I had planned to go to Rotterdam on my own today however, train track maintenance didn’t really let that happen. I got to the train station, scanned my discount ticket to go through the turnstile and only then did I notice that the Intercity trains to Dordrecht (the direction I wanted to go) were canceled. So I thought “Ok, no big deal. For sure the next train in half an hour should be running on time, so I waited a little bit until that next train showed up on the schedule monitor and that one was also canceled. Ok, hmmm…something is going on.
I decided to walk around the little town area and see what I find and give one more train a chance to show up and head to Dordrecht. I ended up finding a beautiful white scarf with blue and red flowers on it; it’s beautiful and wasn’t very expensive so I purchased it and headed back to the train station. A third train I was waiting for was also canceled so I figured that I’d better not try too hard to get to Rotterdam and then not be able to get back to Almere; that would be bad. So I gave up and walked home and worked on my blog and travel plans for the day. Jorgo said it was because of train track maintenance between Amsterdam and Dordrecht.
My friend Jorgo has Thursdays off (and he took Friday off too) so we had a little mini-holiday in the Netherlands. 🙂
Since I didn’t go to Rotterdam the previous day, and since Jorgo found a paracord store in Rotterdam, it made sense that we should just go together. See, Jorgo makes pretty cool “survival bracelets” which are basically bracelets made out of two meters of paracord. I wanted to learn how to make these bracelets so I could give them to friends I meet traveling, friends at home, and family of course. 🙂
So, we caught a train down to Rotterdam and then walked a few kilometers to the Paracord.EU store which isn’t really a proper “store front.” It’s more of a small paracord warehouse that accepts walk-in customers. On the way to the paracord store, we walked by a set of serious flood gates and, with my curiosity peaked, found a map showing an alignment of flood protection measures. Pretty cool!
We got to the paracord store I think around 1pm and ended up being there till about 3pm. It took a while to choose which colors we wanted, write them on a piece of paper, choose which accessories we wanted to sew onto the bracelet, and then have the people working there cut the rope, make the “invoice” and then pay.
Here is a view of the pretty paracord that I bought.
And some metal accessories in addition to the New Zealand greenstones that I got in Taupo.
Since it was quite a walk to walk from the Paracord.EU store back to City Centre, we decided we could take the ferry which was very close to the paracord store and went directly to City Centre. We ate the lunch we had brought on the pier while waiting for the ferry going in the right direction (towards Rotterdam city centre, not Dordrecht).
Apparently I found Noah’s Ark here in the Rotterdam Harbor.
Now, just look at and appreciate the architecture and engineering that went into that building to the right of the bridge but left of the cruise ship. The offsetting and irregularness of the upper half of the buildings gives it the impression of buildings being stacked on top of buildings without fitting properly. I mean, those are buildings we’re talking about! WOW!! Thumbs up to (I’m assuming) Dutch architects and engineers who figured out how to make that work. Goodness!
Continuing our walk, we came upon a bridge where married couples had put a lock with their names on it and thrown the key into the harbor. The picture below is my favorite of the several that I took.
This suspension bridge is pretty sweet as well. I saw the scale model of this bridge at Madurodam and was so excited to see it in actual full size here in Rotterdam!
The photo below is my attempt at capturing an artistic photo of this awesome piece of architecture and engineering.
We decided to get dinner in City Centre since we were both tired, hungry, and a bit cold by this point. Then, after dinner, we caught the train back north to Almere. Great times in Rotterdam. 🙂