So the travel blog that began life in Bolivia – and which is named in celebration of the three types of camelids (Alpaca, Llama and Vicuña) which live on the Bolivian altiplano – is heading for a new home…in The Netherlands. That’s correct, from one of the highest countries in the world to one which is frequently below sea level.
After travelling from Bolivia to Nicaragua (and back again), a few months squatting back in London, with the occasional trip down memory lane, the time has come to move on again…
I’ll be living and working in the beautiful city of Den Haag – The Hague as its known internationally – home to the Dutch Government and Royal Family, as well as the UN’s International Court of Justice. It’s also the head office of the International Water Association, a global network of dedicated water and sanitation professionals delivering innovative solutions to the world’s water and waste problems…where I’ll be working.
After a few hectic weeks packing our lives into boxes, saying goodbye (again) to family and friends, sorting our flat in London and tying up loose ends, I’ve been in The Hague for a couple of days. First impressions have been positive. The sun has been shining and the warm Spring weather has seen outdoor cafes filled with Northern Europeans desperate to soak up some vitamin D. I’m not sure I’ll ever get used to looking the ‘wrong’ way for traffic every time I cross the road…or at least that I’ll live long enough to do so.
So, as I explore my new home, no cliché will be left unturned. Expect thorough investigations of the art of flying a windmill; the meaning of the painted wooden clog, and exactly what the mouse on the stair was doing wearing them; not to mention exploring endless fields of tulips. There may also be the occasional polemic about why water equity is at the heart of sustainable development.
Cycling should be a lot more pleasant, not to mention safer, than on London’s crowded streets. Plus, I will be able to legitimately support a national football team that actually knows how to play football…bring on the totaalvoetbal!
I hope these photos give a flavour of The Hague…all the signs are that it should be a interesting place to live.
* the phrase ‘camel in clogs’ is the intellectual property of Ms. A. Pollard, a wordsmith of rare ability.