#TBT: Hunebedden Edition

Here’s a throwback all the way from 1991. If you haven’t seen the article of hilariously recreated childhood photos, check it out here! I decided to do my own version while I was in the Netherlands…

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And in 2013…

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Now, about the Hunebedden. Well everyone knows that England has Stonehenge, but did you know that there is a whole cluster of ruins that is even older, in the north of the Netherlands? There are approximately 54 sets, with 52 of them just in the province of Drenthe. They are over 5000 years old and, just like Stonehenge, no one knows exactly how or why they were built. The plaque near this particular site says that Napolean rode his horse across the top of these ruins in order to demonstrate his superior horsemanship.

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I wouldn’t advise trying that yourself….

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This great website has a lot more Hunebedden information, for those that are interested.

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Just one of the many reasons why everyone should see more of the Netherlands than just Amsterdam!

International Goodbyes

Saying “goodbye” can be awkward, because it’s hard to choose what the appropriate form of farewell is. In the US, you have three different options and that’s already too many.

Type 1 – If it’s family or good friends, you probably hug.

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Type 2 – If it’s a more professional relationship or someone you just met, you might shake hands.

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Type 3 – If it’s somewhere in between those, you might bring out the awkward wave (my personal favorite).

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Travelers tend to meet a lot of people. They could be your roommates, people you met out in the common area of a hostel or at some social event. You could have been with them as little as one breakfast sitting, or maybe they’ve been your “explore the city buddy” for the past few days. You’ve exchanged emails or are now Facebook BFFs and are about to head your separate ways. As I said previously, I already have three possible goodbye options, but I’m really in trouble when traveling internationally. For instance, Dutch people kiss three times alternating cheeks. Hispanic people often do the same, but only twice. It has also become trendy, in some places, to say hello and goodbye with one cheek kiss. Other cultures value their personal space and don’t want touching to be involved at all.

I have an outstanding ability to be clumsy and awkward whenever possible, so that’s just too easy of a set up for something embarrassing to happen. When someone steps towards you to say bye, are they coming in for a hug or a predetermined set of cheek kisses? How many cheek kisses? On what side do you start the cheek kissing process? You know the awkward dance people do when they’re passing in a hallway and they keep trying to let the other one pass? Then it turns into some sort of really klutzy waltz. Now imagine that in even closer range, but with only your faces as you try to kiss the other persons cheek. It’s the stuff of nightmares.

Can someone with more authority than I possess please come up with some sort of internationally accepted, general goodbye?? I suppose it couldn’t hurt to just ask, “How do they typically say goodbye where you’re from?” but that’s just too sensible.

Am I the only one who’s felt this way before?? Tell me your stories!

A Coronation, a Road Trip and Your Suggestions!

For all of us Dutchies out there, don’t forget to wear your orange today! There’s a new King in the Netherlands for the first time in over a century!

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The shirt really is orange, I promise. Two Thumbs up for the House of Orange!

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In other news, tomorrow I leave for Tennessee…

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I’ll be staying within the triangle of Nashville, Knoxville and Chattanooga. I think we’ll be heading right to Nashville to catch the memorial service for George Jones on Thursday. For live updates, be sure to follow me on Twitter and Instagram. Other than that, I want your suggestions! Where should I go? What should I see? Are there any good races happening? What things are purely Tennessee, that we definitely should not miss?? I can’t wait to hear your thoughts!

Multilingual Mom Problems..

Your mom might speak more than one language if…

She gets home from the Netherlands you have a conversation like this:

*Gets back from running and finds mom lying down in her room.*

Mom: “says something in Dutch that I don’t understand.”

Me: “I just got back. Sorry, did I wake you?”

Mom: “A few more Dutch sentences that I don’t understand.”

Me: “Ok…. I don’t know what you just said…”

Mom: “…more Dutch.”

Me: “Ok well I’m going to go take a shower.”

Mom: “Goed.” (Good in Dutch)

This happens every time and it is still so funny to me. I can expect that she will call me by her younger sister’s name at least three times, before she fully becomes Florida Mom again. Love you, Mom! 🙂