Wardehofplein 15C: If I Could Go Back Again

I can still smell it: that mix of home cooking, cleaning detergents, shampoos, beauty products, and something I can only describe as freshness, probably from my roommate’s freshly made coffee.  It’s been three years since I’ve moved out of that apartment, Wardehofplein 15C, but that smell still lingers faintly to this day. And why would it not? After…

It’s Not the Place, It’s the People

There are days when I lose focus of everything around me and find myself transported back to that tiny bedroom that I tried to make my own in a town whose name I still can’t pronounce right. Everyone who has met me knows that I traveled to the Netherlands for graduate school. I don’t hide…

A Year In Travelling- Part 1

In case you haven’t noticed, life goes by so fast. One day you’re planning every tiny detail for your first trip home and the next you find yourself engaged in a discussion with a world-renowned environmentalist about how it felt to experience altitude after several months in the Netherlands. It’s funny to think that these…

Refusing to Give Up on Lebanon

When I first began drafting this post, I had the sudden urge to bring my ideas to life by drawing comparisons. The two things I had in mind? A stuffed Minnie Mouse doll and my country, Lebanon. At this point, you’re probably going to ask, what on Earth has possessed me to find anything in…

First Impressions are Not Everything in Amsterdam

Amsterdam, the Dutch capital, tends to win over a lot of people, of whom I am not among. Because it is an utter and complete shame to be living in a country for several months and still not have visited its capital, and because we had those wonderful day passes, we stopped in Amsterdam for…

Keukenhof Gardens in Pictures

You can’t possibly live in the Netherlands for a year and miss out on seeing the tulips. Along with clogs, canals, bikes, and windmills, the flowers are a key symbol of the country- even if you have to travel to the North to see them. This is exactly what James and I did one day…

A Small Note About Travelling

The first draft of the thesis is done. June is ending, and soon enough I need to start organizing and packing. It’s undeniable, I’m going back home soon and there’s a lot of bittersweetness involved- but I don’t want to think about that just yet. Of the things I will miss about living in Europe…

Grolsch: Advertisements, Football, and Dutchies

EURO2012 has only been going on for two days and I’m already caught up in the fever and charm of it all. It’s quite something when you’re watching the European football championship while being in Europe, and especially in a country where the fans are so devoted. Though I love so many things about the…

The Long Way Home

When I first found out I’d be going to the Netherlands, I promised myself not to return to Beirut until the program was over. After all, I wanted to enjoy the full European experience, and that includes being in Europe while the holidays are in their full swing. Another factor that was considered was the…

A Modest Twinkling Christmas in Maastricht

Christmas is one of my favorite seasons of the year. It most certainly has to do with the lights, those twinkling bright lights that are hung up for almost a month. They just make everything seem prettier and brighter. I can’t believe that we’re heading towards mid-April already. Wasn’t all the excitation surrounding Christmas just…