Dipesh Majumdar

Blog and Paintings

Netherlands - Day5

It is windy and cold in Netherlands now. Temperature is zero degree C, and you can't get out without wrapping top to bottom with thick insulated pullovers, gloves and caps. Oh what a pain it is! Netherlands was even colder a few weeks before when the waters that we see now forming nice patterns in tune with the incessant wind were all ice - ice on which people used to skate and slide. Well I saw a water body today just in front of Blue Radisson hotel in Boeing Avenue and it was half-ice-half-water and it looked like a large slab of broken glass.

As I was basking in the sun waiting for another colleague to show me the way to my workplace, I couldn't help but feel pity for the blazing sun which failed to ignite the slightest warmth which the land was so desperately yearning for - or was it only me - because the rest of the place here seemed quite nicely accustomed to the chilly weather. And the trees which are bereft of any green leaves stand still without a flinch, unperturbed by the incessant onslaught of piercing chilled wind and sometimes snow - what patience and strength!

What an amazing planet we live in? While in one part the hot sun almost burns away each living being with anger and fury and while during the same time, i.e. march end, in another corner, the cold wind and snow does just the opposite - almost freezes life into corpses. There is a continuous struggle for survival - be it humans, trees, animals or ants and micro organisms. One thing is certain - whatever it is - life must go on. There is no other option. Also it seems always that the grass is greener on the other side – while if you truly be on both sides at the same time – you come to know the reality and can’t really see much to choose from the options.

Well, coming to a new place that is totally different from the climate of the place that one belongs to definitely have its own obvious problems. But not less are the other problems - the language problem, the problem to assimilate each and every procedure of day to day activities - for example booking a bus/train ticket, knowing which bus goes which places etc, and of course going through the pain of asking for help from people who are not expecting to be intervened. The initial embarrassment is definitely going to fade away with time. Can't help but give a little more time to get things settled, weather the storm and clear the sight. Things have no other option but to improve. Or at least a positive mind set helps, believe me.

Some foolish mistakes I committed - committed and then regretted - cursed myself - but what use - life goes on and I don't have any clue how to plug these mistakes. I am sure I am going to commit more silly mistakes in future - a pattern in my gene that somehow seems to be stuck permanently and can't be gotten rid of.

This place is nice - acres of land lying empty and unused - and sometimes large stretch of green grass interspersed with large, tall and shriveled trees. Soil seems fertile - there is no dust anywhere - the dresses and shoes don't get soiled so easily - and that's a real realief! My dust allergy will definitely get a breather! There are occasional small water bodies - pure and pristine and that makes beautiful rhythmic patterns in the cold wind. The grass is green on all sides and the fluttering white birds in search of fish/other food in the clean water makes it all the more picturesque.

I stay in Ibis Amsterdam Airport Hotel for the time being and very soon I will move out to a rented house. Rent in Amstelveen, Hoofdorp, Aalsmeer etc has increased of late... and getting a 1 or 2 BHK Apartment in less than 1400 euro is a real difficult task.

Ibis Airport Hotel is hardly 7-10 km from Schiphol Airport (Amsterdam Airport). There are frequent free shuttle buses from the airport to Ibis hotel, Ibis budget hotel and Novotel - these three hotels. Anyone planning for a stay in Netherlands for a few days can plan it out this way and it is easy –

Book your flight tickets to Amsterdam airport. Also book a room in one of these three hotels. And then fly your way into Amsterdam airport. Immediately after coming out of the airport main gate, if you look to your right, you will see these buses carrying people to the 3 hotels - their frequency is one after every 20 minutes or so (approximately). Board a bus and reach one of the hotels.

Later you can plan slowly on how to walk around important places here in Amsterdam - I will include them in my blog - later, as I see these places one by one. On my visit-list are the museums, Anne Frank's house, the canals and a few other places which I am not yet aware of. Well till that time I bid you good bye. More of these experiences in Netherlands in the upcoming blogs… do take care and live well!

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