Friday, December 9, 2011

Rotterdam, Travel, and Delft

Rotterdam to Delft

Today was interesting.  I left Amsterdam at 10 am and took a train to Rotterdam.  The train ride was fine, and I got out and spent about two and half hours walking the city.  I had lunch at a pancake house, went in one of the weird cube houses, and looked in the church, going back once the hail and wind picked up.  (Sunny one minute, hail the next).  I then tried to take a train to Delft.  My original ticket was a return for Delft but the woman told me to get off at Rotterdam or wherever I wanted (the tickets aren't checked).  The train station at Rotterdam was a nightmare- no information desk, hordes of people, and everything only written in Dutch, while half the station was under construction.  I got on what I thought was the right train, and it was a train with no stops that went all the way back to Amsterdam.  At Amsterdam I then spent about 40 minutes trying to find a train to Delft.  I finally found one, but there was a technical issue and the train stopped in the Hague, forcing everyone to disembark (luckily a woman next to me told me what was going on, no English announcements or anything).  I found a train from the Hague to Delft, but didn't arrive until just after 5, when it was already dark.  I walked around, taking pictures.  Despite the dark, I still got a bit of a feel for the city, which is similar to Amsterdam with its canals, bridges, and gabled houses.  I went to a few stores, then went to the first open restaurant I could find, desperately seeking a bathroom.  It turned out to be a gourmet "tasting" restaurant- but they allowed me to get a single dish (rather than the twenty expensive tasting ones), a delicious rarebit, which is a type of rabbit served with cheese and veggies on toast.  Finally made it back to Amsterdam, quite tired.  I should note that despite the train issues, it was a good day, saw some good stuff, and I got a lot of reading done on the trains.

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