I heard it was going to be almost 20 degrees Celsius today and I didn’t quite believe that. It was and it was sunny. In the conversion to all of the metric measurements here, Celsius and Fahrenheit are the only two that I have memorized. Probably because they involve multiplication, fractions, division and then addition or subtraction depending on which direction you are going. After trying to keep all of those numbers in order, the rest don’t really seem to matter as much. Perhaps I can aspire to learning one conversion formula a week and practicing it until becomes second nature.
I’ve been going into the new office the past two days. It has been pretty great. There’s not much of a bigger thrill for me than looking up from my computer to see jumbo jets taking off for all kinds of exotic destinations. Amsterdam Schiphol really is a cross roads. I don’t think there are many places you cannot get to from here. I’ve enjoyed meeting lots of people and learning many key new phrases. My current favorite is “broodje aap” which means urban legend but actually literally translates to “monkey sandwich”. I predict that I will be using this expression ALOT.
Tomorrow is a full day of bureaucratic visits. It starts with Immigration and goes on from there. By dinner time tomorrow, I should be officially registered, barcoded, scanned more than once and perhaps even had a mental fitness tune up. I expect that I will also have been exposed to more three letter acronyms than are good for you. Luckily, Jo is coming along so I will have someone to either get me into or out of trouble depending on the language barrier.
I also signed the lease contract today so things are moving along smoothly there. I guess there’s no going back now! Of course, I still need keys. I have, however, already started window shopping for my Nespresso coffee maker. As I found out this afternoon, the one I want to buy is not only 90 euros off but if I wait until the 1st of November I get a 5% bonus back. And I won’t have to carry it back and forth in my suitcase.
It is a very Dutch thing to do your daily grocery shopping. My mom never changed this habit and when I would think about the amount of time and gas that went into it, it would drive me nuts. I am a big proponent of efficiency. Well, it didn’t take long after landing here that I too have ended up going grocery shopping every other day. I can’t quite get down to the daily frequency. And every time I grab my shopping bag and start walking to the local grocery store, I am pretty sure my mom would be smirking at me saying “Told you so”. And today I really went all out. After shopping for dinner tonight, I stopped and had a tiny cup of coffee, sitting down instead of taking it to go. I am learning also to accept that stores don’t get restocked every day or even every other day and then you just choose something else. This is definitely messing with my habit of routine menus. It reminds me of my mother saying that she didn’t even know what she wanted for dinner tonight so why would she shop for the week?