The Internet is back! As we reconnected to the outside world yesterday, I found myself reflecting not for the first time on how relatively low-tech our existence has been of late:
- We no longer have automobiles.
- We do not have a TV (though I watch baseball on MLB.tv, which is mainly what I watched in the US, anyway).
- We have little plastic prepaid phones that we only use to call each other, and no land line, so I hardly use the phone.
- We have gone for two decent stretches without home Internet.
This is not because Holland is low-tech, but because for whatever reason these things haven’t advanced to the top of the priorities list. Which makes me glad in a way, because it somehow confirms that TV and phones etc. are not our priorities….
However, two appliances have risen rapidly on that priority list: a washer, and an oven. Our apartment has a hookup for a washer, but we have to buy one, because the situation on the laundry front is fast becoming desperate. Tim is out right now investigating the potential cost of this and probably visiting an alarmingly cluttered second-hand shop (a kringloopwinkel) that gives me the heebie-jeebies*. Appliances are different here. For instance, I learned this week that we have to buy salt for a reservoir in our dishwasher. This is because the water has more deposits in it, and if you don’t add salt, the dishwasher gets too gunked up inside. For second instance, dryers don’t vent to outside the building. They have some sort of reservoir you have to empty (I have no idea how to do this, and it might explain some of my previous drying problems).
These are the sort of things that you could go two years without knowing if no one told you. It’s a little unnerving.
Our apartment is slowly coming together. Tim (who is too modest to tell you that in eighth grade he won an award for home ec) distinguished himself this week by shortening curtains and assembling several large pieces of furniture from IKEA.
Tim is better at precision work. I am better at diving in and sorting things out, so I mostly unpacked and sorted and cooked exotic desserts.
We met our neighbors on one side (a bunch of young guys) the other night. The occasion was us asking them to turn down their subwoofer at 11PM. I have quite the fear of neighbor/noise issues from a long and bad experience in Cambridge, so this made me edgy, but hopefully it’s not a regular feature here.
*didn’t want to spell this wrong. I will have to check myself for hallucinations the next time I visit the kringloopwinkel.
Main Entry: hee·bie-jee·bies
Variant(s): also hee·by-jee·bies \hbjbz\
Function: noun plural
Etymology: coined ab 1925 by Billy DeBeck died 1942 American cartoonist
: a tense nervous jumpy condition produced by various causes (as strain, irritation, fear, worry) and sometimes marked by hallucinations : jangled nerves : JITTERS — used with the <the unrelenting hollow beat of the jungle drums gave them the heebie-jeebies>