A great day with some very special people
Apeldoorn Travel Blog› entry 1 of 1 › view all entries
Today was my third TB meet-up. I had been to one in Friesland and one in Leiden but this was the first one I actually organised myself which was a lot of fun! Initially the plan was for me to go to a presentation about Australia, held by a Dutch travel company. To a lot of people that might sound strange as I lived in Australia for almost six years. The reason for me to go here was to spy. Yes, to SPY. I would love to start a travel organisation specialising in Australia sometime in the future, and I am doing a lot of research which includes checking out my potential competition! So I had a date and a time but decided I might as well make the most of it and see a bit of Apeldoorn or have coffee with a couple of people.
I took the train from Meppel (with my mum and youngest daughter initially as they were travelling to Ireland today) and after a couple of changes arrived in Apeldoorn with about an hour to spare. Luckily Carla got there early as well and we sat down at cafe La Place at the trainstation with some coffee and caught up on everything that had happened since we saw each other last in Leiden. Then Maike arrived and we waited around for a little bit for a few others to arrive.
The presentation was ok, although nothing to write home about. I think I could have found a lot more information on TB than this organisation was giving us, it was all the standard stuff. A few things that bothered me was that even though the people presenting had lived in Australia, they could not pronounce anything correctly.
After the presentation we went back to the train station and met up with the others. From there we walked to De Graaf van Vlaanderen, where I had reserved space for the group. It was not easy to find as there is no sign on the outside but apparently they are still in the process of getting permission from the local government as is a protected building... It's a bar with a lot (and I mean a lot!) of Belgian beers, and I wanted to make it a little bit international.
After leaving the bar we walked to Mediterrance, a restaurant where I had booked an all inclusive buffet. Soup, salads, meat, fish and other side dishes, beer, wine, soft drinks and coffee and tea, all you can eat and drink (within three hours) for €27,50. Not a bad deal I thought! All the food was Mediterranean style and most of it was quite nice. We had an excellent time here, and it made it very special when Anna, BJ and myself got leied, and later on were given a dessert with fireworks and some wonderful presents from our fellow TB-ers! Thanks again guys.
Just before leaving the restaurant we had a group picture taken with some chocolate letters (great idea Jos, as if we weren't full enough yet! :P) by the chef, who had a very hard time understanding the words: stand on the chair! We then went outside and some of us (including Daniel who was staying in Meppel for the night and myself) had to say our goodbyes... So Carla, Eef, Daniel and I walked back to the train station and got on our respective trains, or so we thought.... The train Daniel and I were supposed to get on arrived at a different platform, and the train which was at the platform we thought we were leaving from took us to Zutphen! (I know, I should have double checked.
It was a great day and I'm glad I got to talk to some people I hadn't spoken to (in real life) before. Still it was not enough though, but with a group this size that is hard to do. But there will be other meet-ups!
I would like to thank a very good friend of mine who unfortunately couldn't be there but made sure his presence was felt through others!
PS: The quality of my pictures is not great unfortunately but I didn't want to "flash" people all the time. You get the idea though!