Carol Bontekoe

This blog has been keeping track of my adventures since 2004. The stories and the adventures have come from my college dorm room to Uganda, Peace Corps Kyrgyzstan, learning Dutch in the Netherlands to living in the wilds of Homer, Alaska. I went back to school in Amsterdam to study Theaterwetenschap (Theatre Science) at University of Amsterdam. And now my adventures as a Fruit Fly, a Sexy Unicorn, and creating a movement with Team Sparkle in Chicago.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

for the first time....

I feel like I'm seeing the netherlands for the first time. I have to say it is a really beautiful country. It isn't the majestic beauty of Canada or the American west. It isn't a classic and perfected beauty of Paris or Northern Italy. It especially isn't a wild beauty like Scotland or Kyrgyzstan. No, I'm finding here to have what I would say is a quiet beauty. Almost....hmmmm.... if landscape can have this.... let's say an inner beauty. I have been living here for over 8 months and though I have kind of noticed it in the past I never truely was in awe of the beauty here. That is the problem with inner beauty... It doesn't hit you in the face right away.
When I first got here I was kind of in a daze from the summer I had just ended. I worked at...hmmm.... for lack of a better word... uniquely insane camp.
Actually it could have been a good summer if I didn't have the boss I had. He would tell me to do something, I would do it, and then he would get mad or sarcastic at me for doing it. And unlike after Peace Corps I didn't get to have a week or two to recoup before joing the real world. Nope. I moved to The Netherlands the day after camp ended. For the first month or so here I was still in post camp shock.
Then as that wore off I began to realize... I'M IN THE NETHERLANDS!!! WHAT?! How did I get here? It has been difficult to develop a social life here. The Fries aren't the most welcoming people to outsiders.

However, in the past two months I have started to develop a social life. I'm on three different sports teams and I go out once or twice a week. The weather was crap for months.
It wasn't even snowing, it just was kinda cold, windy, and there was no sun. Now all of a sudden the sun has come out and with it there is a whole new light being shined on the netherlands. Now as I look out on the green pastors filled with sheep and cattle; the canals that seem to stretch on forever; the sea filled with sail boats; the flowers next to the roads; I suddenly get it. I get that The Netherlands is a truely beautiful place.