I am so in love with Holland. Today I got up bright and early and drove two hours to the city of Giethoorn. Giethoorn is a gorgeous Dutch village that has canals for streets.
As a side note, my face is getting really fat. The combination of Dutch and German food plus consuming beer or wine every early snack, lunch, dinner, and late night snack is turning me into a telletubby. I wasn’t even aware it was possible for my cheeks to look this chipmunk-like. I had to text my aunt (who’s a hairdresser/makeup artist) and ask her if she’s willing to do my makeup so my face look less obtuse for my graduation ceremony when I return to the states. On the plus side my boyfriend said he’ll still love me if I get fat so I guess I know he’s not basing his love on my looks primarily. Enough about my facet though… GIETHOORN!
We walked around for a little bit until we came to a coffee shop. I am SO spoiled by the people I’m staying with. I’m not even family and they won’t let me pay for a thing. They suggested we get coffee and we sat outside on these comfy black chairs. I tried to order a mocha but the Dutch waiter had no idea what I was saying and kept correcting me with “cappuccino?” I finally gave in and said that was just fine. The cappuccino was perfect though. It came with a little chocolate biscotti and there was a delicious froth on the top.
After coffee we went down to rent a boat. We decided against the giant tour boats that took up the entire canal and were stuffed with Chinese tourists waving selfie sticks around striving to achieve the perfect angle. We also decided against the punting boats full of pre-teens wobbling and tipping as other boats with inexperienced drivers smashed into them in the canals. We rented a small boat with a trolling motor. My friend Krista was volunteered to drive and she promptly got in and took off at top speed going the wrong way. She managed to smash into the side of the canal and her uncle ended up taking the motor to turn us around. I tried next. I had never driven a boat before so I was pretty excited to try in the narrow canals ducking under the footbridges. It turned out to be relatively easy and quite relaxing. We went all around the city of Giethoorn with the sun raining down on us and a light breeze fluttering my hair.
There were little thatched houses on both sides of the canals. There were little private inlets that led to their private boat garages and docks. Little foot bridges rose above our heads and flowers bloomed in every house’s gardens. Vines and tendrils floated down from the bridges and ducks floated close enough to reach out and touch. I felt like I was in a fairy tale. I think that hour of boating was the closest I have felt to being in heaven. It was absolutely spectacular.
After parking our boat we walked around a bit and ended up at a little Italian restaurant for gelato. I ordered Coppa Limon which the waiter claimed to be “his father’s extra strong recipe”. It wasn’t too strong. It was absolutely delicious. It was smooth with a heady lime flavor that had a lime liquor syrup spread over the top. SO GOOD. After eating we people watched for a while and laughed at everyone struggling to float their boats through the canals. There were the tour boats conducted by professionals. There were boats full of young people waving their punting poles around and screaming. There were tourists from every nation and most seemed to have little to no experience controlling a motored boat. There were boat collisions every couple minutes and I had to wonder if that’s why the boats were encased in steel.
I didn’t want to leave. We walked around for a little longer after gelato although the waiter tried to convince me to stay for a cocktail which I politely refused. There were a couple cute shops and Krista and I bought matching gorgeous blue stoned rings as a souvenirs. However, we finally agreed it was time to head back to our car and head back. I fell asleep on the ride home.