With time your opinion has shifted when it comes to the country you call home. Your stay has the quality of something transient. A nondescript business hotel in Wilhelmshaven. It’s safe, the sheets are clean, people are polite, it’s what you call your residence for the duration of a project implementation. You strike up a few acquaintances, meeting them for drinks and the occasional dinner, but you are careful not to make friends. So you remain a foreigner, never really quite feeling at ease with the indigenous population. You pondered on this the other day whilst running through the forest. There is hardly any woods left – besides, this nation of farmers and seafarers would invariably use it for two purposes, heating up their homesteads and building ships. But Limburg must have been on a safe distance from the harbors and their fleets and far too bourgeoise to outright cull the flora when it could provide for a multitude of pastimes.

You run over wooden bridges and up leave-covered hills. Nature is still lush but autumn is slowly making its return. You miss her. The stillness, the rain, waking up to classical music, uncorking a vintage saint √©milion. Going to sleep with a documentary on Charlemagne. Yes Maastricht brings back all of that…and for once you feel like you have returned home.

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run, run…

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across fields and meadows

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breakfast as it should be consumed

You are in hibernation mode. An early autumn, yet temperatures are soaring. The cause? There are few suspects, but perhaps not the usual one. Yet, it is what it is…tomorrow is another day. Does it bother you? Well apart from intense headache, not that much. You turn to your classical playlist. You watch Penny Dreadful at night. After all you are a nocturnal creature, a dark soul feeling more at ease with historical torture devices than with high fashion.

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You walk briskly home, taking a detour through the park in the hope of avoiding human contact. It works like a charm. Not a soul apart from a a few kids in the park sharing a joint. Needless to say, they don’t notice you.

When you get home you kick off your red shoes and head straight to the kitchen. Despite taking a vow not to drink (and therefore the cabinets are staring palpably empty back at you), you pour a chilled limoncello as soon as you arrive. It seems to hit your mind before the blood stream. Mind over matter no doubt. Just as you see the year ahead. Day by day, week by week…


In Peace …oh do please let me go

“I already know what’s wrong with you. You’re unhappy. You’re isolated. You think you’re the cause of this unhappiness and are unworthy of affection so you’ve few friends. Recently you lost something you think very important. Your lover, your faith, your family, or all three. You blame yourself for this, so it makes you neurotic, and you don’t sleep and don’t eat, anything healthy anyway. You used to take care of your appearance, but you’ve lost interest in that, so you avoid mirrors. Sunlight bothers you, so you avoid that too, about which you’re guilty because you think it’s unhealthy and even immoral not to like the sun. You’re not a woman of convention or you wouldn’t be here, but you like to pretend you are so people don’t notice you. But you sometimes like that as well and can dress to draw the eye. But then you think the men who look at you are fools, or worse, to be taken in by such an obvious outward show. So instead, you’re drawn to dark, complicated, impossible men, assuring your own unhappiness and isolation because, after all, you’re happiest alone. But not even then, because you can’t stop thinking about what you’ve lost, again for which you blame yourself. So the cycle goes on, the snake eating its own tail.”

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A week ago I was still in Malta, savouring hot summer nights. It’s a stark contrast to the rain and gale winds that have descended over the Low Countries like a cold, wet blanket. It doesn’t help that Facebook reminds me that a year ago, or two, or even three….I was in Malta relishing every moment!

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feels like yesterday

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those summer night…

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fish spa at 10 pm

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discovering quiet streets in Mdina….I miss my Malta

 

….is something a woman cannot get enough of. So much that she declines dinner out as DHL is still on the way (it’s 6.15 pm when she takes this management decision). She is not a big spender but oh does she adore Roland Mouret. Timeless, classical, and according to herself an investment with an instantaneous ROI. Words are simply superfluous…

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happiness in a bag

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Roland Mouret Arreton midnight blue skirt and Armani Collezioni sheer blouse

I find myself starving for food as I walk back to the train station. Forget cooking dinner tonight. I grab a Turkish pizza and read an article on the mass desertion of republicans, distancing themselves from the Trump camp. I can’t help but feeling an ounce of joy. The man is not only unfit to be president, he is dangerous. Half way through I realise I am about to miss my train and I jam the last part of the wrap into my mouth and run to the train. The train whistle goes off just as I sink into my seat. The sprint gives me a stitch in the side, which I grab hard to contain. After a few game sessions on my phone I turn on a lounge compilation and revert to my emails. Just as one does when business is ever present…

We landed safe and sound after a not too dramatic morning. Having said that, flying Air Malta didn’t exclude an early departure alas. With the alarm set on 5.40 am, we left the hotel half an hour later, Sebastian taking it surprisingly in his stride. It left us with just about enough time to do some last minute airport shopping before embarking on the journey home. It’s a bit of a temperature chock coming from 30+ degrees to 18, and as I was catching up on work on the sofa the fireplace had to be turned on. Life settling to relative normality in other words….perhaps a bit too quickly.

But it’s good to be back throwing myself into the abyss of work. I just left, looking forward to a relatively quiet evening. Netflix’ the Fall awaits in bed.

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yes darling, I have an assignment for you

The last day in Malta. In less than 12 hours we will be on a plane, destination Amsterdam. I must say it’s with mixed feelings I am leaving this island. Work beckons and somehow I am rather looking forward to that, but going from 30+ degrees to 18 is something I would prefer to miss out on. Nevertheless these two weeks have been tremendously good for the family….as the pictures will tell :).

Addiju Malta!

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dinner at the Villa this evening

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Sailing with the family

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…and I started reading again….thanks P ….still not finished

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last pool shot

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girls night out

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take two

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found this unexpected picture after leaving my phone unattended for the briefest of moments

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dinner the other night

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one of many walks along the boulevard

No Malta trip is quite a trip writing home about if you don’t take yourself to strait between Malta and Gozo where the islet of Comino can be found. Colloquially it goes by the name of the Blue Lagoon due to it’s endless azur blue waters. So we decided to rent a sailing boat for a day and chill with the family. An instant hit with everyone!

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into the endless blue

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content

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…and happy, let the fun begin

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although the trip begun with some sea sickness…luckily it disappeared quickly

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scenery

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the adventure started…

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…and ended with a speed boat ride

No Maltese holiday is a proper one without the experience of a festa. Luckily it played out just outside the hotel and where we were having dinner for the evening – the Villa. I feasted on oysters and duck. An obligatory visit to the local parish church was also on the cards before the fireworks started. Fantastic end to the first part of the holiday. Luckily we have one more week to go :).

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festivities are about to start

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oysters for starter

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visit to the local parish church

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where we met Father Nicolas

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at the beach waiting for the fireworks

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took some time so we decided to build a sandcastle in the meantime

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…before the fireworks commenced