It’s been a while since the last update, it seems. And with good reason, lots of things have happened. But, now I am finally at home, relaxed, recovering (fingers crossed) from a slight illness, so time to type up some events :)
My parents celebrated their 60th birthdays at the beginning of this year. Us kids thought long and hard to come up with a nice gift. It wasn’t easy, but then we hit upon a good idea: we’d take them to a musical of their choice.
Of course, in the Netherlands, a choice means either Scheveningen or Utrecht. Ow, or the Efteling theatre (and I’m probably doing a disservice to some travelling musicals in NL, but the point is clear, methinks). In short, there is no real “choice” in NL. However, we’re not bound to the Netherlands. In fact, the musical capital of the world, London’s West End, is only a short flight from Eindhoven airport. So we offered them a trip to London, and dinner and a show on West End.
As we’d all join, we had to juggle five calendars, which meant this trip was postponed till after the summer (and planned long in advance). My parents opted to go by train, and Anke and Rogier joined them. I’ve done the train journey before, and while it is nice, it takes so long, I prefer to fly (direct connection London-Lux). Since I left roughly at the same time as the others, I was in a London bookstore, shopping and browsing to my heart’s content, when their eurostar train was about to leave. Which gave me another few hours in the store… yummy!
At any rate, we all spent a few days in London, and had a blast. We went to see Les Miserables, which was a fair deal more upbeat than the trodden, steaming pile of desolate despair that I thought it would be after reading the story on Wikipedia. The day before that, Anke, Rogier and I chanced upon the Royal Albert Hall. We browsed the programme, to see if anything interesting would be on. There was — at least if you’re my mum :) So we surprised my mom&dad with tickets to that too, and they greatly enjoyed it :)
Two days after coming back from London, it was time for the (somewhat) annual Hoopje weekend: a weekend for the group of friends from Eindhoven. Ever since we finished studies and got ourselves jobs, we’ve drifted apart a bit. Different calendars, even harder to juggle. So someone had the bright idea to suggest a weekend to ourselves. And so we have, for a few years now. It is a great opportunity to meet everyone again. And things (people) have changed: couples came, got married, got kids. I drink less beer than before — hell, we all do (we took 10 crates, 8 remaining at the end… hmmms.) But it was good to be there and to see everyone, and to catch up some bits and pieces. Which reminds me: I ought to phone them more often. I played a bit of a PS3 tower defence game, and a lot of guitar. All of which was fun, but not as much as seeing everyone there and seeing them go about their business, but happy to be there.
Fast forward one weekend, and we’re at today and Ronald’s visit. Ronald called me at one point, with the goal of picking a date for a visit. We managed, and so I called him on Wednesday eve to arrange final details. During that call, he let it slip he was off from work on Thursday and Friday as well, so I promptly invited him over for those days. I was lucky, in that his plans could be done on Thursday, and so he arrived Thursday evening. He bravely joined for my dance/sports/aerobics class (we were doing the part from 00:16-00:40 — and no it doesn’t look anything like that when I attempt to move my body). That was quite brave of him, since we were in week 5 (not that I informed him beforehand though ;-). Other than that, we had a very good time with a cheese fondue evening (yummy) and we even played a bit of Super Mario Galaxy 2 (long time no play! Fun!). Of course, we also went shopping and almost bought yet another: guitar (me) and a playmobil Christmas nativity set (him). In the end, we constrained ourselves because we both had these toys already. However, we might still succumb to seduction :)
Before he left, Ronald even managed to (1) fix my couch (Rogier: take note, it doesn’t slide anymore — you’ll love it) and (2) fix the rack in my garage that was wonky. So now I have another set of happy memories, good discussions (cheese fondue was fun :) and a better couch and more storage space. Very happy me!