There are times I like to get lost. Not intentionally, but I get a bit antsy and can’t be where I am. I tend to start off in any direction and wait to see what happens. Wandering aimlessly can be one of the most enjoyable things for me because there is an element of excitement from the unknown. Life becomes a bit mundane and expected at times, and there is something to be said about not know where you are going and what you will stumble upon. I especially need to do this when I’m on vacation. I can’t stand being in a hotel room just waiting for something to happen. I need to experience everything I can while I’m there because I never know when I will be back.
The Netherlands were a perfect example of that. I know what most people think of when they think Netherlands; Amsterdam. I’ve been to Amsterdam and had my fun and a lot of fun it was. But then there is the rest of this country out there that most mid-20s Americans seem to neglect to mention. There is a beautiful country with green everywhere and so much to offer. When we went on a tour in Europe, we stayed in a little town. There wasn’t much but a resort to see at first glance. A beautiful, secluded little spot hidden from the rest of the world with a forest around it perfect for a morning run and all the amenities that come with that. Amenities I had seen and experienced, but the rest of the Netherlands, I hadn’t. It was time for that.
While I could have stayed with my tour group and eaten at a mediocre buffet of food not of the land we were in, I always want more. It was time to grab my camera and start walking. So I strapped on my walking boots and found the main road. I started walking and came across this adorable little village. It seemed something out of an old-western at first with empty streets and everyone behind closed doors as everyone looks on waiting for the final duel. But there was something intriguing and inviting about the place. Children lived here with their chalk drawings in the street. Families had been here for generations and had seen the changes in the world around them, but maintained their own sense of self. I wandered this little town seeing artwork in the streets and amazing little shops closed early to get some rest on this lovely Sunday evening.
And there was this house. A house that belonged right where it was with all the signs of the Netherlands on it. The little clogs nailed to the side of the door, the brick paved driveway, and the beautiful gardening that matched the trees everywhere. A house for a family of four with two well-behaved little blonde children that were allowed to make drawing in the middle of the street of this town where bicycles out-numbered cars 5 to 1. I found a meal in a great restaurant and ate by myself happier than I could have ever been in any buffet of sterno heated gruel, imagining a 50s sitcom, Clever family-like existence of this happy family in there quaint brick house with its narrow doorway and two-story design.