24.05.2013 - 24.05.2013 12 °C
Today was our second full day in Holland. As some of you may know, we've had a few house troubles, but thankfully we were able to reach an agreement with our hosts. Today we planned to rent some bikes and cycle around the nearby town. However, when we got to the train station we found that there were no attendants to be found, and we were out of luck. We walked around town in the sunshine for a while though, and did a couple days worth of grocery shopping while we were at it. At the grocery store we picked up some common Dutch foods such as speculaas cookies, stroopwafels, and hagelslag. As we left it started to rain on us so we hurried back to our car. From here we went back home again, and spent most of our afternoon planning for the next parts of the trip. Tomorrow we plan to spend time with some of my dad's relatives.
Although we haven't been here long I'm starting to like the Netherlands and the people here, who are always very friendly. The area that we are staying in is next to a small village, and a canal runs right in front of our house. There are often children running down the street when school is over, and one of them even caught a duck and came to show us the other day. I'm excited to go to Amsterdam, which is what we have been planning for the most here, as lots of the other days will be spent with extended family.
A little info from Wikipedia about hagelslag:
Dutch hagelslag (chocolate sprinkles) was first invented in 1936 by Gerard de Vries for Venz, a Dutch company made popular by said treat. Hagelslag is used on bread. Most of the time butter is spread out so the hagelslag does not fall off. Several letters to Venz from a five-year-old boy, H. Bakker, asking for a chocolate bread topping, inspired and prompted de Vries' development of sprinkles. After much research and venture, de Vries and Venz created the first machine to produce the tiny cylindrical treats. They were named "Hagelslag" after their resemblance to a weather phenomenon prominent in the Netherlands, hail. Only hagelslag with a cacao percentage of more than 35 can bear the name chocolat hagelslag. If the percentage is under the 35%, it has to be called cacao fantasy hagelslag.