A castle & brown eyes

First off, my vertigo is subsiding, woohoo!! Not all gone yet, but definitely improving. This means that on Sunday, after visiting my mother, I was well enough to take a day trip with my daughter and we visited my old boarding school which used to be situated in a castle near Utrecht. In my day (35-33 years ago… that sounds so old and long ago!) it all looked a bit different – in the second picture with the red arrow is the ‘Blokhut’ where I used to board with the school nurse and 4 other girls.

Mini me was curious about my boarding school years and as the grounds were open, we were able to walk around and look around. I always loved the driveway up to the castle and it still looks lovely…

The old coach house was still looking good from the outside, it used to be the girls dorm, where most of the girls lived…

There used to be a little wooden building to the left of the coach house that we used to call “The Chambre”. There we could buy evening snacks, play some pool (although I rarely did that) and socialize; it is completely in ruins now…

To the right of the coach house, the “Blokhut” was situated where I used to live. I first thought it was not there anymore as it is now almost obscured from view by shrubbery overgrowing it. I remember it like this (red arrow is pointing to my room)…

On Sunday the Blokhut looked like this… Only when we came up close could we see the entrance, the side of the building where I’d lived was only partially accessible around the back. Through the door I could look into the hall but my old bedroom window was boarded up.

The castle itself was still very pretty (although I don’t like the white plaster as much, it used to be all red brick)…

It was a lovely trip down memory lane and now my daughter wants to go to boarding school as well (even though I told her that boarding school also had its downsides).

The kids have spring break this week and I am off for the most part as well. Today Mr Esther and I decided to go for a walk somewhere further east and Junior was the one to join us for a change. He’s pretty busy normally with school or his girlfriend, but today, while mini me decided to spend the day with a friend, he had no plans. He decided to join us for our walk and it was lovely to have him alone with us for a whole afternoon for a change.

Besides vertigo, work and socially distanced outings here and there, I’ve been keeping busy with the Sue Thomas obsession, making two fan videos (now also up on the Sue Thomas video page that I set up).

I’ve also been re-watching bits and pieces of Suits again as Yannick Bisson’s brown eyes made me long for Gabriel Macht’s brown eyes again. I still love how the character of Harvey Specter developed and changed in the nine seasons that the show had.

Bisson’s Murdoch Mysteries season 14 is now airing, so I’m also watching the new episodes of that show as they come out. Nothing too challenging but a lot of fun, especially last night’s episode with the return of the whacko Newsome family.

I swear, I’d watch a spinoff sitcom with just Ruth Newsome-Higgins (Siobhan Murphy, a character that was introduced in season 10 and appears occasionally), she’s brilliant.

Another thing that has me fascinated is the Mars landing and the images coming from there…

Following NASA Perseverance on Twitter is cool.

Speaking of space, I know, I know that I should watch Richard Armitage’s new movie Space Sweepers over on Netflix, but I can’t quite make myself do so yet. While I enjoy some scifi, it’s not my go to genre and Richard’s role isn’t that huge, is it?

I’ll watch in time, maybe someone in the comments can let me know if it’s worth it? Maybe if his eyes were brown (my current obsession is kind, brown eyes) like in My Zoe I would be more tempted? Although, I admit that seeing brown eyes on Richard instead of his blue eyes is a little weird to me.

When I’m in obsession mode, normal online activities fall by the wayside, which means I have a huge backlog of blog reading to do. I don’t think I can or will promise to catch up on all, so my sincere apologies to those readers who are used to me commenting on their blogs! I’ll probably start coming around again more but not this evening, I have some more brown eyes that I need to get lost in after I post this…

Winter to spring in a week

A week ago, my husband was skating on the ice and it was -6 degrees Celsius, today it’s +16 degrees Celsius and it feels like spring! Mr Esther and I were sitting without coats in our front garden where our cat came to visit as did a ladybug. I was leaning forward, fiddling on the phone and inadvertently took a selfie mid chat and decided to share it as well, as it shows the nice blue sky through our tree.

What a difference a week makes!

Last day of ice

We wanted to take in the ice today before it all starts melting away again. Thawing temperatures have already started, so pretty soon the ice won’t be any good to stand on anymore. Mr. Esther, mini-me and I decided to drop off my younger brother who had spent the night at our house and then drive on to Delft, which is close to where my brother is now staying. Delft always is a little special to us, as we got married there. Anyway, once there, we saw that the ice was not very good anymore in many places, the thawing had already begun. Some people did still go out on the ice, but it wasn’t busy on the canals in the center by any means…

We stopped in the central square between the old city hall (where we got married) and the old church where several of our kings and queens are buried and picked up a hot drink and poffertjes (these mini pancakes with some butter and powdered sugar). Due to Covid 19 restrictions we couldn’t sit anywhere, so we had to drink and eat standing up. It was quite funny to see groups of people standing separate from each other in the square, wanting to be out but also keeping a distance from each other in small, restricted groups.

Businesses are trying to stay afloat during the Corona restrictions where only food and essential shops are allowed to be open. I saw a souvenir shop with a sign in the window saying you could order online and they would deliver orders (free of charge) in a 5 km radius. Another shop said to take a picture of the window display and then e-mail or phone your order in if you wanted to buy anything from that display. Our parking garage ticket also warned us to keep a 1.5 meter distance to others, using a famous Delftware kissing statue as their image, keeping the kissers apart…

We walked around Delft for about an hour, then drove home. We needed a few groceries which I said I’d do, in defiance of the worsening vertigo. Reclining on a couch so much is taking it’s toll and I just wanted to be moving a bit more. I took a very small detour to the shop (saw a heron on my path as well) so that I could take a peek at the frozen pond near our house before getting those groceries. Now, with the vertigo more prominent after all that activity, I’m back to reclining on the couch again.

It’s been a lovely Sunday and I’m off to chocolate eyed Yannick Bisson land again after I post this (I’ve been avoiding disappointing impeachment politics in the US with Yannick). Seriously, those big brown eyes with the thick lashes surrounding them do something to me, they are so full of expression and warmth…

I even made a fan video of his old Sue Thomas F.B.Eye show a few days ago…

… and am working on another one, so this Sunday also looks to be ending very nicely.

Frozen canals

The Netherlands is caught in winter weather and ice fever right now. The canals freeze and everyone takes to the ice. I don’t skate, have never really been able to and won’t learn now with my vertigo, but I do love the seeing all the skaters on the ice. My husband can skate, as can my kids, and on Friday Mr Esther and mini-me braved the ice together…

Today Mr Esther went skating on his own and sent me this…

Tomorrow we’ll have one more day of ice, after that it will start thawing and all this will be over again. It’s been beautiful while it lasted.

Winter has come

It doesn’t snow often here and the past few winters have only on occasion given us a dusting here and there, but yesterday evening and last night, we got some real snow (and yes, we still have twinkle lights up in our garden as the evenings come so early here in winter)…

And it’s still snowing today, which has made it all somewhat thicker…

Mr Esther and I took a little walk through the snow while Junior is away with his girlfriend for the weekend and mini-me had enough of the snow after she had a little fun with it around our house…

It was a bit of a test for my vertigo and I’m back to reclining on my couch again but it was a lot of fun nonetheless. The snow is too powdery for snowballs or snowmen but maybe that will change as the week progresses? The forecast is that it will remain this cold for at least the rest of this week. It’s different for my brother in the southern tip of Israel. While we were sharing snow pictures in our family chat, he shared this view from the kibbutz where he lives…

That feels like a different world and, although I am enjoying our snow world right now, it also makes me long to travel again.