Maas[trychnine]

7/18/10   –   10:24

Note: Maastricht doesn’t really kill small animals. I just couldn’t think of a title and that name just lends to really bad puns.

Woke up at around 9 today [in contrast to yesterday’s 7:45] and the first order of business was to get a haircut. And the place for that, seeing as I don’t speak Dutch, was the American base in Schinnen. While walking there, Gregg pointed out some animals in the fields. Domesticated rabbits. Ok. Domesticated deer. Hm. Domesticated ostriches. Yeah. Really. “Never be surprised by anything you see the Dutch doing.” For real. They’re oddballs, yo. Lol.

It was my first time on a military installment, and as such, the first time I’ve been on American soil in about 2 months. So I got my haircut, and I had immediate culture shock because the price was 14. I’m like. 14 euro? No 14 dollars. I had to get used to paying with the greens again [and tipping]. I got my change back and the feeling of quarters in my pocket was so strange after weeks of these oddly-sized euro coins. Gregg showed me around afterwards. It was pretty awesome. There were fighter jets and aliens and everything. Well. Not really, but that’s what he told me to tell everyone else because the base is actually tiny and consists of several large concrete buildings, a bowling alley, a thrift store, and a supermarket where he works. I’d have pictures but I didn’t know if it’d be prudent to take photos on a military installment. Apparently the military police can make you disappear. I hear there was a law passed that allows them to inter you indefinitely. :x

Afterwards, Gregg went to work and I went to Maastricht. It’s a town around half an hour away by train and you’ve probably only heard about it because of the Maastricht Treaty, signed in 1992 that created the European Union as we know it. Its a quiet town and very nice to walk around. I went to the main square and got some more pommes frites with a sauce called zuurglees. Yeah. It sounds sort of nasty and it looks a little strange because it’s like beef stroganoff. But then they put frite sauce on it. So… yeah. It doesn’t look too appetizing, but I swear it’s good. Lol.

I ate that under the town hall’s carillon tower while it played “Tears in Heaven,” carillon style. Haha. It makes me excited for a time when I can play things like the Pokémon theme on Century Tower. But the studio director will probably make me play traditional stuff for a while, which I don’t have a problem with.

I went to the local grocery store, Albert Heijn, and searched for a drink. Lo and behold. New fanta flavor! :D It’s called cassis fanta. [What is cassis anyway?] It tasted like something you would get from Fresh Market. Or World Market [which makes sense.] Not my favorite but still interesting. For the curious: Horrah for wikipedia!

In another one of the squares, it was completely covered in chairs set up in front of a stage. I look up at one of the windows on the buildings surrounding there and there’s a flag advertising a concert by André Rieu. My first thought was: “André Rieu is playing in Maastricht?!” I used to watch that guy’s concerts all the time whenever he was on PBS. It would’ve been cool to watch it live, but it’s probably hella expensive and will probably also occur when I am no longer in the Netherlands.

Further walking around took me to a sign saying watermoelen. I soon found out that this does not mean watermelon. Despite this linguistic slip-up, it was cool anyway. There was a fully functioning water-mill that grinds the flour supplying the bakery next door. Awesome.

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I went to the 1992-plein which is a plaza dedicated to the Maastricht Treaty. There was a huge Albert Heijn store in the plaza so I engaged in my favorite pastime: supermarket wanderings. I’d have to say that it was the most amusing grocery experience yet, because Dutch is such a strage language. I wanted to get yogut, but the only thing in their dairy section was either drinkable yogurt [no] and something called vla. Vla. Schokolade vla. Vanilla vla. I was hoping that it was yogurt and took my chances with the chocolate vla. I picked up a box of coconut macaroons, a pear-flavored popsicle, and a drink, which I will get to next.

I learned three things from my lunch in the plaza in Maastricht:

1) Vla is not yogurt. It’s pudding.

2) I like pear-flavored things and I lament at the fact that pear is not a popular flavor in America.

3) This is the most important lesson of the day. The Dutch be so thug, they don’t drink gatorade. They have Sport Drank. Lmao.

Upon my return, Gregg met me at the station and we chilled at his house for a while before heading to the local pub with his brother and his neighbor, Colton. We tried the sub-zero Heineken served in the frozen glasses and played billiards and darts for shots of Jager. You know, traveling like this makes you learn a lot about yourself, like the fact that I really suck at pool and suck only slightly less at darts. We paid the tab and returned to do some good old fashioned movie drinking games. Except it turned out more like drinking while watching a movie. Colton came in through the second-story window [bad-ass] and brought over some Smirnoff [mmmm tastes like college] and I downed my tiny bottle of Jager from Germany [because I can’t bring that stuff home on the plane.] Don’t mess with the Zohan, yo.

~ ~

We woke up at around 10:30 this morning. Gregg couldn’t get a train ticket to go to Amsterdam today because they were sold out so I’m gonna spend a lazy Sunday doing upkeep like laundry. I heard plans of maybe going to Sittard later, but we’ll see if that pulls through.

– Out for now.

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Comments
2 Responses to “Maas[trychnine]”
  1. Sandra says:

    You should write about how your mom won’t answer my calls and how your family ≠ love you. Ahuuuuuuuuhuuuhuuuuh. jk. [I hope].

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