Thursday, April 30, 2009

Queen’s Day in Maastricht

First, my warm thoughts and sincere sympathy to those affected by today’s incident in Apeldoorn.


Queen’s Day was a quiet affair in Maastricht.  The Maas did not fill with drunken sailors (only a few jet skis and motor yachts).  There was no dancing in the streets. Orange was applied as an accent to shop windows, rather than as a base.

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As a result, I spent the holiday quietly catching up with friends by e-mail,  learning cURL, and reading.  Yep, I’m a fun date today…

  So, as the sun sets and the band across the river launches into “Radar Love”,  I’ll turn, instead, to answering Isabella’s holiday questions at Touch of Dutch:

  • Are you living in the Netherlands or outside of the Netherlands?
    • Inside, but only by a few km.
  • Tell about why you celebrate Queen's Day.
    • There’s a bit of a feeling of Memorial Day weekend in the air; it’s a work holiday and there’s warm sunshine and music in the park.  So, my temptation is to get out and welcome spring with a blanket on the grass, a beer, and a picnic.
    • It’s also the first celebration since Carnivale… (maybe everyone is still recovering)
  • Tell about how you celebrate Queen's Day.
    • It appears to be a very quiet celebration here in Maastricht: the southerners may not be the Royalists that the northerners are.  A quick tour around town revealed…nothing. Vrijthof Square was deserted, both at midnight (below) and mid-day.2009 Queens Day 01
    • The sidewalk bars and cafe’s appeared to be about half-full.  There were few orange boas or orange glasses; few signs or flags to mark the day.
    • There was, however, a small parade across the stone bridge about 11 am, disrupted when the span was raised to accommodate an oversized barge.

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  • What are your favorite activities/foods you share on Queen's Day.
    • <gulp> I confess to leaving the balcony door open and letting the music and the breeze waft through while I caught up on computer-geek stuff.
    • I did like watching the boats.
    • I hoped for, but didn’t find, oliebollen.
    • I refused to drink Kriek (cherry beer, a summertime favorite).
  • Photographs!   Music in the park;  a band on the street

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A Touch of Dutch said...

Thank you very much for doing this, Dave! Next year your list with photos will be up in the top of my Queen's Day blog post :-)

Dave Hampton said...

Deal; I hope that the traditions come back. They cancelled the fireworks here last night in respect for what happened up north: it may be one reason things were so quiet in the evening.