Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sunday in Haarlem

Another weekend in Haarlem, as this was not the weekend going back home nor traveling to some other cities.
I had a car yesterday but did not use it - cold and cloudy day and I did not feel I drive to somewhere, so no car today. It was rainy when I woke up but by the time I was ready to go out, it started clearing out. There are a few museums in Haarlem and this is supposed to be the oldest museum in Europe. I did not go inside, as their exhibits are not my taste - older European (as I like after the impression period). On the way there, I stopped by the other one where I found perfect coffee cups at their gift shop. It was much cheaper price than this as he is from the Netherlands, I guess.
On the way to find a restaurant for lunch, there was a cool door hunger, instead of typical leaf stuff. I thought RED door is the best but black door like this with ORANGE ornament was really cool too.
My lunch was at a restaurant close to the center of the city. I was cold by walking around the city so I ordered hot chocolate to start. I usually don't drink sweet beverages but I was so tempted to try this time.
I asked English menu but as usual they did not have it. So I asked the person to describe all sandwiches. Spanish smoked ham, Netherlands cheeses, BLT, and something beef. So I ordered the beef one and this is what I got. I heard from my coworker about raw beef sandwich. Yes, I eat raw beef but never had in the sandwich. Interesting taste (not too bad). I could be better if it is not sandwich but meat plate with bread as side.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Snack for the Day

At a pop up stand I had this deep fried Apple pocket. Nice for the season.

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A dinner at room

You might think that I am eating good foods all the time, but during the trip I usually eat at room like this. Not luxurious but minimal.

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Saturday, November 19, 2011

Early Thanksgiving Dinner

We had a little early thanksgiving dinner this year as I will be in Amsterdam next week. Chicken instead of turkey, but we had green beans and my famous cauliflower side. Yum yum.

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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Weekend in Paris

It was like a dream...
I am talking about the trip to Paris.
I think I am fortunate to live in one of the best cities in the world, NYC, but Paris is at something different level.
I could not get enough of the tower. Wherever you are in Paris, you can see the tower from where you are. I was not crazy enough to go to the top, but I bet the view from the top is great.
I did not go inside of the museum (as it was so nice weather and I did not have that  much time), but the architecture itself is worth to go there. Look at the building. This itself is art. You can't see this level of architecture anywhere else, but Paris or maybe in Italy (Rome).
Another site I could not miss is this gate, of course. It is located at the end of the famous street. Not so many people were this side of the gate, while the other side was packed with tourists. It was so nice to be out.
I did not go crazy on the food but I wanted to try this bistro. This was only 11 euro and it was a huge piece. Good with toast and of course wine... Their breads were really nice too.
I heard something about the number of yogurt they have. Look how many variety they carry. It was a small grocery store, and this many variety. I wished I had more time in Paris to snack something.
Next to the grocery store, there was a butcher shop and there were something you won't see in US or Japan - feathered ducks. I am not sure why they still need to have feather... The guy at the store was smiling when I was taking this picture. I guess he knew it was unique in Paris (or France).
Of course, I could not pass the sweets. You can't get true European sweets in the Netherlands. It was over the top. So rich and creamy... I did not try everything, but I had a few pieces over 3 days stay in Paris.
To conclude the trip, this was the nice shot in my opinion. Perfect French baguette at the airport. I noticed that French baguette has very similar texture to bagel - crunchy outside and chewy inside.
I am surely coming back to Paris sometime very soon. I can feel it.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Friday, November 11, 2011

Paris for the Weekend

This is the view from the room. Not too bad.

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Sunday, November 6, 2011

Interesting Event

I figured out that every first Sundays they open the stores. So I changed my mind not to go to Amsterdam but  just hang out in Haarlem. (it is pretty dead in Haarlem on other Sundays) There was an interesting event at the church. Two models with wedding dress. They were pretty though.

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Saturday, November 5, 2011

Nice Saturday

It has been mild (mid 50s) here in Amsterdam/Haarlem. Since I got a car for a day (again sharing a car among the team), so I decided to make a day trip. Before that, I ran in Haarlem, where boat houses are all over, which I did not notice. They do have address listed in front of the house, which I thought interesting.
I drove a car a bit over one hour and this is where I ended up with - a beautiful forest. It seems a very famous hiking and cycling area and there were so many cars both side of the road. Fortunately the spot I chose was very quiet and I did not see that many people.
During the hike, I found this restaurant with well maintained garden. No guest so I was able to take a picture without eating there.
I drove another 20-30 minutes to get to Arnhem, where famous battle happened between German and British during the WWII. I was on the river where tour boats were waiting for next round. It had more German feeling than Dutch as it is pretty close the boarder with German.
On the way back to Haarlem, as I was so hungry, I stopped by at a Japanese restaurant my friend told me about the other day. "Okonomi-Yaki" is their specialty so why not, right? A combination of sauce and mayonnaise was something only Japanese crave for.