October 20, 2008

More food

Yesterday's dinner


Although looking now at the last picture I don't think any Japanese person would guess that is Japanese curry but it does taste the way it should.

October 19, 2008

A new career: restaurant reviewing

On Friday a friend and I started the weekend with reservations at an apparently well-known Japanese restaurant in The Hague, Oni.

Armed with a notebook and an empty stomach, I was very much looking forward to some fabulous Japanese food. And in case you are wondering, 'why the notebook?', we were going to review the restaurant for a newsletter of a small club.

It really was a lot of fun - 'legitimately' commenting on every tiny detail: from lighting to tempura to toiletseats.

On the other hand, looking back there was hardly any food that we really liked. If we would have been there just to eat and chat I don't think we'd have noticed so much.

The restaurant is very highly listed in several rankings, but apart from the interior and the presentation of the food I fail to see why. It seems the restaurant sees itself as 'modern style Japanese' except that about 80% of their menu is very traditional. The traditional Japanese dishes are nice, not exceptional (although we didn't have any sushi or sashimi so maybe that is better and the bento-boxes did look amazing from a distance). And we didn't like any of the more experimental dishes. E50 becomes a lot for a dinner like that....

Luckily the dessert made up for much of it. Very yummy ginger cheesecake with chocolate icecream. Mmmmmm. And surprisingly good tempura icecream for my friend.


My fire alarm seems to be broken. And as a result it gives off a horribly harsh *peep* every minute or so. Somehow I managed to make it stop on Wednesday night, but since starting up on Friday again I can't get it to switch off. Even my landlord is at a loss, but I do really hope he'll be by some time today again to come and fix it.


October 13, 2008

Primary school

Strangely, I have an exam tomorrow so I have spent the day at home on study leave to prepare for it. I had kind of forgotten about it, until I registered two weeks ago and the lady on the phone wished me luck studying. Uhm.... oh right.

What I am studying? INCO-terms, export marketing strategies, customs documents, letters of credit and other forms of documentary credit, and so on as long as it has to do with export. It sounds more complicated than it is and I am pretty sure I'll be fine tomorrow.

And with that attitude I started going through my course book and old exams this morning, until I came to the calculation assignments.

"You are sending 1000 flowerpots and 1500 chairs to the US. Your transport costs are E2500. Your agent receives a 15% commission. The exhange rate USD-Euro is 1-0.87. What are your total costs in USD?"


I still don't get why every exam holds three of these questions but it took me a while to get out my math skills from 8th grade and work it out properly.


October 11, 2008

Pretty Cool People Interviews: Miranda July

For today's birthday friend I got Miranda July's collection of short stories No one belongs here more than you, a book I found for myself about a year ago and which I had to buy instantly. Miranda July is also the director of the movie 'Me And You And Everyone We Know' - a movie I completely loved, and so I couldn't leave the book in the shop. And it seemed like the perfect book for today's friend.

July seems to be a truly creative spirit and I love how she makes very ordinary situations very unordinary, in her movies, her books and her other projects. One of which I learned about today when a fellow-fan saw the book I got.

This project (Learning To Love You More)is discussed in the video. It looks like so much fun. Go watch it, and go read the book and go see the movie.

October 05, 2008

Finally: piiictures

Of course, there's more here

October 03, 2008

Three things:

1. Darbuka
Yesterday (well, officially, since last week) I started my latest experiment: I'm now learning how to play the darbuka. It is an Arabic drum, played with your hands - so in a way similar to an African djembe.
I was exhausted on my way there, and could only think I'd made a big mistake. The place where the course is at is at night, at least an hour away from work, and my house is in the middle. Not exactly smartly located.
But I left with lots of new energy and excited about everything that has been going on. Great feeling!

2. 2 & 3 October
I really don't fit in this town - I almost hate these two dates, but they are on which the biggest party in my town gets celebrated. Despite the bad weather, it took me half an hour to get home tonight (instead of the 7-minute bike ride) trying to find my way through drunken, screaming people and through neon lights and lots of noise. Ugh. One more day to go.

3. Travel (hey, why not)
Actually, it's work. I'm working on a project next to my regular day job which is great to do, very challenging, but very fun and I'm learning a lot from it. I had considered the possibility of travelling as part of it but it didn't really seem probable. Until a colleague of mine from this department that I'm working for starting talking about it himself. Hmmmm. Unfortunately the best opportunity clashes with another work trip (woe is me...) but I'm definitely going to work something out for this! India, here I come :-)