October 18, 2002 GMT
Europe -3

Amsterdam (11-09-2002) till Amsterdam (18-10-2002)

The flight back home was without any delays although it was 11 September when we arrived at Schiphol. Ed and Martins father were picking us up from the airport and that meant a lot to us as they had to be at the airport at 7 am.. After a real Dutch cup of coffee we headed to Amersfoort where we stayed at Ed & Ellen's house for a couple of days as Marie Louise wasn't supposed to know that we had arrived. In fact almost no one knew we were back in Holland and that made it easier for us to do the things we had to do. Our five weeks back home were about going to be some hectic ones. On the 13 September we rode to Marie Louise's place and we surprised her by being the first to congratulate her for her birthday and we had a nice day although she had to go to school in between.

Europe; 11-09-2002 / 18-10-2002
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Europe; 11-09-2002 / 18-10-2002

Marie Louise
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Marie Louise

The apartment I was living in together with Marie Louise had to become hers only so I had decided to remove all my stuff from the house and get rid of a lot of it and put the rest in storage. Therefore Martin and I were busy for a while. Marie Louise had already stacked most of my stuff she didn't like in a bedroom. We started to sort out the whole apartment room by room and we ended up with stacks of moving boxes everywhere. A part of it was moved to my house in France where we drove to for a couple of days with a fully loaded car where there was only a little space left for Belle, my dog I was really pleased to see back. We stayed in France for 3 days only so we were barely able to unpack the car and its boxes and certainly not to relax.

Belle among the boxes
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Belle among the boxes

Slowly the news got around that we were back so we had to see some people which we didn't mind as long as it fitted in our plans because we were far from ready yet. One of the highlights was a visit at Erik, our third Musketeer whom we hadn't seen since he had left us behind in Hanoi last February. No need to mention that it was great to see him back... and lucky as his Ukrainian girlfriend had decided to move in with him in Holland in December.

The three Musketeers back together
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The three Musketeers back together

We also had to do the ordinary things as getting new vaccinations, see the dentist and buy new stuff to replace old or broken ones. But furthermore we had to help Marie Louise to install her fully in the apartment and this meant moving in more stuff with Dingemans car and we were glad Menno helped us.

Our working holiday
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Our working holiday

No wonder we had a exhausting 5 weeks but fortunately they were sooner gone as expected. But before we flew back to Indonesia my son Dingeman surprised us to introduce Selma, his new girlfriend, to us.

Dingeman & Selma
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Dingeman & Selma

So we celebrated this with a nice diner in a steakhouse.

Saying goodbye was difficult, as expected, but for us it was time to move on and things had changed dramatically as during our stay in Holland the Bali-bombs exploded and people warned us not to go back to Indonesia. But we had to as our motorbikes were still waiting for our return to Bandung. The original plans of spending another two months in Indonesia was changed into travel to Denpasar (Bali) and leave the country for New Zealand as soon as possible. We were a little bit worried as we knew that Jason and Gion were in Denpasar during the explosions but we later received an email that they had been often in the explosion-area but they had left the afternoon before the explosion and so they were very lucky.

Posted by Martin Rooiman at 03:05 AM GMT

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