Monday, April 26, 2010

Well-deserved landing beer on the beach

This one I really deserved. First the wind was too weak and I had to
work hard in the sand to try to get airborne. In the end I got up,
when the wind was somewhat stronger.
Then it suddenly picked up, way stronger than forecasted, and I had to
fight hard to get back to the right end of the beach. Now I have sand
in my hair, in my ears, in my eyes and in the glider. But it was fun!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Boating in the sun

Yesterday we got our new bikes! Classical Dutch style but with seven
gears. Today we arranged for an indoor parking space for mine on our
street, Femke already had one.
Now we are out in the lovely weather with my boat :-)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Towing at Aarlanderveen

I was supposed to fly to Thessaloniki today for a week of work. enter Icelandic ash clouds. Exit Marko's flight.
Instead I joined Dutch friends Chantal and Pepijn for a sunny day at Aarlanderveen, paragliding.
Here, they tow-launch from the flat Dutch fields. If you are not careful you and/or your wing ends up in one of the many sloots (small drainage canals) that litter the landscape, as happened at least 8 times today.

Luckily I was not one of them. I did however fly next to a stork for a while :-)

There are more photos here:

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Soaring in the sunshine

Today I had my first day of soaring the dunes at Wijk aan Zee this year. And what a beautiful day! The winds were in the the weak end but still flyable. And the sun was sparkling from a clear blue sky :-)

Tomorrow I am supposed to fly to Thessaloniki for a week of work. But with the volcano ash-clouds from Iceland closing down all air traffic, I don't think it will work out. We will just have to wait and see.

I apologize for the low quality of the photos, I took them with my mobile.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Today Femke and me took our first little ride in the boat for this year. Nice!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Friday, April 09, 2010

The very last day in Beirut

Our very last day in Beirut started with a visit to the small but splendid National Museum. It was shot to pieces during the long and bloody civil war but reopened in the end of the 90's. They show a touching film about how the artifacts were protected in individual concrete covers, casted on spot over them, and how they re-emerged after the war, mostly unscratched. If you are in town, do visit.

Then we had a last go at Beirut's nightlife, starting with a drink at Dragonfly (they make a beautifully spicy Bloody Mary) and then food and friends at Joe Pena's. Some old colleagues from ANERA were in town and one of them even had a birthday - all due causes for celebration!

Thus we continued to flashy Bar 360° on top of Le Gray Hotel. The view was stunning, the DJ good, the furniture cool and the drink prices shocking. We had a good time. Some of the more hardy of us finished it off at very happening Bar Centrale, which very much reminded me of a submarine with a bar.

Then me and Femke hurried into a taxi, grabbed our bags at the hotel and scuttled off to the airport for our night flights back to Amsterdam.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Beirut again

A three hour taxi ride took us from Damscus to Beirut and thew comfortable Tulip Hotel deVille. We also stopped by Olivier's place to pick up some of our stuff and share a bottle of Emir from Clos St Thomas. Very nice.

Olivier and Nadine took us to dinner at a good Armenian restaurant on Rue Pasteur, where Judith and her local architect/journalist friend met up. Tasty food and nice company!

Last day in Damascus