Thoughts and memories of living and traveling abroad


Texel, Netherlands

Signs at the Entrance of the Schipbreuk- en Juttersmuseum FloraTeso to TexelHeath & BiertjesTeso to TexelFlower fieldFlags
Heath in the DunesBike in the dunesPaal 17 on TexelWhitney on TexelGloves & FinsLife rings
RopesSmiley face

Texel, Netherlands, a set on Flickr.

Today we took a day trip to Texel, an island in the North of Holland. We took an 1 1/2 hour train, a 20 minute ferry, then cycled for 30 minutes to the dunes, had lunch on the beach and went to an interesting museum that boasts a collection of items that have washed on the shores of Texel in the past 70 years. Did you know the number one hazard to navigation at sea is rogue containers that have fallen from ships? They float just below the surface and they’re steal… bad to run into one, but you never know what you’ll find inside if one washes ashore!



Little LambVolendam CoastlineSmallest beach everRamp upLamb & Sheep
Lamb & SheepPheasant

Volendam, a set on Flickr.

Today we took a little trip to Volendam. It’s about a 30 minute train ride and then another 30 minute cycle. We saw some lambs and possibly the smallest beach ever…

Frozen Amsterdam

It’s so cold here in Amsterdam that the canals are freezing! We went into town and walked on the frozen Prinsengracht today.

Someone set up a hot chocolate, lentil soup and sandwich stand on the ice. People were walking their kids in buggies and even some dogs were out on the ice to have some fun!

Dog on ice   Hot chocolate stand
   Dog on ice.

Frozen Amsterdam, a set on Flickr.

Our Pirate Ship Mural

While Heath’s mom was visiting she took some time to create this mural on our wall.

The cat pirate flag.

W & H. Can you spot the cat? 🙂

One step closer to gills

Friday night Heath and I had the opportunity to try out full face masks underwater.

With these you can hook up communication devices and talk to each other – as if breathing underwater wasn’t crazy enough! Heath is already certified, but this was my first time. I learned how to properly don the mask and even how to take it off and put it back on underwater. We’re now ready for the Abyss… and able to let each other know when a shark is heading our way!

The new Rainbow Warrior

Yesterday in Bremerhaven, Gremany Greenpeace launched the new Rainbow Warrior III.  She’s a purpose-built motor-assisted sailing yacht specifically designed for environmental campaigning. She’s one of the greenest ships afloat now – all materials, from the paintwork to the insulation, have been chosen with a view to sustainability, and each component has been supplied with transparent ethical sourcing. At full sail she can travel at 14 knots.

She’s a beautiful ship and it was great to be at the ceremony. I hope one day to be able to sail with her!

54 meters of mast!

Al Jazeera covers the launch:

Broek in Waterland

Canoe houseFranca & KarenThe journey beginsSmall windmillStuck in the mud
MooPicnicTaking a break

Kayaking in Broek in Waterland, a set on Flickr.

Back in July we went kayaking/canoeing with a couple friends in Broek in Waterland (Pants in Water Country). It’s about 12km north of Amsterdam.