My First Full Day in Schoorl
It's my first day in Schoorl and as luck would have it, working night shifts during my final month of summer has prepared me quite well for this jetlag thing that most people tend to experience when going to other continents. Although I am realizing that I need to plan my bedtime a bit better tonight as my body has gotten into this habit of sleeping roughly 8 hours regardless of when I go to bed. Last night I went to bed at 8:00 PM which meant I was up at around 6:00 AM (which is long before the centre is unlocked and the kitchen help is even awake). But luckily this gave me some time to set up my blog and download Photoshop (fortunately I wasn't just sitting in bed, wide awake and bored).
Once everyone else finally woke up and had breakfast my day of adventure truly began. The first thing I did was get a bike and cycle out to the ocean with Dustin Lowen (A fellow from Winnipeg who will be staying in Schoorl when me and Taliah make our way over to Mennorode). The bikes they gave us were great, although they had the backpedal kind of brakes that we had back when we were kids. So if you're like me and feel the need to backpedal while you're coasting, this bike probably isn't for you and definitely took a bit of getting used to for me. And the locks here a fantastic. Essentially the locks just lock up the back tire so that you can't really use the bike, no one really locks their bikes to things like we do (if only we could do that in Canada without having to worry about someone just walking away with the bike and scrapping it for parts). But enough about the bikes, back to the sea. It was my first time seeing the sea and my goodness is it windy. We walked along the shore-line for a while and saw what appeared to be either a jelly-fish or a breast implant (given that is was next to the ocean, I'm going with jellyfish). At one point we even saw a naked man jump into the Ocean and then only after finishing his swim, put on swim trunks. Later on we found out that we had walked through the naked beach, it was just either early enough or cool enough that no one had really shown up by that time. But one thing I noticed very quickly is that walking by the ocean really does a good job a dehydrating you, which was unfortunate because I've noticed that the people here don't really drink. When we first got here for lunch there was milk on the table but no cups to pour it into, for supper there were cups but nothing to put in them and today for dinner there were neither (I'm hoping Mennorode is different in that regard). But on the plus side I'm finally starting to develop a taste for coffee. I'm not sure if it's the way the dutch prepare it or that I'm just happy to actually have a fluid in front of me, but I'm quite enjoying the coffee they've been serving out here.
In the afternoon one of the volunteers took us for a bike ride out to the ocean and then into a neighbouring town (they do a lot of biking out here). On the way to the ocean he was telling us about the sand dunes and how they use them instead of dikes which is why all the towns are built behind the sand dunes. He also showed us a small lake and told us that this is where their drinking water came from, I'm guessing it has something to do with the whole rain cycle filtering out the salt but I didn't really catch exactly why their drinking water had to come from this little pond. Also, apparently the sand dunes help the filtering process in some way (again, didn't catch exactly how). At the ocean we had a beer on this little resurant on the beach. This time there were a lot of Kiteborders out on the ocean, which is something I've always wanted to try (and is yet another reason that I hope they try and split our time up between centre's instead of keeping us in a single location for the whole year).
After the ocean we went into the town and saw the church. It was a general Protestant church which I found very interesting that varying denominations here got along and shared enough of their theology to be able to consistently worship together under the same roof. It was a really old building and it was also really small. Even the organ looked tiny and then we went next door to see the oldest building in the town (which was again quite small). One thing I noticed during our bike ride though is that I am so much more comfortable biking here than in Winnipeg,
But alas, I am running out of steam and hence must send this out before I fall asleep right here on my keyboard. So I'm sorry if there's any details I skipped over, I'll try and do better from now on.