August 18, 2016

The 3-Month Mark

Today, 18th August 2016 is officially 3 months to the date  since we left Thailand. Somehow it felt like a lifetime ago, yet if we were to base it on “3 months”, it really wasn’t that long ago. 

Or is it?

I guess time is relative but 3 months seems to be a nice milestone. Especially since it also marked the day when I had to venture out all the way to a little suburb slightly off Amsterdam all on my own, on public transport with only Google Map as my companion for an appointment.

It wasn’t all stress-free. I got royally lost trying to find that one damn bus-stop amongst other 10 bus-stops when I got off the train station. I must have approached more than 3 people to ask for directions and each one pointed me to different corners. I ended up circling around the same area for 20 minutes and came to a realisation that Google Map is crap and inaccurate. 

Then, just ONE station away before I was to alight from the bus, all traffic was halted because the road had to be lifted for the boat underneath to pass through the dam. I was annoyed I was going to be late, but managed to get to the place by the skin of my teeth. I was just in time. 

The journey back home was just as bad. I took 1.5 hours longer going in a loop of a different direction.

After 2 nights of 3.30 a.m bedtime and having to leave home today before 10 a.m to the hassle of multi-transport travel while trying to navigate the Dutch transport system on my own for a 12 p.m appointment, I was glad that at least I had a pleasant meeting. 

It also happens to be a full moon today. And what a beautiful moon it is!

View from the backyard
It always look crappy when zoomed with a camera!


That and the last one week has been filled with bits of excitement.  

We’ve had the sporadic sighting of perseids as we waited the nights out underneath the clear sky. We saw several over 3 nights. We woke the kids up after midnight to awe them with showers. They only saw 1 and several satellites.

We found and saw Saturn through our newly acquired beginner’s telescope. It was a tiny little speck but you can make out the rings. Yes, we have a cool telescope!

To be fair, the telescope belongs to Spud as it was technically  her birthday gift. She had specifically asked for it to which we, the parents, happily obliged because it makes us really, really, really happy. It gave us a valid excuse to buy one. Although, Spud’s been warned that it is not a toy and she could only use it under our supervision. 

We had gone for our 1st weekend away since moving here to Drenthe, a 2-hour drive from our little Holland for a short vacation with Silver Bullet’s family.

Of course, we looked at the moon up close with the telescope too while we were there. That goes without saying and even at half moon then, it was an ah.may.zing. sight!

We visited Westerbork Concentration Camp or Kamp Westerbork while we were there. It’s a war memorial from World War II where it functioned as a transit camp to assemble Romani and Dutch Jews before they were transported to other Nazi concentration camp. (more on this another time)

And one of the better excitements is the little nudges. Perhaps, the universe took a pity on me after my rants and thoughts on The World I Know. It’s been great to meet up with people outside of my neighbourhood. It’s even a better blessing to be able to meet those in my industry.

3 months and I can’t say that nothing has been going on. On the contrary, be it good or not so good, much has been going on. Too much.

Some things made me reminisce Thailand; I’d be lying if I say I don’t miss some of the conveniences and luxuries there. Most days I am so glad that we are out of Thailand. I think I’ll need to have another post (or posts) on that.

Ah! Life. There are, after all, blessings to be counted and challenges to be embraced.

To that, I’m being reminded of Eric’s Make it A Great Day post in which he ended with:  Challenges create champions. Be a champion. Or not. The choice is yours. 

It fits with my 3rd month’s mark sentiments reminding me that the road will always be bumpy and whatever life takes you, we are capable of making a choice to conjure up that champion and make it a great day. 

The moon is full tonight. It’s also known as the Sturgeon Moon. In astrology, it is a moon that would bring about change with the beginning of eclipse season. A time in which some areas in our lives would be going through a change of endings and/or new beginnings. 

Sounds about right.

Or it could also just be complete bollocks. Or not. The choice is yours. 

Wait. Let me have a look at that moon again with our Spud telescope. You know, just to make sure that it’s the Sturgeon Moon.

We Spud: Proud Owner of the beginner’s telescope




Posted by:    |    12 Comment
  1. Love the telescope! We have one too, but it doesn’t get much use, unfortunately. Seein gthe rings of Saturn is awesome. As is seeing the moons of Jupiter. Thanks for the shout out. You are definitely a champion for making that life changing move to the Netherlands. A quarter of year there!

    • Most welcome, Eric. It was a good read.
      We haven’t got to seeing the moons of Jupiter yet! That’d be super awesome to be able to see that.
      To many more quarters of the year! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. I was astounded too when I first saw Saturn through a telescope. I don’t know what I was expecting – but I was surprised by the lack of stars around it. Realising that life on Earth had distorted my perspective on space. I found it an almost spiritual experience – a reminder of how small and insignificant we really are in the grand scheme of the universe.
    Interestingly, you’ve given me the second of two messages in the past two days about change and transition. Perhaps I should reflect on them?
    You made me smile at your public transport experience. I ended up in completely the wrong town when I tried the trains in Holland. Challenges help us grow, and heck they make for a good story in the future! Hope your next 3 months in your new home are good to you.

    • Saturn’s a tiny, tiny speck that we saw…surrounded by darkness. Still, it was such an amazing sight and you are right, Safar – there is certainly something spiritual about seeing the other universe from the naked eye. Perhaps the universe is conveying some sort of message to you…what do you think it is? Would be interesting to hear what you are reflecting upon.
      I wanted to pull my hair with the public transport experience!!! Grrrrr…but I think I can get away with being the dumb tourist. Hehehe! Things like that always make for a good story in the end! I hope the next 3 months would be good too. SO good to have you here Safar. Wishing you a wonderful week. x.

  3. So interesting. As I was reading, I thought to myself it’s probably Google maps being screwed up. I am not a fan of Google maps. And then kept reading and laughed. Now I have to go back and read your previous articles. I’m way behind and I want to read more about your Holland experiences.

    • You thought right, Barb. When I got to the actual location where I was supposed to be in the first place, Google map was still showing a different place. That was when I realise Google had screwed up. It’s one of those days…most of the time though, Google map has been my saviour. I’m glad to be able to make you laugh..heheh! I was tearing my hair out during the whole time after being sent to different corners. Imagine 4 different corners all in the opposite directions! Then I had to call my husband to help out and every single word that came out of my mouth was filled with f**K. What a pain in the butt.
      Enjoy reading our crazy Holland experiences and so far nothing too far out. (yet!) :p

  4. What is it about Saturn that draws people to it? My daughter was obsessed with it when she was little and also wanted a telescope, but never got one. I’m a bad mom, lol.
    Hey, you’re never lost if you’re found :D. At least you didn’t get off the train and watch the doors close with your kid still behind while train is taking off to another city. Have I mentioned I’m a bad mom? LOL
    I bet in three months you’ll be posting about new friends, job, and trips to new places like it’s a piece of cake. Which it will be!
    How do you like grocery shopping? I remember staring at boxed/packaged items not knowing what it was and not being able to read instructions on how to prepare it. Nightmare, I tell you!

    • It must be the rings. It has to be. Plus, it has some pretty colours! ๐Ÿ˜‰ I can imagine that a long time ago when your daughter wanted one, telescopes are probably way too expensive. I don’t think it makes you a bad mom. She could have also send her off to the (nearest) observatory. ;p

      You got me (with eyes wide open) on “watching the door close with your kid still behind”. Oh nooo…what did you do right after you realised? Do you have a secret code ? How did you get reunited? I swear that would be my worse nightmare especially when they are still young.

      I hope in 3 months I can add more colour like you said and thank you for your positive vibes, Jas!

      You know, I hate shopping in general, but when it comes to grocery shopping and looking for household items, I actually don’t mind it too much. And because I can understand bits and pieces of the instructions in Dutch the experience hasn;t been all that bad.But I can imagine how difficult it would be if say I’d have to do grocery shopping in Russia! LOL

      • Oh, yes, I recon it was very expensive ๐Ÿ™‚
        Here’s the short story describing that terrifying day when I watch the train taking off with Andrea…with a happy and funny ending. ๐Ÿ˜€

        • I’m with you to never loosen your grip! And that makes me a paranoid mother… :p Andrea’s a brave girl really for doing what she did all on her own while waiting for you. You taught her well! ๐Ÿ˜€

  5. Wow, is it 3 months already! time flies indeed.
    Bravo, Gefeliciteered! You’re doing just fine.
    I’m totally ignorant about Saturn and Perseids so I am very glad my eyes was fixed on your page. I really enjoyed reading this post Ann. Spud has a thing on this and I think its cool. That telescope is COOL.
    It’s such a great metaphor to use the moon & bits of Astrology to relate to what’is going on in your life. I’m telling you, I totally feel you & can relate.
    I can almost feel you about the bus rides and asking for directions on those trip. Here I need to get track of the time, or else I’ll wait up for the next trip Lol ! Its one of the things we Expats are bound for : Changes..changes..and changes.

    I’m sure you’ll get a hang of everything. Netherlands is a beautiful country, but nowhere is a perfect place.
    Sometimes I stand in the street here in Germany and wishing that I could understand all that is written and what they are saying. Of how many times I said to myself “Why am I the only Filipino girl here’!!!

    • Indeed. 3 months! Eeeks.
      Thank you for your kind words, Christina;so glad you enjoyed reading the post. ๐Ÿ™‚ I think the telescope is cool too. It’s great to look through it when we have clear sky. As with Astrology, it’s cool too. I’ve always been fascinated by it but in this case, I can always blame it on the moon.:p
      I’m thinking with public transport, I’m going to use “I’ma tourist card”. It makes it more forgivable. :p true with the timing too. They are usually so precise, and when you miss it, good luck waiting for another one!
      Nothing is perfect…but I’m thankful for all the imperfections. German is also a tough language and I find it much harsher than Dutch. Hey! Maybe there’s an app with “find the neaerest filipina around” LOL…
      Thank you for leaving such a long comment.* muaaacks*


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