Breda is a huge shopping hub with many stores throughout the city centre. A few days a week, there is an amazing market with local produce, meats, breads, clothing, and much more. On Saturdays, the market is only a couple of minutes away by bicycle.
Today was the orientation day for international students. The good news is I have over 300 new people to be-friend. Another success of the day, I found a Jumbo near my apartment! HOORAY! I cooked my first meal in my kitchen. This is just an everyday task at home, but here at EasyStreet, this was an amazing hurdle to overcome. I cooked up gerookte zalm, rissotto, and asparagus – and savoured every bite. It has been raining a lot, I hope to see some sun over the next couple of days. Tonight, all of the new international students are going out on a pub crawl. If this night is anything like previous nights out in the city, it will be nothing short of amazing.
Here are some culture related facts that I have encountered so far in the Netherlands. Delicious treats to indulge in are black licorice (or drops) and stroopwafels. Most stores are closed on the weekends, and if one ever finds themselves in the store about five minutes to closing, they will be asked to leave. The Dutch like to go home right on time. A typical Dutch person is very open and honest – to the point where it can be interpreted as rude. But it isn’t meant to be that way! My favourite of all, is that one must be incredibly on time, if not early for appointments and meetings. A typical meal is brined herring, served with chopped onion. Hagelslag is small chocolate flakes that are put on buttered bread for breakfast. Dutch people do not like to stick out from the crowd. They actually find it offensive if someone is too obtuse. Lastly, a coffee shop is not a place to go for coffee. It is a place for the sale of soft drugs, like marijuana. Ice skating is very popular. People watch it like Canadians watch hockey, at home with friends and drinks. Soccer, or football, on the other hand, is a social event where people go to the pub dressed in their team’s colours and have fun!