Sunday, 6 January 2013

New Year in The Netherlands

What an adventure!  Having got very last minute flights using my airmiles, I headed off to Nijmegen (via Amsterdam Schiphol airport) on 30th December.  I'd inadvertantly booked myself into business class, so at Heathrow I was able to enter the hallowed halls of the BA Club Lounge and hang out with all the rich old white guys.  Being able to board the plane first was weird, too: I had a brief moment of thinking, "wow, this is cool," but then I started feeling like a twat as I walked past all the standard class passengers*.

New Year's Eve itself was lovely; The Boy and I wandered around the town all afternoon, drinking tea and looking at secondhand books, then in the evening we ate dinner with his friends in the cafe downstairs from where he lives, then had drinks and watched a punk band in the venue in the basement of the building (the building is a story to itself: an old newspaper building that was once a squat, it's now an anarchist/vegan cafe and gig/club venue with communal living accomodation above: it is so awesome). 

At midnight, we all headed out onto the streets where the full craziness of a Netherlands NYE was revealed.  People light bonfires in the middle of the road and set fireworks off all over the place: the whole town was lit up with explosions.  For a Brit raised on health & safety lectures, it was pretty terrifying, but exciting too.

I didn't take any photographs at all, which is kind of a shame, but I wanted to just live it and enjoy it.  I promise that if I ever go back I'll be a better blogger!  But this is what I wrote on the plane on the way home; a mental snapshot, if you like:

* This was even more the case on the flight back on the 1st, when I had a proper New Year's Day hangover, teary eyes and a pair of underpants stamped on the back of my hand from the club the previous night. I stood out a mile in the business class section!