Imagine…

… you’re an exchange student and you want to see typical landscapes of the country you’re staying in. In Zoé’s case: she told us she wished to be immersed in typical Dutch surroundings with meadows, cows, water and mills. Since Hester’s mom and stepdad live in an area with an abundance of all of those things, we went up there this weekend for a meadows, cows, water and mills galore!

So, last Saturday afternoon (21st September) after being welcomed in Pape-city we first went to a national park called ‘De Biesbosch‘, which is in the mid-south-west of the country. We only saw a small part of it of course and not even the best known part, but it had gras and cows and water and all kinds of wildlife even 🙂 . We saw geese, herrons, a (dead…) mole, a huge cricket, a (dead……..) hedgehog, all kinds of birds and spiders. We’ll spare you the pictures of the dead things ;), but we’ll try and give you an idea of the company and surroundings. You can read some extra information about this area (courtesy of wikipedia) if you look at the pictures inside the gallery.

After a walk of about an hour and a half the “oldies” went home to relax a bit. The “girls” wanted to go to Villa Augustus, a very special location in the city of Dordrecht. The centre of attention is an old water tower that has been repurposed as a hotel. But the huge garden surrounding it is a feast for the eyes too and it provides the hotel and the restaurant as much as possible with vegetables, fruit, herbs and flowers. And last but not least there’s a market café where you can enjoy delicious drinks and home baked cakes. Hopefully the pictures will show you why we like this place so much…

All that was very nice, but we didn’t see any mills yet this weekend, did we?
We had to wait until Sunday morning, but if this wasn’t mill galore, I don’t know what would be…

The area is called Kinderdijk. The origin of the name is not very clear, but it literally means “children’s dike”. If you’d like to read more about the area and history, you might want to take a look at the official English Kinderdijk website or at the Unesco website.

So, what do you think, were Zoé’s wishes met this weekend?

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10 Comments on “Imagine…”

  1. totoro says:

    OMG. als ik die taartjes zie…wat waren die lekker!
    Wat een belachelijke foto die twee meiden bij die boom. Pfffff.

  2. Mies says:

    Het was een heel gezellig weekend. Wij vonden het erg leuk dat jullie hier waren en dat we de omgeving hebben kunnen laten zien!
    Groetjes van ons,
    Wout en Mies

  3. Koen says:

    The blog is coming along very nicely guys (aka girls)! Great posts and pictures.. I’m almost getting the feeling Zoé has already seen more of the NL than I have… 😉
    How were the scouting meetings?

    • Thanks mang! 🙂
      The scouting meeting were lots of fun. Zoé’s supposed to be writing about that herself :P, but that’s not gonna happen any time soon I think, so since you’re asking 😉 .

      She went to two “open evenings” these last two weeks and had lots of fun. The first evening was a campfire night with playing games and just chilling. The second night started at one of the student’s rooms in this huge student flat where they had dinner with 13 or 14 people. After that they explored the city center by bike (it’s in Wageningen as this is a scouting group for students of Wageningen University). This Wednesday (it’s always on Wednesdays because most of the students go home during the weekends) there’s no official meeting, but three of the group members celebrate their birthday, so it’s party time anyway. The week after that Zoé has to be there early and go grocery shopping and make dinner for the rest of the group.

      Zoé loves being outside, so scouting’s great for that. And in this case she enjoys speaking to people that are her age or a few years older because at school everyone in her class is one or two years younger. Last but not least, the subjects these students study are exactly those that she’s thinking about taking next year when she’s going to university. Hopefully she’ll get an idea about what these subjects are like “in real life”.

  4. NK says:

    Gorgeous! Nature is awesome, eh?

    • Yes! I also love that picture you posted of that view with all the pine trees. It’s so different from what we’re used to. I can imagine that’s where you guys go to relax 🙂

  5. skates1418 says:

    Love these posts! I am an exchange student right now in Sweden so I can relate very well. I hope Zoe has a great exchange in the Netherlands!


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