Thursday, December 04, 2014

Veere, NL: The Last "Trick" of 2014

Hold that thought, which I'll explain at the end.

Most of you know that the Thanksgiving holiday at the end of November is my hardest time to be away from family.  The way we've ended up "fixing" that is by Astrid taking that Friday off and having a long weekend to do something.  Besides, November 30th is the anniversary of our first meet-up in real life (2007), and December 5 (tomorrow) is the anniversary of when I moved to the Netherlands, on Sinterklaas (2009).

It's a good weekend to celebrate many things!

So, we decided to go to the Christmas market in Bruges, Belgium!  Lucky for us, Astrid found a 4-day, 3-night hotel (with breakfast) in Ostend, on the Belgium coast, 30 minutes west of Bruges...for a total of €154.  It was too good to be true.

But this post isn't about that.  This is about the day, Monday (yes, just 3 days ago), when we drove home and stopped in Veere, NL, in Zeeland Province.  I'm starting at the end, yes.

As we left Belgium, Astrid spotted the Kim Clijsters website advert (any tennis fans?).
And as we drove into the Netherlands from Holland, a windmill welcomed us HOME.

 Driving into Veere, our side-trip of the day, we came in and went out past this Grote Kerk from 1450,
in the middle of "rehabilitation."  We didn't even try to go inside.

We didn't want to stay long, eager to get home, but we wanted to get a feel for this small harbor city,
starting with the Tower from the sixteenth century, which once serviced as an Inn and coastal lighthouse. 
 It is now one of the oldest still-existing hostels in the Netherlands.

 It was freezing cold as we walked around the harbor.
It felt like winter weather had finally come to our part of the world!

We both had to "use the facility," so we stopped to eat at the Peter Bliek café.
Warm beenham sandwiches with hot latte macchiatos...just what the doctor ordered.

Then we went strolling around to see the magic.
This is the city hall from the 15th century,
whose carillon has been voted one of the prettiest in the Netherlands.

 Talk about charm oozing everywhere!

I "collected" the gable stones I found, of course.

And the weathervanes.  How could I resist!

After all that, we were back on our way home....

 ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Okay, now back to the last trick of the year!

A few of you know that I will have a left-knee replacement, scheduled for January 8th, allowing a full year's recovery (24 physical-therapy sessions) on my deductible (I'm not stupid).  It started with a volleyball injury back in 1971.  Two surgeries later, without any cartilage left, bone on arthritic get the picture.  It finally cried "UNCLE!"  Enough is enough.

So, we don't plan any other tricks trips for awhile, until I'm up and at it after the surgery.  The holidays are upon us, with miles to go before the end of the year.

In the meantime, I'll get three more posts done on the Belgium part of our wonderful long-weekend away:  Oostende/Ostend, Brugge/Bruges, and the longest tram ride in the world.  

Stay tuned!


  1. The last trick....... I am happy that we both survived it, just kidding of course. It was such a beautiful weekend, to end it in Veere was a delight. I never visited the city before and it is a darling little city.
    Cold, so cold, but we have been spoiled by the weather lately.
    Great pictures and I am impressed with the gevelstenen and the weather vanes.
    Wonderful post. And we already planned the next Thanksgiving weekend.....

    1. We are so lucky to have all these places so nearby (at least in American terms, ha!). You are such a perfect "partner in crimne" for me, understanding what I love and need. THANK YOU. I couldn't possible be a happier camper. Happy Anniversary. Has it really been 5 years I've lived in this beautiful country of yours???

  2. It's just incredible how much there is to explore that is deep with history and beauty!

  3. Those streets are so warm and cozy - I just want to step through the computer screen. Something tells me you will recover faster than you think. And it seems to me a drive isn't too hard - just hanging out the window with the camera would satisfy me - there is SO much beauty around you!

    1. My guess is that I will heal quickly, indeed, Margaret, because I am so motivated to do all my exercises. Half of the healing process starts in the head, right? :) And, yes, I don't expect anything to slow me down as regards getting out and about. There's much to see from the car alone, you're right.

  4. Oh I did not know about your knee so I will keep very good thoughts. I have had friends and relatives have their knees replaced and they bounced back quickly and they were not as spunky as I will keep good healing thoughts.

    Loved the city hall and I had never heard of gable stones...fascinating.

    1. I am very optimistic, Donna, about this surgery and expect a full and speedy recovery. I'm already doing all kinds of exercises to get my knee ready. Thanks for all your good wishes sent my way. I'm sure there will be a lot of pain, but many have gone before me, as you've said, and have made it through with flying colors. :)

  5. It just warms my heart when I read about your adventures together!! I will be thinking of you during your surgery and hope for a speedy (if there is such a thing!) recovery. But I do know you have a wonderful nurse by your side! xo

    1. Ohhh, thank you, Robin. I have the best nurse in the world, no doubt about it. I'm actually really looking forward to this surgery...not only to see how the Dutch do it but to see how it helps once I'm rehabilitated. I have a feeling I'll feel like a new-brand woman! :) Thanks for your thoughts on my behalf.