Tuesday, 10 June 2008


A sunny day, and I was up early. I walked towards Frankendael.

krugerplein looking north; I live behind one of the yellow windows

When you walk you have the chance to discover new things all the time, even when you're walking the same route every day. I happened to look into one of the little side lanes of Frankendael and saw a row of benches that I hadn't noticed before. They were made to look like swans. A bit tacky, but in the 18th century environment of Frankendael it fits.

swan bench

I walked along Middenweg and took a short cut through the Huygensplein shopping centre because I wanted to get some money from the hole in the wall. Money burns in my pocket; it also burned in the hole in the wall.

plastic money

In the morning I worked on a website for a conference we're organizing in September. I made a bunch of changes and then needed some information from the organizing committee. I told them I needed it pronto, since tomorrow is my regular day off, and the site has to go live on Thursday afternoon.

we had lunch on the terrace

At 15:45 my phone rang; the organizing committee had a crisis meeting. Could I come to the meeting? I usually leave around 16:00. When I used to leave at 17:00 they would always phone me at 16:45. We had the meeting, answers to my questions were given and I told them I have standing orders from both my group leader and the director not to work on my day off, the evenings or the weekends.

I told them the changes would be made on Thursday morning, which would give them time to check everything on Thursday afternoon and then the email to the world announcing the site could go out on Friday. They all nodded and said they understood. No problem. Smart people, professors.

javastraat, rubber plantation

It was now after 16:30 and I escaped the building. I walked to Javastraat to do some window shopping. They've broken up both sides of the street now. Instead of pavement tiles the sand was covered with rubber mats, not the normal wooden planking. These rubber mats are not nice for me to walk on. They give way under my feet and that makes my ankle hurt. I walked dead slow 'cause that was the only way I could stop my ankle from twisting. At the end of Javastraat I passed under the railway and sat down on the terrace of the Ponteneur.

ponteneur, looking towards Muiderpoort station

The ponteneur is an 'eetcafé', so I thought I might have dinner there. I ordered a Cola light and studied the menu. Lots of nice things at the right prices, but nothing I fancied for dinner today.

ponteneur, looking into 1e van Swindenstraat

So I walked on towards Oosterpark, turned left and checked the other 'eetcafés' on the Linnaeusstraat. None had a menu I wanted to eat today. All of a sudden I developed a craving for Indian food. Naan! Lots of Naan! I walked to Transvaalstraat where I knew the nearest Indian restaurant was located. I sat down in the Natraj. There were a few people inside for take-away meals but I was the only one sitting down for a meal. I ordered Onion Bhaji. They were very tasty.

onion bahji aka pakora

The main course was Saag Paneer, a concoction of spinach and home made Indian cheese. Very vegetarian. I also ordered a Naan to go with the Saag Paneer. I ate only half the rice. The waitress came a few times to ask me if everything was alright. She then came and asked me where I lived. I think she was starved for conversation, as too many people probably only come in for take-away meals.

Our conversation was cut short by a Chinese delivery man who brought in stacks of boxes for the take-away meals. The waitress' Dutch isn't too good; she mostly speaks English with a very cute Indian accent. The delivery man's English was non-existant, and his Dutch wasn't too good either. Their conversation on where to sign for the shipment took about half an hour, by which time I had finished my meal.

pilav rice, saag paneer & naan

I walked home along the Ringdijk. When I got home I uploaded today's batch of photos to Flickr and then checked my email. There was one from the organizing committee, sent at 17:14. A certain deadline could not be moved, so the website has to go online on Thursday morning. The question now is: do I work tonight or do I work on my day off? Decisions, decisions, always decisions…


Renate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Renate said...

oh my... maybe you shouldn't have walked but signalled the USS Havhingsten to beam you up for a trip to Raisa until Thursday morning!

Next time.

Nicole said...

I love how other people's deadlines are always so important, but nobody ever respects the studio deadline of getting their shit information in on time.

I had paneer just the other day but wasn't impressed with the brand I bought. I will have to look around for another type. The one I used to buy at the NatuurWinkel was excellent.

And I agree, you see so much more of the world when you walk :)

Oscar said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Oscar said...

I would delegate the decision making, provided the set of options that you have. That limits the professors thinkable universe with the goal to get them from their empirical cloud down to Earth.

I had to make such statements before in easy understandable one-liners. It made me sound harsh in most cases. But it pays off to push my thoughts and concern into their minds and make it part of their problem again. (Re)delegation is a bliss :-) and should be part of anybodies day to day survival.

Which reminds me that you wore a appropriate T-Shirt on the Blog entry date: "Social Engineering Specialist".