Day 126: Beautiful Skies and Lunch

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Can you see the windmill in the background? This view was from my car window while I was stopped at a traffic light, on my way to the Dutch version of Costco. I love the open fields, cows grazing, flowing canals, windmill and trees in the background, and a sky filled with a changing cloud skyscape. I never tire of this view. This path is near Ouderkerk Aan de Amstel, one of my favorite little towns in Holland.

Hanos is the name of my new favorite store. It’s like a restaurant supply warehouse store, similar to Costco. They have great produce, meats, cheeses, wines, international food items, bakery items, decor, and general restaurant supplies. I love going there and imagining all the things I could make and bake. Today I was there to buy fresh rolls, deli meats and cheeses and some general items, as Gerard was coming over for lunch and Hanos opened at 7 am!

While serving lunch, I learned a few more Dutch and American differences. Along with sandwich fixings, I had bowls with crackers and chips, as well as condiments such as mustard out. Gerard, my Dutch cousin, asked me what the mustard was for. He said he likes to put mustard on cheese but never a sandwich. He puts butter on his deli sandwiches, as do many other Dutchies. At Subway in the USA, they don’t even offer butter as a condiment. I asked him if he wanted any Pringles potato chips and he thought that was weird. He says the Dutch don’t eat chips with their lunch. I asked when they would eat such salty snacks and he said as a snack, in front of the TV, but never with his lunch. Makes sense. He probably thought I was really weird when I put some crunchy chips on
my sandwich.

The other lunch difference I noticed is that the Dutch enjoy eating an open faced sandwich. But then is it still called a sandwich? They have two slices of bread with butter spread on top, and one side is topped with one slice of cheese and the other side is topped with one or two slices of meat and maybe a tomato slice but the two shall never meet. They then cut the topped bread slices with a knife and fork. Interesting, right? My mom claims they taste better that way. She and my dad both joined Gerard eating this way, but I stuck to my normal.

Coffee is served with every meal and in between. And after lunch, a dessert was served immediately. Fun, right?

After lunch, Gerard took my parents with him to Schindel for a few days. I’m sure they’ll all enjoy each others’ company. We already miss them and “hate”sharing!! Just teasing… But Charlie did say at dinner tonight, “Mom, remember how we were waiting so long for Oma and Opa to get here and how excited we were and we couldn’t wait, and now we’re all sad because they’re about to leave?” He’s one smart and intuitive little one. Yep, Char – I know what you mean! Anticipation works both ways… Luckily they’re still here for awhile longer.

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This is a view of the full moon tonight after a lunar eclipse. The sky was beautiful all morning and night.

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