Thursday, June 30, 2011

Today I signed a purchase agreement for the apartment at Horstermeerstraat 22 in Hoofddorp. I don't know if I should call this good news or bad news? It is a commitment, but we'll see how it goes.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

There were thunder and lightnings last night. Really nice. Like any stupid Icelander I went out on the balcony to watch the lightnings and count until the thunder arrived. The thunders were strong enough to cause the balcony to shake. In Iceland we generally don't get thunderstorms, they are rarer than hens teeth over there.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

People from Iceland melt at room temperature. The Dutch have higher melting point, but even they admit it's a bit hot now.

Monday, June 27, 2011

The heatwave has finally arrived. And my new roommate have also arrived. When the company decides that coworkers should share the company apartment you can't complain. Not that I would  have. This is really nice roommate.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

There are few planks of parket in the washing room. Really nice dark red wood pattern. This color is nowhere to be found in the apartment. The parket on the floor is a cheap yellow one. The red one must have been on the floor before. It´s amazing how people sometimes, usually through ignorance, downgrade their surroundings.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

These weather forecast people have no idea what the weather will be like in half an hour, let alone tomorrow. I sometimes think that they use dartboard to make the forecasts, or look at how the weather was on this day one year ago. Enough said.

Friday, June 24, 2011

After an almost monsoon like rain this week the forecast is good for the weekend with up to 35 degree heat expected. Try to top that in Iceland. :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

A coworker came walking into the warehouse today saying "kald, kald, kald." I understood him right away. Kalt is cold in Icelandic.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

In the beginning I meant to use this blog to speak about differences between countries and how it is to be stranger in another land. Now I don't see so much difference anymore.
One of my coworkers was telling me today how difficult it was for him to drive in Spain. He had a car with manual gearbox and every time he had to start driving uphill the engine shut down. As someone who has been starting driving uphill since he was a teenager I found this funny. But it was not easy for The Netherlander.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

I've been listening to Leonard Cohen the last few days. I bought the 2 live albums from his "recent" live tour. One has the concert in London (Live In London) in whole, while the other has the top performances from the tour (Songs From The Road). The first album has bigger selection of songs, and few mistakes, while the second has better performance and a DVD. On these albums he's covered material from almost all of his half a century long music career. I have been a fan of Leonard Cohen since late eighties when his album I'm Your Man came out. His older songs, like Hallelujah, have been popular last few years. It is still strange to think that he was 74 years old when on this tour in 2009-2010. Other famous performers who have been doing well in their old age are/were Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, Elton John,

Saturday, June 18, 2011

While browsing through the books in the bookstore I found a book by Arnaldur IndriĆ°ason in Dutch. It looks like Icelands favorite author is making also making it big in The Netherlands.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Iceland celebrates it's independence day today. Like Silvia Night said "Congratulations Iceland". I encourage everyone to join in the celebrations. The weather should be nice in Iceland, it´s raining here.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

My trip to Iceland (yet again) has been delayed. It looks like my former employer has been complaining to my current employer, that I've been giving my former employers customers advice on how to do something themselves that my former employer has no intention of doing for them.
It's really, really, really hard not to write my opinions, on my former employers employees, down at the moment. But I believe that it makes me a better person in the end.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

To quote J.R.R. Tolkien. "Not all those who wander are lost." It's fitting for last weekend.

I've made a verbal commitment to buy an apartment here so I'll have to find IKEA soon. Next weekend I'll take my TomTom with me. The apartment is a small one, 55-60m2 and the previous owner is an woman who has been moved to a retirement home so you can imagine what it looks like. But the layout isn't bad and I have some ideas for cheap modifications that go a long way towards making it a really nice apartment.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

I decided to use the day and go to the nearest IKEA store. I´m back home now after being lost for 3 hours. At least I know where I was lost.
It´s not a bad idea to adjust the Android phone so that he can only get internet connection through the wireless network in your apartment. It´s not a good idea to expect the maps in the GPS unit to work far away from the apartment. Too bad that I only turned it on after I got lost. It worked so well in the apartment when I tested it. :)

Saturday, June 11, 2011

I went to see a real estate agent today. We have a meeting next week to look at an apartment. It will be interesting.
In other news. It's almost as if it is old and disabled day here in Hoofddorp today. There are lot of old people, in wheelchairs and with oxygen mask, in the shopping center. There were also few kids with Downs syndrome walking with their parents. These are the people that rarely get out among the average public so one often kind of forgets that they still exist.

Friday, June 10, 2011

The weather here has been strange today. Sun and rain and sun and rain. The sun was just like usual, temperature in the higher part of the twenties but the rain was unusual. It was almost monsoon in it's intensity. I've never seen so much current in the canals here.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The canals here in Hoofddorp are full of water, even overflowing. Few weeks ago I visited a pumping station (Hoofddorp is where the bottom of an old once was). They were letting water flow in, not pumping it out. This was because there have been little rains this summer and the farmer pump water from the canals into the fields.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

When leaving Iceland I took with me couple of packages of hot dogs (sausages). When I'm in Iceland I put Ketchup, Remoulade, Mustard, Onions and fried Onions in the hot dog bread with the sausage. So after I came to The Netherlands I started looking for those ingredients. Not recalling having seen it in The Netherlands I cheated and brought Remoulade from Iceland. Finding ketchup was easy, the Dutch like ketchup almost as much as they like their mayonnaise. They like mayonnaise on bread, with their fries and basically everywhere you can imagine, quite often with Garlic taste. First I went to the Dirk supermarket. I found Ketchup and Onions there. In Hooglivet I found hot dog bread. In Albert Hein I found Fried Onions, interestingly enough, in the Indonesian food isle. The only Mustard I've found is Dijon which I already had in my fridge.
So, how does it taste? Just like usual. Was it worth it? Sure.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

A blind man could see the differences between the toilets in Iceland and The Netherlands. Even if it was in pitch black darkness. In The Netherlands the toilets are about 1 meter square, almost like an outhouse, usually without windows, often with the famous Dutch "shelf" toilet and always with some sort of sprayer for the smell. Where you have the famous Dutch "shelf" toilet the brush is always wet. The bathroom is independent from the toilet. In Iceland the toilets are always inside the bathrooms and if there is a smell, they can open up a window.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

I´m back in The Netherlands after just over week in Iceland. The temperature is more than 10 degrees warmer here and there is sunshine. It is painful for my eyes after the greyness of Iceland.

Friday, June 3, 2011

My friend Elsa was complaining that her husband was keeping her up all night with his snoring. That is quite an accomplishment since shes been deaf since she was a little kid. My friend Bragi, her husband, was complaining of her kicking him while they were in bed. :)