Time passes by. So quick. Soon we will celebrate 5 months here, we keep counting and I hope, soon, I will let it go. Summer came and now in Netherlands it’s hot, the sun is up in the sky and all you think about is… a cold beer on a terrace or on the beach, a new book – another story.

We decided not to take a big holiday this summer, we want to enjoy Netherlands more, being the first year and we have found a really good traveling pass at NS. With only 29e per month you travel free of charge in the weekends in all Netherlands. Sounds good, right? Here is the link if you are interested. I like a lot how you can enjoy other cities with almost nothing: you can buy a beer & sandwich (salad) and enjoy them in a park wherever you want. Another good to have is the museum card – it costs 65e per year and you get in free of charge in almost all the museums in the country. With all of these why should you stay in the house? Even if it’s raining you have all the interesting things at your feet.

2 weeks ago my parents came in visit. In fact I went in Romania with the thought to come back with them – they never traveled by air and for the first time I wanted to be there. They were so excited, like kids getting a toy they always wanted. The same joy I saw on their face when we went to the sea for the first time, 6 years ago. I felt accomplished to see them so happy. In the 5 days they stayed in Netherlands I gave my best to show them what they never seen before: a big zoo with aquarium (Rotterdam Zoo), a trip with the ferry (from Den Helder to Texel), a cheese market (Alkmaar’s one), the furious North Sea (at Bloemendaal) and, of course, the Red Light District and the Venice of North (Amsterdam). I don’t have so many pictures with the landscapes, but I will upload here some of them.

In the past weekend good weather was announced. We were thinking to visit some cities, but we weren’t sure which ones. First we thought to go in Vlissingen, but on friday we staid until late in the night in Zandvoort to admire the sunset. In Zandvoort we weren’t the only ones: from time to time other couples were setting a blanket on the sand and open a beer. We staid in the sand for some time, drank some Jillz (during our walks in Haarlem I saw a lot of young girls drinking Jillz and I was curious how it tasted: the conclusion was that is like a sweet water, it doesn’t have anything to do with the english cider) and after that just walked on the cold sand. The sun was in the clouds, so at the moment the sun should have been in the sea there was not so much to see, but the water was perfect for a short walk through it.

On Saturday we wake up a little bit late, so there wasn’t enough time to go in Vlissingen. We decided to visit Dordrecht, which is an amazing city! I heard about the city, but never expected to like it so much. Another lesson I got since I am here is the pure joy and chill water gives you. Until now I wasn’t such a water lover: it was ok to go to the sea, but I wasn’t so thrilled about it. But here I just like to sit on a bench near a canal and slowly dive in the silence. In Dordrecht you can use a waterbus to travel from one part to another – and also to other locations (Rotterdam, Kinderdijk, De Biesboch). The city has a special vibe and I am sure we will go back soon.

For Sunday we were thinking to visit Almere and Lelystad, but the train route was under construction and I didn’t wanted to spend so much time on the road. So we decided for Amersfoort and Weesp. Nice to do in Amersfoort is to climb the tower from the old city center. Being opened only in July and August, we didn’t climb it, but wherever we were in the city we could see it. I was surprised to see the gates of Amersfoort – in Romania we have a lot of fortified cities and I never thought that in Netherlands are too. In Weesp I found out that there’s a route of 50 km of fortifications around Amsterdam and Utrecht – maybe when I will be confident on the bike I will be courageous enough to do it. I found Weesp a nice city to live in – it is small, close to Amsterdam and the house prices are quite good.

All of these are the good fairy tale lessons: enjoy your free time, refill your battery and smile because weekend it’s close as days pass. The “fairy tale” I got today is that you should pay your health insurance since the moment you register to municipality (even if at that moment you are unemployed), so we need to pay our health insurance retroactively since February. So as a tip if you just moved: pay it now, because if you don’t, for sure you will pay later!

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