Monday, April 20, 2009

Holland: Day Five

Day 5 was rough. I was totally exhausted this morning when I woke up, as were the rest of the zombies. Breakfast was quiet and curt, which was blaring foreshadowing for the rest of the day (though how could any of us know?!).
We piled into the car at 10am and drove to Zansa Schanz, nearly 2 hours away. By the time we got there, we were hungry again. We went to a little restaurant in the town and they clearly sat us in the “noisy American section” by ourselves. Lunch was limited, as always. I had a vegetable and Serrano ham roll. Tostis abound and plenty of glass bottles of water followed. When the plates were clean (and the wait staff breathed a sigh of relief), we headed out to the famous wind mills of Zansa Schanz. We didn’t know until we walked inside that each of the mills cost 3 pounds to enter.
After the first mill, the pigment mill, I was both bored and nerve-wracked from standing 10 feet away from the HUGE windmill blades. We walked down to the other mills, which I skipped and naturally turned out to be amazing and fabulous. I tried to turn inside myself to find some great lesson or insight in the moment of silence I spent outside the mill, but I frankly just got cold and wind-burned.
Next we walked to the cheese store. Cheese store. Got that? A store that sells cheese. It also has cheese samples. Samples of cheese. For free. I gained 5 pounds.
Finally, we went to a wooden shoe museum, watched them make a wooden shoe, and checked out how much it cost to buy wooden shoes. Corey and Caroline had several meltdowns regarding the cost and quantity of the gift shop items. It was very interesting and while I could easily have given in to the “bright colors,” I chose to pass all the way through without dropping a single Euro.
At the end of the day we had to have a family discussion about whether or not to go further north to the fishing village or head back south to closer to home to have dinner. Everyone agreed with Corey that it was time to start heading back; this is when Corey’s outspoken character came in VERY handy. However, the God-forsaken GPS system took us a ridiculous way home so we decided to stop in a town called Europort at a restaurant called De Beer. De Beer was a very colorful and modern looking hotel in an otherwise extremely old part of the country. I soon made eyes at David, indicating something out of place. It wasn’t long before I was able to signal his gaze to scan the horizon of what he would soon discover to be a full restaurant of gay men in pink ascots eating dinner. Here we are, the single most Americanized family in the entire country, eating dinner noisily in an upscale gay restaurant. It was a terrific joke we had to ourselves for most of the meal, which was faaabulous (of course). Outside, David tried to explain to his parents that we were just in a gay bar. His mother INSISTED that they were “well-dressed sailors”. You know how common they are; so common as to require their own hotel dedicated to art and find cuisine. Tomorrow we have a relaxed day in town that I will be enjoying THOROUGHLY.

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