my picture. we like to photograph in different colors..... the pictures were taken over 2 years ago, in lincoln, massachusetts. it was at the de cordova museum, and the soldier you saw yesterday is part of a 5-piece installation named "armour boys" by laura ford, a british sculptor. in the above picture you can see 3 of them, including the one you saw in close up yesterday. (to the far right you see tim and his father). it is no longer on view at the museum grounds, i just saw on the website. 
but... the sculpture references child soldiers and the practice of sending men and women, in the prime of their youth, to fight and potentially die in battle. the artist herself cites a film depicting the death of a Palestinian child as inspiration for armour boys, and is sensitive to the fact that children are all-too-often the unfortunate casualties of war (you can read it all here).
i do miss going to this museum! their exhibitions changed often and the sculpture park was very nice too....

Sunday, November 9, 2014

the soldier


against a tree the soldier lies
his last thoughts linger as he dies
my form preserved by iron cast
my burden falls away at last



tim wrote this

Friday, November 7, 2014

Floating garden

see that green spot next to the boat? a floating garden!! as those living on the water still want to have a garden.... i do wonder whether they can walk on it?!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Big bear...

ah, and me. lunging.... :) after a day of biking through amsterdam (where we passed lunging rembrandt, the fancy gym, the meadows and the marathon, i.e. nearly all my recent posts), we wanted to finally go home. not too far from our place was some roadwork and we had to take a detour. suddenly we faced a giant bear at a rather tiny playing field..... of course we had to stop again so i could take some pictures! (well, tim in this case...)
this bear made of concrete is 11 metres tall.... its called "staalman" (literally its "steel man", as staalmanplein is the name of the square), and is standing there since 2011. the buildings around the square were all recently built. the little park at the feet of the bear was co-designed by the kids in the neighborhood. one of their requests was a sculpture. they asked the dutch artist florentijn hofman (hes responsible for the giant floating duck and other giant sculptures around the world), and together they choose a bear. with a pillow under its arm. the pillow symbolizes bedtime; children should goto bed on time instead of being out on the street till late, so they are well rested again the next day. moreover, the pillow represents moving houses; all the people in the neighborhood had to literally take their pillows and leave their old houses for the new ones to be built....

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Outdoor gym

this is in the amsterdam forest (het amsterdamse bos). it is called "the bosbaan"  and is a rowing lake. but its used for swimming too.... when we were there, again a few weeks back, we stumbled upon the triathlon. well, it was 1/8 of a triathlon (i think). they had to swim 750 metres, then bike 20 km, and run 5 km. when a pool of swimmers was released, the water was not this calm, but soon after it become sleek like above.... watching this all made both me and tim sort of wanting to join as well. but we dont have wetsuits (it wasnt cold, so i dont think it was needed), and we also dont have fancy bikese... would a normal dutch bike suffice as well? then i would try... but all the contestants had fancy bikes and helmets (and some a big beer belly; that convinced me i could join as well!). some would come out of the water and jump right on their bikes. others would change (some would even strip completely). some were in a hurry, others first dried themselves before putting on their next set of clothes. same when to returned for their run... quite interesting to see.....!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Fancy gym

while biking around amsterdam, we passed by this huge house (not too far from yesterday's picture, btw). it has a pool behind the black vases, but the most remarkable thing (to me at least) was the gym. can you see it in the back? its more or less a slim glass box with everything a gym needs, so it seems!! how fancy to be working out in a glass box, for everyone to see, while you yourself can look out over green meadows...?
while i was taking some pictures (i was not satisfied with any of them, but i didnt dare getting too close, i wasnt sure people with such a fancy house like simple people like me taking pictures of their property!), a couple biked past us and the lady said "well, not that i have EVER seen someone working out there..."
and well yes... im not sure i would like to work out in a glass box like that....

Monday, November 3, 2014

Dutch light

we have had remarkable weather the past weeks. sometimes typical dutch weather; very grey, and lots of rain and wind. but unseasonable warm days as well. like last weekend. the first weekend of november, when its supposed to be grey and cold.... instead it was bright and sunny, even warm, almost! (although a bit windy on sunday). today we are back to dutch autumn; grey skies, wind, and quite some rain.
but the above you see often as well in the netherlands. this kind of sky, and this kind of meadows with cows (or sheep), surrounded by water. and next to it the road for biking (or driving).
when travelling home from work, i often still realize how happy i am to be working again, finally. even though i need to travel quite a bit to get to work and back (it easily takes well over 3 hours of travelling each day). it does mean i get home, rush to the gym (not every day but i try to go as often as possible during the week), eat something and.... well.... dont do much after that as the next day the alarm clock goes off early again. tim is still on the other side of the country during the week and thats quite an adjustment too..... the blog? i often think about it when in bed already. i do take pictures, and so often i think; ah, thats something i would like to show.... and then... well, nothing.... :)

Sunday, November 2, 2014

New light!

we saw this "advertisement" for a painter a few weeks back. i thought it was really funny!
the other day in train, i looked up from what i was reading... and saw that around me i was the only one reading something that had been printed. all the others were busy on their phones. at least nobody noticed that i was randomly staring at everyone.... :) sometimes, very, very sometimes, i wonder whether i might need such a phone after all...... but then i go back to reading "something printed".
biebkriebels asked me 2 days back whether tim wasnt tired of all the standing (see my last post), and today my sister asked when i would finally post again... so, here it is, another post... :)

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Rembrandt lunging!!

rembrandt does lunges!! did you know? the painter? yes! i didnt know either, until we had a proper look at this statue you can see above. a lunge? no, not lunch. tim is trying to do a lunge too, but as you can see, its totally wrong, while rembrandt's lunge is perfect.
never heard of a lunge? i dont know when i heard of them first (probably when i saw bojos do them in the gym, heavy weights in hand)... i do very well remember when i did one for the first time. it was not too long ago, and i didnt have to do one, but many of them, while holding a barbell on my shoulders. ehm yes, i was following a "body pump" class. result? i could barely walk down the stairs for days afterwards. ugh.... now i try to do them every now and then, and although wikipedia says that "the lunge is a basic movement that is fairly simple to do for beginner athletes", i dont think its really that easy.... (or perhaps im just not an athlete...). here you can watch a video as to how to do a proper lunge. but you can also just look at rembrandt above, whahahaha.
this is along the river amstel. we biked there on saturday, as it was another great after-summer-day. no jackets needed! behind rembrandt you see a "molen", which was built in 1636. lunging rembrandt was placed next to in 1969, 300 years after he died. many of rembrandt's drawings were made along this stretch of river. i just wonder whether he was always lunging when he painted. then he must have had some powerful leg and butt-muscles! ;)

Friday, September 26, 2014

Weekend flowers

took this last week while working from home. one of the things i like about my work is that it is totally ok to work a day from home. its even stimulated... whereas with labwork that wasnt possible of course, now all i need is a computer and an internet connection (more or less...). at first i was hesitant, but i am slowly getting into the habit of staying home on wednesdays. unfortunately, i dont win a lot of time with it, although each tuesday evening i hope i will. but come wednesday morning.... i really do NOT want to get out of bed as early as i have to when i need to catch the train... so... the won time in the morning is usually slept away, and in the evening its spent in the gym. the dishes? still there.... :)
ah, but i did find some time to take a picture of this plant on our table..... :)

Thursday, September 25, 2014

The Netherlands!

no, this is not an open air museum or something. this is an actual city, Edam, not too far from amsterdam. we were there 2 weeks ago, just driving around a bit. it was so cute, but as usual these days, i hardly took pictures. i just snapped a few when we were in the car again already, so this one is a bit crooked.
the days are rapidly getting shorter. its now dark out when i leave for work in the morning. buuuhhhh. it wont be too long before i will leave and return while its dark. i should still tell you about my work! in fact, there is so much i like to write about. and pictures i like to show... but then its evening, and suddenly its time for bed and then.... im just too tired.... at the moments days go by so fast! i guess im still not in some sort of rhythm. i do think getting up so early is a little less terrible as it was in the very beginning... :)

Monday, September 22, 2014

Morning ride

here most of the fog hd gone already, but saturday morning it was very foggy! as often these days (sometimes leading to terrible accidents on the road, like last week....). i was in the place with no internet for the weekend (i.e. groningen), so no posts... i had planned to post from the train on friday, but then the internet was not working... now im back in the train to work, and i do have a connection (but who knows for how long!!). its 6.45 and still very quiet, although crowded... last time i took this train it was filled with young kids, making so much noise!! ugh... hopefully they wont come today, i am really enjoying this quiet.
its still dark out (in the evenings its getting dark so early again too. buuuhhh), so i wont be able to enjoy the foggy fields for the coming hour or so... time to see check what i missed because of a weekend without internet (not that much, probably...)

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

While waiting

yesyes. defending your PhD in the Netherlands is a very serious business. you need to dress up, and everything goes according a strict protocol. the candidate and his/her 2 paranymphs have to be present well in advance. so there is time to get the "protocol" explained, and even practice a little (where to stand, when to sit, where to bow to the committee). of course, we were even earlier than "well in advance". but that was fine. did i mention already the weather has been great this september?! while august was awful, september feels like summer. as a result, we were overheated when arriving at the place where it would all happen; its not easy walking around in fancy clothes i can tell you....
we had to wait in the above room, so i had some time to take pictures. i guess you are supposed to work up your nerves in this room, but this was a better way to spend our time.... no? :)