20 December 2009

snow in the netherlands

it is snowing in the netherlands - there's at least 10 cm in most places - and the world has turned delightfully white. as a canadian i'm pretty enthusiastic about it (and i'm looking forward to introducing my cat to it in a little while). for pictures, see Sneeuw in Den Haag, monday afternoon snow, and flights cancelled.

but as a canadian, i'm also a bit annoyed that the public transportation system seems to have problems functioning with even this little bit of snow. on thursday evening, my dinner date got cancelled cause Matthijs was stuck in Utrecht - he waited there a couple hours because of the snow.

and today it took me 3 hours to get home from Den Haag (what normally takes about 1.5 hours). i was scheduled to help out with the vespers at church - i figured if i gave myself an extra hour time, it should be fine. but it wasn't - first, i got out the door a bit late. then i discovered the trams weren't running - nor was the light rail train. so i walked to the train station (a lovely walk, made more impressive by all the snow men i saw along the way, but it was not so ideal for getting anywhere on time). i got to the station just in time to catch a stop train to Leiden. then i stepped into a train to Amsterdam, only to find out shortly that it wasn't going. 15 minutes later, into a stop train to Schiphol. and at Schiphol, 20 more minutes waiting before i could get to Amsterdam. and in my talks with other passengers (messes like this tend to make people more open to talking to each other - at least i never normally feel inclined to talk to others), i discovered that in comparison my experience with the trains was actually pretty good! much to my disappointment, i not only didn't make it home to help with the service, i wasn't even in time to attend the service.

but even with the mess that the snow is making of public transportation (and it's even worse with flights at Schiphol!), i'm delighting in the snow. on friday night, i ended up on the front step of a beautiful old house surrounded by woods covered in snow (we had a meeting there about communities). and i've been happily throwing snowballs for a few days now. and today i even made a snow angel. so what do i really have to complain about?

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