Living the dream in Leiden

Leiden (the Netherlands), 20/11/12: On Tuesday we travelled to the neighbouring university town of Leiden to visit Vikki & Kyl, friends from Perth who upped stumps and relocated here a couple of years ago.

Like so many other places we’ve visited, Leiden is an old city with an interesting history. It once rivalled Amsterdam in terms of size but these days appears more modest, yet it has retained many of the qualities of a big Dutch city from centuries ago. In short, it’s a beautiful place to live.

Before we met with K&V, we did some light touristing of our own around Leiden.

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Not tilting at so much as reclining near windmills

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Gurning at canals

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According to the Nicole clock, it's about a quarter to 5. Not too far off the money actually.

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We got in there for a closer look too. Pretty interesting and, for me, pleasingly not very OH&S compliant. In a good wind those sails really move. I wonder how many tourists they claim each year? Very few I'd suggest.

We caught K&V after office hours and, to kick things off, got a bit of a tour of the dream they’re living.

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The back verandah. Great view of everyone else's back verandah's and vice versa.

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The local parish

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The local pet shop featured the usual bunnies and kitties but also African spiders, large tortoises, exotic reptiles and tropical birds. Quite awesome - no need for a local zoo. Almost certainly legit but still felt a little back-room.

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The view out the front window to the canal below. Freezing now but in summer, just open the place up. Bewdiful. Winter does have the advantage of pretty lights and, when it gets really cold, ice skating down the canal. Now THAT'S commuting.

Further to the pleasure of their company, we were also treated to a very nice Dutch dinner (previously documented) before heading back to Den Haag with the definite impression that this place offers a lifestyle choice that you could really get used to. Thanks Kyl & Vikki!

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