July 31, 2009

What a surprise

I would want to be on this subway in Paris.....

July 30, 2009

Recipe: Lemon-goat cheese tagliatelle

Yesterday I made this perfect summer dish. It's based on a recipe I saw in the newspaper this morning. It's ideal for dinner al fresco and extra nice with a cool glass of white wine I think. Bonus: you can make it within 10 minutes. Promise!

Lemon-goat cheese tagliatelle
(serves 2)
adapted from nrcnext

250 g / 3 cups fresh tagliatelle
half a lemon
100 g / about 1/2 cup soft goat cheese
3 tablespoons of olive oil
75 g / 3 cups rocket lettuce
two tablespoons of pine nuts
150 g / 1 cup half dried tomatoes (I bought mine at the market this time but you can also make them yourself quite easily, find out how right here)
salt and pepper

Boil the tagliatelle as instructed on the package with a tablespoon of olive oil and some salt.

Roast the pine nuts until they are light brown and let them cool on a plate.

Wash the lemon with luke warm water and grate the zest.

Mix the zest in a bowl with the goat cheese, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 2 teaspoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice and some salt and pepper.

Drain the pasta but hold on to one cup of the water and add this to your lemon-cheese mix.

Stir in the lemon-cheese mix with the tagliatelle.

Add the rocket lettuce, tomatoes and pine nuts.

Add salt, pepper and lemon juice to your liking.

If you like, you could even top the dish with some parmezan cheese, but I think it doesn't really need it.
Tip: use a larger pan than I did!


July 29, 2009

My favorite spot

The final post in the Through Her Eyes series I've participated in is now online. Check it out right here!

The assignment for this fourth week was to send in pictures of my favorite spot. Because the pictures are so small in the THE post over at Layers of Meaning and because the text has been edited a bit, I thought I'd share my original text and pictures with you here....

I wanted to show you two places that I visit pretty much every Saturday: my local market and library. Both are in the historic city centre of my Dutch town. I just love walking around all the different stalls at the market. I usually buy a lot of cheap fruit and vegetables, but I’m also a huge fan of all the Mediterranean products that are sold here. I don’t mind that it’s busy at the market, I actually enjoy seeing so many people together and I absolutely love how the vendors shout out their best offers as loud as they can (“Pineapples! Two for 1,50! Delicious juicy Piiiiineapples!!”).

The local market, right next to the canals. In the background you can see our city hall.

It’s much more quiet at my local library. I can just spend hours there browsing through the novels, cookbooks and glossy travel books. My perfect Saturday afternoon I enjoy on our sunny balcony with new books, a glass of wine and garlic olives, almonds and fresh feta cheese from the market….

Our local library with one of the city's churches in the background.
And bikes. Of course....

July 28, 2009

Book club: first meeting

As I announced earlier this week, last Wednesday I really achieved my first goal from my life list: my new book club met to discuss the first book we all read. We did not really know how to shape our discussion, whether we should ask each other questions or whether we should just start talking. I think this lack of structure caused our discussion about the book to be rather short. But I guess it is also fair to say that we were also distracted by other urgent matters we had to discuss, such as upcoming graduation, job interviews, men etc. (My friend S. had an interview for a PhD position on Thursday and found out on Friday she got it! Yay!).

Still, if any of you has a good idea on how to structure a book club meeting and how to really accellerate the discussion, I would be very grateful if you could leave a comment!

For next time we are reading One Day by David Nicholls. The cover looks great so I can't wait to dig in.

(if you haven't read the Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger yet and you're contemplating doing so (you should! you should!), DON'T read on!)

Besides the logistics of time travel, I think the most important theme we talked about regarding the book was predestination. I think I would become so frustrated if I knew it didn't matter what I would decide to do, the effect was already decided. Another friend of mine felt it would be quite comforting to know that it wouldn't matter. Like when Clare and Henry go house hunting, Clare doesn't even get the chance to form an opinion about any of the places because Henry already knows. I wouldn't have it. I'm a bit of a smarty pants and I would be sure to check it out myself and maybe even push it. Just because. But then, even if I would push it, I would know that it wouldn't work. It wouldn't make a difference. How frustrating. Like you're in a really fast current and you just have to go along...

Another thing we discussed about a lot, was the end. Some of my friends felt a happy ending would have been much more satisfying, while I feel that a book doesn't always have to have a happy ending. It can make a book so much more interesting, so much more thought provoking. The book left me sad and confused but I think that's also a beautiful thing a book can do for you.

What did you guys think about these issues?

July 27, 2009


... Have you noticed my new blog header?

I decided I really needed to personalize the blog and do something about the header. I used a picture I took in El Chalten in Argentina last year. (Looking for a magnificent travel destination? Go to Argentina and Chile!!!!)

Bariloche, Argentina

I am on a deadline for my final thesis and should really be writing but I am just dreading it, which is why I take up any project that will take my mind of the work I should be spending my time on... Now I've finished the header I have to think of something else that needs attention urgently. Maybe I should clean the windows? Reorganize my books? Bake a cake?

Slipped my mind...

I only realised just now that I completely forgot to tell you the third post in the Through Her Eyes series over at Layers of Meaning was posted last week! Go check it out! It shows where I do my blogging and features some really great bloggers. I am honoured to be part of this series! The fourth and final post will be on some time this week. I'll try to be a bit more on top of things this time!

July 22, 2009

Paper Heart

I just came across this trailer online and it has me all excited about Paper Heart.

Paper Heart seems to be half documentary half fiction and it features some great people from Juno (which I adored), Knocked Up and How I Met Your Mother. I'm expecting a very funny, cute and original film....

Cute bonus: the website for the movie also features an awesomely cute Mash Game, which I am sure you've all played when you were little....

Can't wait!

July 20, 2009

Remember my goals

It's been a while since I posted about my life list. It seems like no work has been done. But that's not the case really.

One of my goals was to start up a book club.

White rose

And that's what I've done!

This Wednesday me and three of my best girlfriends will sit down with cupcakes and tea for the first meeting of our newly established book club, discussing The Time Traveler's Wife. I absolutely loved the book and I am looking forward to talk about it with my friends.

I'm also looking forward to start reading the next book, which will be reveiled on Wednesday.

I will definitely tell you more about achieving this goal after our first meeting, but for now it seems like I can cross the first thing off my list!

July 16, 2009

THE series part two

The second part of the Through Her Eyes series yours truly participated in is online! Check it out here.

July 15, 2009


MrBee and I went to see Regina Spektor play in Amsterdam last night. She performed at a venue called Paradiso, an old church with high ceilings, glass stained windows behind the stage and a beautiful balcony right in the center of Amsterdam. It's really a beautiful place.

It was the perfect setting for the concert. Regina was angelic. I can't believe her voice, she was so good. I'll be listening to her new album non stop for the next couple of days I think...

July 10, 2009

Sweden rocks!


How amazing is this?? Isn't it just the best tribute possible?

This vid reminds me of the massive dance off in the Antwerpen central station I posted last month.

This sort of stuff just makes my day.

I wanna dance tonight!

July 9, 2009

Out there!

Exciting news! I am featured on this month's Through Her Eyes series over at Layers of Meaning. I love this blog and the THE series especially. I strongly advise you to check it out! The first edition came online just today and this week you can check out what's in my purse....

July 7, 2009

Night At The Museum

In the Dutch university town I live in we have quite a number of really good museums. Tourists from all over the world come here to enjoy paintings by Dutch masters, to see special types of tulips in the botanical garden, to marvel at the Egyptian mummies. Yet somehow in the six years I have lived in this town I had visited only a few of them.

Well, last Saturday we had the perfect opportunity: Museum Night. Museum Night has been an annual event in Amsterdam for quite some years now, but this was the first time it was organized in my town. Seven large museums were open from 8pm until 1am with afterparties at local clubs following. They had bands playing next to Rembrandt paintings, cocktail bars within exhibitions about Japanese folklore, lounge areas in the botanical gardens, DJs in Egyptian temples, lectures, workshops, performance art...

Since most of these museums are located within the historical center of the city, they were all within walking distance. However, there were also buses to take you from one place to the next. And, yes, as you would expect from Holland, there were bike taxis (riksjas) and also boats to take you to museums located next to canals...

Mr Bee and I had a great night. We got to see four museums in one night. We learned things about our city we didn't even know. We were driven around in a riskja. We took a tour in a boat. We enjoyed the lights from the canals.

My town. picture from flickr

Perfect combo of going out, having a drink and still feeling like we did something interesting with our night....

July 6, 2009

I had to hand in a paper on Friday which I hadn't started in time. Apparently one thing I haven't learned during my seven years of academics is working with a deadline. I had to pull an all-nighter in order to finish it on time, working the entire thursday night and friday morning....I have no idea whether the paper is any good, but at least it's done. And, not unimportantly, it was the final paper I had to write to obtain my Master's. Now all I need to do is complete my thesis and I will be Master of Science! I just need to hang in there and get it done. Whooaah!

(No particular reason to post this picture, I'm just busy reorganizing my digital photographs and I came across a couple of rather nice pictures I took in Rome last year)