Monday, September 24, 2012

Graffiti proposal

when biking from my sisters apartment in utrecht to the city center, i passed this mural! i had to take a picture of that, of course. as you can see, its hard not to take pictures in the netherlands without bikes in it, either parked bikes, or as above.... :) (unfortunately the sun was only illuminating the upper part of the house... )
the mural says: "lieve afra, wil jij met mij trouwen? Jan" and next to it: "ja!" which translates into; "dear afra, do you want to marry me?" "yes!" i googled around a bit and found an article that tells me that the person who painted it is a graffiti artist named Jan, who made several murals in/around utrecht. here he got permission to paint his marriage proposal on the wall of someone's house. he then led his girlfriend to it, and proposed to her. and as you can see, she said yes! isnt that cute?
there really was quite a bit more graffiti in the netherlands than i remembered (i had not been there for almost 2 years), and there was also a lot of random, ugly graffiti along the train tracks. but apparently it has always been there, and i just forgot....  :) but as you can see, this mural is pretty recent, from july 2012.
for more monday murals, go here!

Dutch snack

above; 2 glasses of white martini with lemon, and to the left a very dutch snack that i really missed while in the us of a: "bitterballen"!! ofcourse, there is a wikipedia for this snack that you can read here. in short, its a savoury snack, with a thick meat-based ragout, battered in an egg-breadcrumb mixture, which has been deep-fried. you eat them hot, with some mustard (but be careful, when served they are usually still too hot to eat, i speak here from experience). hmmmmmmmm!!!! hmmmm!!! they are sooo good! also with a glass of beer.... in fact, the dutch mc donalds has a special burger, with a patty-shaped version of the "bitterbal", on a white bun, with a sort of mustard dressing (the mc kroket!). i had that the first day i arrived, together with my sister... (they were on sale, only 1 euro, hahaha).
unfortunately, eating these in a cafe is expensive. like everything you order in a cafe. generally, service is much slower than in the us, but at least you dont have to prove you are above 21 to drink alcohol. on the other hand, the huge glass of ice water i now always order does not come standard in the netherlands, and in some cafes they will even refuse to give you a glass of water, unless you pay for it..... (i.e. you have to buy a glass of bottled water as they do not want to give you one for free from the tap). also, paying with card is not that common, and you thus will have to bring cash, preferrably some change; as you already have waited so very long for the check, you dont want to wait yet again to get your change.
why cant the mc donalds over here have this dutch snack on the menu?! im sure the americans would love it!