Saturday, September 25, 2004

Packing & Last Minutes

Time goes so fast and tonight at 19:45 (7:45pm) I am flying!

I have NOT finished the dreaded packing because being a busy lady like me haha *smirks* I should have done it last week! Though ironic isn’t it, I almost update my blog everyday, but well, not this week. I am blogging late, hehe.

I remember someone asking me how I manage to juggle everything. The answer is easy: "I make time for things I like!"

Well let's see what I did...

Monday evening was school, it is impossible to pack when you get home at past 22:30 (10:30pm+), hungry, tired and brain dead. You know with clothes packing, you need your brains in motion to be able to pick the right mix ´n match of every outfit!

Would have wanted to pack on Tuesday, but the company had a nice dinner together that left me drinking a couple glasses of wine. So by the time I arrive home, I can’t function that much.

Wednesday… what did I do Wednesday? Oh my god I forgot!

Then Thursday evening I had again the Dutch class and had to inform my teacher that I will be absent for 3 sessions. The first thing she said was: “Je mag maar vifj sessie niet aanwezig zijn” (You can only be absent five times).

Then last night Friday, Dutchman and I had to attend my brother in laws verjaardagsfeest (birthday party). He turned 43. I will delve more into this Dutch Birthday phenomenon in the next weeks and months since late autumn till winter is the Birthday season of my Dutchman´s family.

So PACKING... I actually kind of love and hate this task simply because of the following reasons:

A. I love choosing which clothes to wear and partner with but I hate packing them in my suitcase.

B. Oftentimes I over pack. I always overestimate. I tend to want to bring everything with me which is impossible, such as those matching shoes and bags for every outfit. Actually this is a vain woman´s problem.

C. Packing always has something to do with leaving. On 2nd thought, I think Dutchman will enjoy having the bed all by himself so he can stretch those long Dutch legs without any obstacle.

D. I love traveling but I hate airplanes though I like airports. I mean I like visiting the shops in the airport.

E. I always forget to pack my toothbrush in. It happened 2x this year. Why? It´s one of the last activities I do before leaving the house: Brushing the teeth. And upon reflex, I just put back my toothbrush in the bathroom counter.

Today Saturday is our grocery shopping day… so before I go to the airport (should be there at 5pm because I have to hoard some last minute stuff, see next paragraph), I will buy some of the popular Dutch goodies, such as the Groninger Worst (Dutch dry sausage) and bring it for my family, so they can taste a little bit of Dutch food. I´m glad I shopped a considerable amount of Spices and Olive Oil in Greece during our summer holiday, so that serves as additional presents.

I also need to buy Dutch souvenirs for my favorite customers or let´s say it professionally, business partners, hehe. I guess I can buy them at Schiphol airport but I have no idea which of the many legendary Dutch souvenir should I buy.

Hmm, a Dutch tulip? Dutch wooden shoes? Dutch windmill? What about Dutch cheese? Or those polka dotted Dutch cow? Help?

Sunday, September 19, 2004

My Weekend Life

It’s Sunday morning right now. I still don’t know what our plans will be for the day, though tonight I will be on the laptop working. I need to send a really pensive email to my customer and they need to read this first thing in the morning. I guess I have succumb to being numb in this business. As they say, if you are in sales, you must be makapal (thick-faced)!

So, let’s talk about what went yesterday….

I again, good heavens, shopped. I think I have become a true-blue shop-aholic. Forgive me if I sound too boring with this shopping litany, this is still my blog anyway.

The thing is, I badly need to change some of my wardrobe. They look quite outdated already like I am left behind inspired in the early 1990's vogue. It’s time to feed my narcissistic fashion logic. So I bought….

3 Skirts: chocolate brown suede, grey mini flip skirt, and crème leather skirt.

2 Blazers: chocolate brown suede and black blazer.
3 Tops: light caramel turtleneck, grey cardigan and chocolate brown vest.

Beauty & bath stuff and new hair color! (I am going to dye my hair later!)
Make up replenishment, Max Factor

I also bought colognes and perfumes for my family as my pasalubong (arrival gift). I'm flying to the Philippines this Saturday!

I’m still eyeing other gears to buy but I’m auspiciously a mix between spender + frugal = spending money wisely (I hope? Haha). Alright, no one believes me anymore, but here is the secret... I always have budgets for my vanity expenditures and at least I know when to slam the brakes.

When I got home from my shopping spree, Dutchman was as usual in his desired spot. I think he has his butt glued already into this black leather fauteuil. To remove him will be a big catastrophy.

He eyed my shopping bag, “I see that you enjoyed your day
Yeah, pretty much!” , raising up the bags.

Show me…” Dutchman said, still busy fiddling with his laptop.

What I loved with Dutchman is, he gives, well as much as necessary, the time to appreciate the things I buy. And he always seals it with this statement, “You have taste”. Hmm, perhaps I should shop more! LOL.

Should we go out tonight?” Dutchman asked after I showed him all that I bought.
Sure, let’s have coffee in the Centrum, then after let’s watch a movie” I said.

As quick as a fox, Dutchman jabbed his fingers into the keyboard of his laptop. You can easily reserve movie tickets online via this website, Belbios. The reservation confirmation # is sent to your mobile phone, pretty cool huh. Dutchman chose the Terminal movie by Tom Hanks and Catherine-Zeta-Jones.

We then proceeded to our usual hang-out café, the Le Journal Café in Neude square.

I like sipping coffee in this café simply because they have all sorts of newspapers and magazines from pure red-blooded gossips to home design to fashion & style. I attacked the Weekend and Prive gossip magazines.

These subscriptions tittle 'n tattle the most watched Royals of Europe, and here's the hot dish in town, Princess Maxima (of Holland, soon to be Queen) is lazier than Princess Mathilde (of Belgium, also soon to be Queen). The latter executed more royal duties and less vacation this year. And another story, the Dutch prince, Prince Willem-Alexander (soon to be King) is suing 2 German magazines for fabricating a story that his marriage to Princess Maxima is in threads due to his flirtatious expose with Inge de Bruin, the Dutch Olympic Gold winner for the swimming competition in Greece.

Oh my god, can you believe this? I am really reading these nonsense royal gossips, maybe I am finally ingeburgerd (integrated)? Dutchman thinks I am reading too much garbage. He must be right.

Alright, watch check: It’s movie time.

The City Theater where we went was quite small but cozy. And my Terminal movie review? Well, let's just say that I didn’t expect Steven Spielberg to direct (or produce?) such a sloppy film. It was dragging and I got impatient watching it. An OK film but nothing spectacular. I was in fact relieved that the Dutch invented pauze (pause) in the cinema because the dang movie went on for 3 hours!

You might be wondering what pauze means...

My experience with this was quite interesting. I was watching this film with Dutchman years back during my first visit in NL. I forgot the name of the movie, I think it was Meet the Parents, not sure. Anyway, during the middle part of the film, which is usually the climactic part when the flow of the movie's story is riveted with suspense and well, in some cases, depends on the type of movie, its those part when the audience are almost about to pee in their pants (and if it’s a thriller show, it would be hiding and watching through the fingers like how I would do anyway)…. then suddenly I heard a series of sounds: CLICK! BLINK! The film stopped. The movie house is now totally enveloped in darkness AND then, there was light, followed by hustles by everyone. No one ran though but everyone started getting up.

What’s going on???” (In my mind: Fire? Emergency?! A bomb!??!)
Dutchman as if nothing happened, stood up, “What do you want?” (He meant what I want to drink and eat! LOL)
Me still perplexed, “What the hell is going on!?"
There’s a pause” says the Dutchman.
What pause?” Then I saw people coming back inside with huge popcorns and chips.

Man, what a scam. They have some sort of INTERMISSION so they can earn more money. Goodness gracious, the directors and producers should see this. And all the while I was thinking there was fire!? LOL

It was past 1AM when we left the City Theater. We went around looking for a club or bar to sit down. Utrecht, as I have said in my previous entry is a Student City, so naturally the clubs and bars are full of kids. All over, teenagers in hordes polluting the Centrum with their bikes, and girls dressed like its still summer!? WTF.

Dutchman and I hopped from one place to another looking for the right bar to sit, at least somewhere where our age won’t be magnified lest we be extradited.

We decided to settle for the Orloff bar, quite nice and most people are within our generation, fortunately. Hip loud music... and my trance was interrupted by this woman dancing scantily like there is no tomorrow, trapped in warp land. I personally think she just wants to get laid, and Dutchman agrees too.

Oh well, she was well worth the entertainment at 2 in the morning.

The next day...


Hmm, Dutchman is awake, that's him calling me! I gotta go... maybe later we go to IKEA and check some gadgets for the coat hanger. It has been a year and Dutchman still hasn’t finished the dang coat hanger in the foyer!

This is what you get when you settle for a techie and not a handy man. As the saying goes: “You can’t get everything in life”.

Saturday, September 18, 2004

The Beverly Hills of NL

My colleague, who incidentally looks like Frans Bauer (a famous mass type singer here in NL) threw a little drinking party after work at his new flat in Bloemendaal. The activity was in fact quite refreshing after that rough twisted day. So I called the Dutchman and told him that he better feed himself, alone hehe.

Bloemendaal is one of the chic places where the moneyed in the Netherlands live. But unfortunately the houses in this area pales in major comparison with the abodes of the rich and famous in other countries.

The distinct Dutch characteristic must as usual triumph. The cheese-heads don’t like showing off too much of their wealth nor they like to talk about it (they say it has something to do with their Calvinistic background). They are a rebel lot when it comes to snobs, but take that as a grain of salt because there are always exceptions breathing and walking around.

A quick glimpse on how these so-called affluent ones live...

Mansion manor worth € 1.25M (US$ 1.5M)

Villa worth € 1.9M (US$ 2.3M)

Mansion manor worth € 1.39M (US$ 1.7M)

I think these dwellings are not that ostentatious compared even to the MTV Crib show where you literally see man-made lakes and lagoons in the backyard.

Well it was quite fun driving around in circles in Bloemendaal because we got lost, LOL! I felt like we were in a never-ending maze, the dang TomTom navigation software was not precise or was it our fault? But I didn’t mind anyway, I just leered away at the dwellings.

I only had 3 glasses of Jack Daniels whiskey, and when I got home Dutchman was in his desired usual spot.

Oh wait gotta tell this, one of my colleagues smoked POT (weed)!!!

Sunday, September 12, 2004

Home Essentials

I am well alright and back to my shopping mode *Grin*. Bizarre but V&D is open today! Why on earth are they suddenly open on Sundays? Could it be finally, Dutch capitalism? Becoming Americanized perhaps? Haha. Well they actually have this Circus something sale going on, maybe that was the case.

I bought new silk cushions for our black leather sofa. They come in soft earth colors: Cream, Toffee, Light Rust, Light Lime Green. Actually, they match perfectly with my cream wool carpet and walls, and the exotic and period inspired fixtures giving major enchantment to the already eclectic-cosmopolitan living room. Dutchman was very well pleased. He should as it was my own money.

But there is one dinner ware item (well actually a set) that I really would love to buy to satiate my home-dining carnality, its this Metropolitan Villeroy-Boch porcelain set. They also have this new Japanese inspired porcelain in black, which really made me want to take out my wallet and buy.
I'm glad it was almost 6pm or my purse might have committed another suicide. Kidding.

Villeroy-Boch Metropolitan New Wave Edition (Aren't they sexy to you? There were no photos of the Japanese inspired ones that I liked, sorry)

This will be one of my next special projects once the dressoir (kind of a buffet table) and silver mirror are delivered, hopefully they will be this month. Hartog Wonen, the culprit is taking them MONTHS to build the dang furniture. We ordered it last June, goodness gracious, it’s been 3 months already?

Anywho, I’m going to get my hands on this Villeroy-Boch set. I think it’s any sane woman’s dream for her home

Saturday, September 11, 2004

Double Dutch: Sick because of Shopping

I have fever and colds. Must be because of the weather? In Dutch its called koorts (fever) and verkoudheid (colds)... pronounced in English as "fer-cowed-hide".

I have the damn thing since Thursday. Yeah, don’t ridicule me for going out on a shopping blitz *lol* the other night, it was only a mere sickly feeling that I thought I could handle. Though I knew already that I will be really blown out sick the next day Friday, so I gathered enough strength and energy and shopped Thursday night, I mean I will be locked up in the weekend anyway! Smarty pants eh?

Well I didn’t go to work yesterday and Friday either. The fever was running high and my throat was so terrible, couldn’t even swallow my own saliva without causing pain! I only woke up about 30 minutes during lunch to eat, call in quick on Dutchman at work and checked my laptop. The next thing that woke me up was Dutchman opening the bedroom door when he arrived home at 7:45pm. Oh dear, I slept the whole freaking day away!

He was so sweet, he brought me KFC hot chicken wings (the tiny 6 pieces) that I requested when I called him during lunch. I don’t know but I always have this severe craving for chicken when I am sick!

I couldn’t anymore lay in bed after that. I guess I have had too much sleep indulgence. The next thing I knew I was blogging. Can anyone actually relate?

Today, Dutchman earned another extra point. Yeah it’s really about time! He did grocery shopping while I stayed at home recuperating. When he came back with the goods, he had a huge grin on his face. Something told me that the shopping went eventful.

He announced, “I did the shopping real quick today because you were not around”.

I just rolled my eyes.

I think what he means by that is, he will do ALL the subsequent grocery shopping alone. Fine!

Friday, September 10, 2004

The Mighty EURO

The €uro currency was introduced in 1 January 2002 and have since been in circulation within the 12 Euro countries in Europe. Google them if you want to know which countries.

The implementation is supposed to make life and business easier for many Europeans, but does it really?

Its entrance created a raucous cry from the many agitated consumers resulting to a much needless expensive European life. Ooops, knowing the frugal Dutch, they are the ones suffering and clamoring the most!

In the past a cup of coffee in a cafe costs around hfl. 2,80 (Dutch Guilder). Now it is about € 2,00 (could be more depending on how upscale the place is). Ack, that’s about hfl. 4,40! Can you spot the difference? Inflated prices… and there have been a lot of musings going on that the €uro is so much inflated in value. How true?

Anyhow, here’s the currency of the new millennium. Enjoy, they are very colorful but they pale in comparison to the Dutch Guilder, click this Dutch Guilder link and you will see why!

The 5 €uro - Reminds me of the Philippine 2 Peso note in the past. I have not encountered any ATM here in NL that spew out € 5 notes.

The 10 €uro – What I normally feed my wallet. Yes, weekly.

The 20 €uro - The highest amount my wallet can get. Umm, am I finally being Dutchified???!

The 50 €uro – The highest amount you can get from any ATM here. This is also my favorite €uro note. I just love its peachy color, really cool!

The 100 €uro – Unlike the US$ 100, the € 100 is not commonly used, nor I think it is ever used? I have YET to see it! And look at that color, harvest green, green? How green can you go? *Grin*

The 200 €uro – Is this REAL money??? Yellow money? Darn, they look like play money to me, just like the ones you get when you play Monopoly or Millionaires game!

The mighty purple 500 €uro – I wonder if anyone have ever transacted with this note, or let me rephrase that, if anyone have ever SEEN this note! I bet people framed their € 500, that is if they are lucky enough to ever get a hold of this purple money!

FYI, the € 100, € 200 and € 500 are not part of the circulated €uros in the Netherlands [perhaps in other EU countries, it is].

Many European establishments, yes even banks do not accept them as the issue of counterfeit money is very high. People prefer not to risk and deal in multiples of € 50 or the popular way of transacting: Pinnen (debit card).

Thursday, September 09, 2004

Turtlenecks and Tights

Its Thursday so it’s Koop Avond meaning extended sales, extended opening hours. I am also in the mood to pick up where I left off, from my shopping spree that was cut last Sunday.

I have been meaning to shop last weekend at Bijenkorf but time didn’t permit me at all. Dutchman and I woke up late, as usual. We have turn into night owls prowling the kingdom of cyberspace till the wee hours of dawn. Unquestionably. No weekend breakfasts for us, instead weekend brunches. Nicer though.

Alright, let's do some explanation here...

Bijenkorf is analogous to Rustans in the Philippines, the only difference is that, Bijenkorf doesn't have a grocery department. It’s caters to the high end market BUT not as high end as you may think. PC Hooftstraat in Amsterdam must not be forgotten, the street where top signature and designer shops are located.

A reminder though, Holland is not even close to comparison with other European counterparts when it comes to fashion and shopping. You will not see a lot of the top expensive signature shops here compared even to the Philippines. Interesting huh, but do not be shocked, Dutch distinctiveness must prevail. Frugality rocks in this country.

It was past 7pm when I marched off to Bijenkorf. The center of Utrecht was swarming with shoppers, men women and kids alike their hands full with bags from V&D, C&A, M&S, P&C and H&M,all those typical Dutch and European storebrand acronyms, obviously initials of the owners name.

Bijenkorf was brimming with the new seasons’ collection and autumn lingers in the air everywhere, with shades of bright green and orange dominating the window platforms. I kind of like the season’s new designs and in fact I was so tempted to buy orange and green stockings.

Time flew so fast. Alas, it was 5 minutes to 9pm so I switched back to reality and stopped my wanton shopping.

What have I bought? Only 3 fit TURTLENECKS: Orange, Black and Brown… and 3 TIGHTS. Not sufficient! I badly need a whole day to shop, well I take that back, a week instead!

Tip for the NL girls in buying tights/stockings. In Dutch it’s called, can you believe this, PANTY! LOL!

At any rate, if you are in Bijenkorf, buy the Italian brand: Emilio Cavallini Hosiery & Bodywear because they are of quality, they have small sizes, cool designs and the price is OK between € 9,00 to € 15,00. Hema (by the way a sister company of Bijenkorf) also has small sizes, sometimes they have nice looking tights and much cheaper too, about half the price.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Episodes: Sex, City, & Forensic Science?

Well it turns out that I like them both and I am relieved they don’t fall on the same time slot because they air it at the same night! Tuesday nights. If that happens, I probably will storm my butt in at the TV station in Hilversum (Media City of NL) and demand it to be moved!

But what would I choose really, if I had no choice? --- I would bet on "C.S.I."

"Sex & the City" is a great show…. great with fashion, career and the independent lifestyle but it doesn’t feed your inner mental thirst. In fact, I am so shallow and vain because I mainly watch the show to check out what they are wearing! Yup, the clothes, the shoes, the bags, the accessories, their hair, make-up… all that jazz and enchilada a woman wants.

I like the fact that they are career women, sporting a frivolous independent lifestyle without a man helping them pay their bills. Girl power as Spice Girls and Destiny Childs would say.

But sometimes, the storyline of SATC can suck and be damn CORNY. It exasperates me.

Like tonight in the final season episode where Charlotte got married. Anyone watched this? Ugh, what was that? Bad luck one after the other? Are they so desperate to stick to the so-called comedy theme that the show have risked itself to new charters of corniness? Bear with me for being a critic but I just want to kill the darn remote control. The punch lines they had in the show were a big joke, soooo overworked.

I know I am a terrible woman as I have no patience for dumbnation.

That’s why it keeps me sane to watch TV shows such as CSI. It brings me to the rational experience, at least. Oh dear, I start to sound mentally pompous, haha.

Actually I have been a CSI fanatic ever since this TV series invaded the Netherlands.

Problem solving type of movies just turns my libido on. I know the show is quite gruesome with all the gory blood, black ‘n blue color skin tones of victims and intestines coming out of their dead subjects. But hey, the whole cloak and dagger dissecting process makes it really exhilarating to follow. I say gripping.

Morbid? Perhaps, hehe.

I like both CSI versions, Grissom in Las Vegas and Horatio in Miami. The only thing I don’t quite get, which I anyway tolerate because it’s done ingeniously, is how on Hollywood earth can they always come across so sharp and perfect in their forensic jobs?

The show is also executed with full sophisticated sarcasm from the cast’s point of view towards the guilty party. In fact they start to behave like detectives and police officers. It annoys me at times, the smarty-pants act and well, just how everything seems to fall together like a puzzle, right at the exact moment. Last minute baby.

But anyway, for me, the thrill of the chase and solving the crime is worth my airtime, anytime.

Monday, September 06, 2004

Kitchen Keeping

Its past 9PM, Dutchman and I are now lazily reclining in the sofa, well he is in the opposite fauteuil (this is actually his spot at home where you can find him at least 80% of the time) and me in the big sofa while we both enjoy our customary after dinner routine: coffee + TV + fiddling our laptops + internet + chatting with each other. Its some kind of unadulterated multi-tasking hehe.

As a matter of fact, I’m just done with the everyday after work home grind – kitchen keeping, a new term I invented, as a subpart of housekeeping.
Reality is, I am wishing I am back in Manila. I am having nightmares with this housekeeping chores. I have never been good with this, argh!

Back home, I have a call-in help that comes in every weekend. She does almost everything, from the cleaning to laundry and ironing. I fix her lunch though. See, I also have a conscience.

But here in NL, I am the desolate help, I am the MAID! Well at least not an all-around one. I have to give credit to the Dutchman also, he is after all my other half-MAID.

So what does he do? He does the laundry and drying, cleans the toilet and the bathroom and of course, is in charge of our home maintenance. Other than that, he also does vacuuming, other times I do it, when I am not in the bitchy mood. Oh, what else? Ah, I almost forgot, he irons his own clothes too.

Man, after re-reading his list of responsibilities, I just realized that I have a good deal for a Dutchman. I am really a great negotiator.

But on second thoughts, think of it this way... he does most of those chores during the weekend, and during weeknights, he sits delightfully at home, in his favorite fauteuil waiting for me to serve dinner. Then after having his fill, he is back in his desired spot... this time waiting for me to finish up as he sucks up to watching TV and playing with his laptop and surfing the net. This is every single night during the week!

Unlike me, the poor me - I have to do every single night of housework! As you might already notice, I am the cook at home and the kitchen is my kingdom. That's everyday work, damn.

OK, let's see, what is my daily breathing space... well Dutchman sometimes helps me load and unload the dishes in the dishwasher and he makes the coffee after dinner, which I really appreciate a lot.
He is reading this by the way. *Grin*

But here’s the catch22, as he claims it is, that I love cooking anyway. So in this sense of the discussion, Dutchman says, that in reality, he is giving me a favor by entrusting to me the kitchen.

Sunday, September 05, 2004

Internet Banking for Expats

... in ENGLISH !

I received last Friday a letter (actually a big sized envelope) from ABN Amro, but which I only opened just a few hours ago. I don't skip and get excited when they send me statements or any of those usual marketing garbage, so I rarely open anything from them quickly.

The first thing that caught my eye was the brochure inside. It says, Internet Banking for Expats. Ooohhwie, this is cool!

I heard in the past that they had an English Software version of the Internet Banking but it came in a CD pack, which was manually installed in your computer.
Later on, ABN stopped this program and asked everyone to settle with the online Dutch version of Internet Banking.

Well, I am glad that ABN has retracked the English version of Internet Banking. Though, a bit too late for me, I am quite comfortable with the Dutch version already. Thanks anyway!

Dutchman interrupted my reverie with a hearty laugh and said: "Haha, they thought you're an Expat". He went on his merry way laughing sarcastically...

I smirked at him like a little tiger would do when annoyed and announced: "Damn right! Technically I am an expat, but according to you, I am not."

Dutchman replied grinning profusely: "Well yeah that's correct, you're an expat because you are living and working outside your country of origin but since you came here in NL via me then you are not recognized by the government/tax department as the usual expat (with a working permit)".

What an irate. *Grumbles*

My response: "Hmmm, if you were listening correctly, that's exactly the same thing I said. You just explained it!"

That reminds me that the real Expats here pay lower taxes. They have this 30% Tax Ruling.... and sadly, I, don't, as I am an immigrant.

Dutchman changing the subject, "Well, ABN Amro definitely knew that you're a foreigner!"

"What should I do? Be paranoid?" LOL.

Wednesday, September 01, 2004

Utrecht Snapshot 1

Canal Bridge in Oude Gracht (Old Canal)

Utrecht is typically rich with canals, just like the capital sister city, Amsterdam. Fact is, many people say that its just like a mini Amsterdam, but ssshhhh Utrechters do not really like to hear that, hehe.

History also pointed that the Utrechters traded spices (spice trade with Indonesia) here during the medieval ages. Trading boats unload their cargos in the basement cellars which were used as warehouses. Above these were supposedly merchandising shops now transformed into commercial retail stores and expensive residentials.

Utrecht Snapshot 2

Vismarkt (Fish Market)

Check the small bridge in the picture, that is the centuries old fish market of Utrecht where people back in the olden times buy and sell fresh fish. It is presently an area full of charming cafe terraces enjoyed by a lot of Dutchies, especially during summer when they bask under the sun.

And see that green dakkapel (extended roof) also? On the left side of the street? That's a specialty kitchen shop selling all sorts of kitchen wares and gadgets. I love visiting that place when I am in the center.

Ah well....

Why is it that it is always different when you are looking at foto's? Pictures give us that awe-some feeling, or I guess nostalgic tendencies, compared to actually walking through the streets and canal bridges of where we live, totally unaware of its wonderment, simply because we have grown to become too familiar with it.

I sometimes think that on elected moments, it is healthy to be detached from our surroundings. But... in as much as we love the comforting touch of consciousness, with distance and detachment, we are able to enjoy and float in the euphoric magical spell of re-living antiquity and how amazing this place was and still is.

Yes, even for just a fleeting moment of looking into a picture.

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