Monday, July 29, 2013

Introductions, Dining and Franeker

Well, Amsterdam didn't happen.  Once we started mapping out the day, it would have taken us 3 hours to get there, to spend 6, to travel 3 more home, to get in at a good time (he works today).  We were sad about it, but it just wasn't realistic.  Amsterdam is a place that when you travel, you need to spend it overnight.  At least for us.  Or, have a car, drive part way to a city centre then take the train the rest of the way in.  Having no car, we'll have to go with option #1.

So, we made different plans.  Having events change in the morning, we spent part of the day with his kids & ex.  I got to meet everyone all at once for the first time.  Yaaaaaaay.  *cough*  Well, with 3 kids it can be very tiring, but it was a good visit.  They took to me very well; especially his oldest.  That was nice.

After that visit, we went to Franeker where there is the Eise Eisinga Planetarium museum (linked in English).  Quick history: this planeterium is the oldest working planeterium in the world.  Very small as it's based out of the man's house (or what would have been his house at the time).  He understood how the stars and planets worked, and when people were in fear of the world ending (as was thought at the time), he actually built a working solar system in his living room to show people that it wasn't - and why/how.  He cared about calming the masses and we thought that was a pretty special trait to have.  All the little cogs in the working solar system were made by hand, all hand-forged nails (10,000 to be exact).  Wiki shows you a couple pictures, but I went to the museum's website and it showed on more of the inner workings of the cog/weight system (if you view it in Dutch it shows even more pictures, not sure why. P. S - Google Chrome is your friend).

After getting some rich history, I started to feel ill and needed to eat.  W. asked the woman if she could advise any places in the area.  We ended up going to an inn just down the street.  I really enjoyed this place and would like to go back.

This view was was side of the footbridge we crossed to get to the inn.  Note the steep banks on the left, which would have been defence mechanisms for the town from the canals. 

This is the inn, the view on the other side of the footbridge.  Their seating area goes right down to the water (to the right) - and that's where we got to sit!  

This dining experience was absolutely lovely.  Dining in Europe is way different than back home.  Back home it's.... come in, get addressed within 30 seconds (on a good day), order, eat, leave so the next people can come in.  It's all about turnover.  Here.. it's sit, relax for a few minutes.  A minute or two later your server comes to ask if you'd like anything to drink, if you're there to eat (if you want a menu).  Menu is brought, we look it over and eventually order. They really leave you to relax and enjoy the entire meal.  If you're not expecting this, to a North American, it could seem as very slow service.   First we were brought tapas (if we'd known they were bringing this, we wouldn't have ordered appetizers).

Sorry, I took the picture after we started eating it :/  Note my glass of lemon water (holy lemons, batman. That's what I call service) to the right.  It comes with a stick, which apparently quite common.  At the end of the stick is a flat peice TO GET MORE JUICE OUT OF YOUR LEMON WITHOUT HAVING TO TOUCH IT.  Also, to keep it at the bottom when you drink, if you so choose.  Y'all in North American need to get on that.  If they exist, I haven't once seen where.  And I order a lot of water. 

Apps and dinner were perfectly times apart (we got the house steak) and were very good. Then came dessert.  Sweet holy Jesus.  They didn't have anything on the menu I could have (dairy-free) so I got a coffee.  He got strawberry tiramisu.  

This was our dessert spread.  My coffee came with various sugars and bon-bons.  There's another tiramisu above my coffee that we didn't order but weren't sure if it was part of the whole "comes with bon-bons" thing.  We ate it anyways :P

Check out the layering of that coffee.  Impressive.  

W.'s tiramisu, strawberries, (real) whipped cream and a strawberry liqeur.  Yum.

The sun was out that afternoon and it was hot, though there was a cool breeze (it was perfect).  While the sun was very hot, the UV index was only... 1.  I'm not even lying.  We were there for almost 2.5 hours and I didn't even turn pink.  If we'd done that back home, I would have been walking home with 2nd degree burns.  

More than pleasantly sated (we were stuffed), we headed home after a very long day.  Let's just say we slept very well last night. 

1 comment:

hydra said...

I would LOVE to eat at the inn. And I am so impressed with the lemon stick!

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