|Tulips, dunes and sea, May 2012|
|During my visits of the Netherlands it has become a tradition to spend a few days with my sister and her husband, in North-Holland.|
And if it happens to be spring, of course we have to visit the flower fields. And the Poldertuin, a minor version of the famous Keukenhof.
April was a very cold month this time, so the tulips, daffodils and hyacinths were still in full bloom.
The tulips in the tulip fields are grown for the bulbs, not for the flowers. When the flowers open, they are cut unceremoniously and thrown away, so all the nutrients can be used by the mother-bulb to grow small baby-bulbs..:-)
Usually each field has its own color, so we were intrigued when we saw a tulip field with many colors. It turned out to be a "pick your own tulip" farm.
Big fun, especially for families with kids. We collected a nice bunch for 4 Euro.
It was the 4th of May, which in the Netherlands is a Memorial Day for all those who died in WWII and later wars. The main ceremony is in Amsterdam, where the Queen and Crown Prince are the first ones to lay a wreath at the National Monument. Then at 8pm the town comes to a standstill for 2 minutes silence.
Very impressive, in the past I always went there. The sudden silence, where you only hear some pigeons, it is an emotional moment.
This time, after raising the flag half-mast, we watched the ceremony on TV.
And had a nice dinner later.
The next morning we went for a long walk in the dunes near the North Sea. One of the two nuclear reactors of the Netherlands is located here.Not meant for energy production, but for medicinal purposes (radio-isotopes)
More views of the tulip fields. When we arrived at the beach we were impressed by the waves and the surf. Temperature of the seawater is about 10 degrees, br.
In spite of the cold,some families were already enjoying the sandy beach. We had some food and walked back through the pine forest, where you could see in many places that spring had really started.