ROAD TRIP

I recently had an adventure. I caution you that this might be just too exciting for you, so be prepared. History was made as I went on a road trip to downtown Utrecht by taking public transportation. I had an appointment at the main library in Utrecht and it is a challenge to park there, and it is also expensive. So the brave decision was made to take the bus. The bus stop is around the corner from our house, so that was not a big deal. Why has it taken so long for me to take a bus? Well, it is kind of complicated, but the easy answer is that I have never been a fan of buses and have not had the need to take too many bus trips in my life. But here, in The Netherlands, it is normal and necessary.

Okay, so I get on the bus and was lucky enough to get a seat. What I noticed right away was that the heat was on, which made no sense. It was a beautiful fall day and not cold at all. This bus would take us to the central train station in Utrecht and from there we would take a second bus (a short ride) to get closer to the library. This first bus trip lasted 15-20 minutes but it felt longer as it was so HOT. I felt like a blueberry muffin that was ready to come out of the oven. When we arrived in Utrecht, the second bus was crowded and there were no seats. So I held on to the handles like I was in the boat of Life of Pi, the bus was rocking and rolling as we went through the city. Just as I was thinking that I should have taken a motion sickness pill, we arrived at our stop.

This is a beautiful area of the city and I fall in love with it each time I come here. Photographs cannot do it justice. The buildings are older than mud, and they still look wonderful to me. After the meeting, we went across the street for lunch to the Winkel van Sinkel. When I saw this building, the name just made me smile. It used to be a department store and it is now a large restaurant. When you leave the library you are looking at the canal and it such a “Dutch” view.

The two return bus trips were not as pleasant as the first two, and that says something. The short trip was standing room only and it was packed. The priceless moment was when a guy stepped onto the bus carrying a surfboard and he had to figure out how to hold on to it and get it out of people’s way, which he did. Seeing that surfboard just confirmed for me that the bus rides were like a stormy boat trip, and I am famous for getting sea sick. This bus also had the heat on and as the bus got more crowded, it felt like it was getting hotter. When we finally arrived at our bus stop, I was just so happy to breathe fresh air and cool down.

Here are some photos from my grand adventure, I really just wanted to show you a little part of  Utrecht.

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This is the view coming out of the Central Library

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Winkel van Sinkel

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Utrecht Central Library and the Dom Tower

Recommended viewing: THE KINGS OF SUMMER. A really charming independent film about teenage friendship and the complicated relationships between parent and child. It is funny and poignant.

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Comments

  • krunn7  On October 21, 2013 at 9:36 pm

    No wonder folk you have come here to live from the Netherlands have to keep going back for a fix. Thanks for the free tourist trip.

  • Sumitr  On October 21, 2013 at 11:15 pm

    Beautiful!

  • LadyGregory  On October 22, 2013 at 1:22 am

    I enjoyed this bus story so much. I’m totally intimidated by European public transportation and go out of my way to avoid it. In Holland a couple of years ago we gritted our teeth and took the bus out to the airport to transfer to the bus to the Keukenhof. It was easy, cheap, and not crowded (last day of the gardens). Utrecht looks like a dream. Looks like a “must” for my bucket list.

  • Shers Gallagher  On October 22, 2013 at 9:12 am

    How lovely, Jane. Isn’t Utrecht a beautiful city? I occasionally frequented the hogeschool not too far from the station. Old Utrecht is such a beautiful section with its lovely canals and such.

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