The Netherlands: King’s Day

As my visit to the provinces of North and South Holland comes to an end, I embark on a three hour train ride to the northeast city of Groningen. It is here that I will be meeting up with some good friends of mine who I first met during my graduate school days. Having visited… Continue reading The Netherlands: King’s Day

Holland: Cheese and Tulips

One of the things I look forward to the most on this trip to Holland is to visit the city of Alkmaar and its world famous cheese market. Every Friday from April to September, an open air cheese market magically appears in the city’s main square. Thousands of round yellow cased cheeses are displayed, tested,… Continue reading Holland: Cheese and Tulips

Holland: Dutch Hospitality

Having visited friends in the Netherlands two years ago, I found the locals there to be warm, polite, and quite helpful. I was a bit surprised by this treatment since I had heard that the Dutch were not known for being particularly friendly towards visitors. It was later explained to me that the northeast of… Continue reading Holland: Dutch Hospitality

Holland: America’s Dutch Roots

Walking around the streets of Rotterdam, I recall a television program I recently viewed where someone referenced to America’s Dutch roots. The person argued that it was the Dutch, not the English, who initially colonized and shaped America. This statement is starting to make sense to me on many different levels. The architecture of Rotterdam… Continue reading Holland: America’s Dutch Roots

Holland: Bridges, Rivers, and Ports

Upon arriving at Schiphol Airport, I board a southern bound train heading to the city of Rotterdam. I arrive at Rotterdam’s Central Station an hour later and proceed to the subway platforms downstairs. As I reach my stop and start walking towards the hotel, it is impossible for me to hide my eyes from the… Continue reading Holland: Bridges, Rivers, and Ports

Stockholm: Unexpected Sights

Upon embarking on any trip, I will inevitably have an experience that helps shed light on the culture of the country I am visiting. These encounters usually occur quite unexpectedly and are rarely the kind mentioned in guide books. Stockholm, unsurprisingly, is no exception to this rule. As I walk south from my centrally located… Continue reading Stockholm: Unexpected Sights

Stockholm: English, Fast Food, and Hollywood

One of the things you notice fairly quickly when travelling in Scandinavia is that everyone is able to speak English. And when I say everyone, I mean you will not come across a single person who does not speak it. Not only that, people here talk with very little accent and are often easier to… Continue reading Stockholm: English, Fast Food, and Hollywood