Pete and Repeat – The Amsterdam Version

It is no secret that I love Holland. Always did.

I lived in Zwolle for a year on a Rotary Exchange. I went to school  where I was placed in Grade 1 for Dutch class and Grade 12 for English class. That is until the English teacher heard me talk with my Canadian accent and then I was told to no longer speak in class. Apparently I was corrupting the class. Regardless, I learned to be a little Dutch and became a more outspoken, liberal and scarf wearing version of my previous self.

When I returned to Canada, I was officially hooked on Dutch cheese, poffertjes,stroopwafels, dropjes (black kind of licorice) and pannekoeken. So it was no surprise that these foods were introduced to Jade early on. In fact, Santa regularly brought some each Christmas. Having a bit of a sweet tooth like her mother, Jade began to dream of the day she would go to Holland.

And when her dream came true, Holland did not disappoint.

Jade roamed Amsterdam like a Dutch girl (well at least after she went the market and bought herself some European clothes to fit more in). She is tall, blonde, liberal and yes, a tad outspoken like her mother. She draws the line however at scarves.

It was like watching myself a million years ago. Amsterdam was again, love at first sight. And really… who can blame us? It really is a great place to be.

Learning Dutch The Embarrassing Way

When I first moved to Zwolle, The Netherlands, I needed to learn Dutch. I was living with a Dutch family and going to high school. It was pretty tiring in the beginning so some words were more important than others. “Tired” being one of them as I was always tired; especially from the language.

However… here is the kicker…instead of saying I am tired though I kept saying to everyone that I was pretty. So my nightly sentence was “I am pretty so I need to go to sleep.” It was awhile until I learned my mistake and I was so embarrassed.

Mooi – pretty

Moe – tired

Not the same. Oh well. I did learn to speak Dutch and I loved it! I also learned how to ride a bike in all kinds of weather; including snow and ice. When I recently returned to Amsterdam, I realized sadly that I probably had lost both skills, Dutch and my skilled bike riding. Maybe another reason to return and stay longer next time?