Friday, May 20, 2011

European vacation, Part 2--Bloemendags and tulip fields

Tuesday, May 3–On recommendation from both our Dutch friends, we drove over to Limmen to see the displays for Bloemendag ("flower day"). The residents use just the blooms from hyacinth and other spring flowers, pin them to backgrounds to make pictures, and leave them up for the week. Everyone rides/walks around to see the displays, which are sometimes political, sometimes sports related, sometimes whimsical.

Afterwards we drove over to Volendam for lunch at the St. Catherein where I love to sip beer and watch the ships, bought some tulip bulbs which we are assured don’t need a certificate because there’s less than 50 bulbs and they are clean, bought a couple of scarves because I just can’t resist them, and Skip bought a piece of painted porcelain HE couldn’t resist. Then we returned to the hotel to nap in the late afternoon because we were still suffering the effects of jumping ahead 6 hours, had dinner at the hotel, and spent the evening on the patio, knitting and watching the sunset.
Wednesday, May 4–Skip and I chose these dates for our vacation because we wanted to see the tulip fields. 

Two different pink tulips here
SO RED it hurts our eyes!

We also drove over to Anna Palowna for their Bloemendag displays and stopped at a little restaurant/deli on the corner for lunch.
In celebration of Mothers Day on May 8

On our way back to the hotel, we stopped at Gre’s again to have dinner with them. We thought, Fons wouldn’t be able to join us for a take-out Chinese dinner because the church choir was singing at the war memorial in Akersloot–May 4 is the Netherlands’ Remembrance of the Dead, the day they honor armed forces members and civilians who died in wars or in peace-keeping missions since the outbreak of WWII.Between this and the Queens Birthday on April 30, the entire country was swimming in orange!  However, the ceremony finished early and Fons was able to enjoy yummy hot Chinese food and good conversation with us again.

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