Oh my God, I'm so behind on this thing. I haven't written about Holland, France, Italy, Norway and Denmark (where I currently am). That's a month's worth of travel. Let's see how far we get today.
So, I arrived in Holland to visit my friend Koen. His family had attended a funeral the afternoon I arrived, so I felt a bit awful blowing in on that, but after a sad start, I had a super-awesome week-and-a-bit. As Mum pointed out, visiting Koen was a bit like going home: I started my trip there last year, so I knew what I was going back to, and even got the same room again! We visited several different Dutch cities: Rotterdam, which has bounced back splendidly after being razed in the second world war; Eindhoven, which was ruined by shitty weather; Arnhem, which Koen described as totally ghetto but I was quite fond of; and 's-Hertogenbosch, which was slightly marred by rain but was still lovely. In Eindhoven, we went to see CocoRosie. We saw them last time I was in Holland, and they were, of course, awesome. It was also nice, if a bit odd, to attend an indie show in a seated venue. We also went to Arnhem one night to see Lady Gaga. Umm, amazing. She had a really dirty fucking mouth though. I was next to a woman who had brought her two young daughters - I hope they didn't understand English. We stayed that night at Koen's brother's place. It was the cutest house ever. Their toilet had photos of their friends and family pulling ugly faces all over the wall. Yeahhh.
In s-Hertogenbosch, we went on a canal cruise, which we'd wanted to do last year but it was all booked out, what with it being the tourist high season and all. The guide spoke only in Dutch, but apparently I wasn't missing much. A lot of the canals passed under the houses, it got very dark and tight, and apparently they get full of bats. Creepy. We had an amazing lunch too. Actually, everything I ate in Holland was amazing. Lots of bread, cheese, cured meat, fresh fruit, coffee and chocolate. We went back to Efteling one day, an ultra amazing theme park in Holland. It wasn't very busy, as it was a Tuesday, so we went on our favourite rides again and again. Apart from that, we had a lot of quiet days, which was really nice. It was good to chill out and spend time with Koen, one of my favourite people on the planet.
I left Koen to meet my brother Rhys and his friend Gerard in Amsterdam.
And now I'm off to meet a friend in Copenhagen, so the rest of the story will have to wait.