Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas Day Family Dinner

Friday, 25-December-2009 - Veghel - This year, Chris and Claudia hosted the Weiss Family Christmas get-together. We drew names secretly to suprise each other with a present. Great meal, great company.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

De Zeven Eiken Christmas Brunch

Sunday, 20-December-2009 - Veghel - Marij and I went to the neighborhood association De Zeven Eiken Christmas Brunch located in the Peellandstraat. Marij lived in this street with her mother and brother Jo when I came to the Netherlands in 1975.

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Christmas Newsletter

Saturday, 19-December-2009 - Veghel - I just updated my home page to include this year's family newsletter. We're again sending an e-mail instead of a Christmas card this year to those who use internet. Katherine provided the artwork you see here. Wishing you a blessed Holiday Season and a Happy New Year.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Driving to Work

Friday, 18-December-2009 - Veghel/Tilburg - We got some snow yesterday--it was slow and slippery getting home. Today, the sun came up shining before it disappeared behind clouds--it got my attention, along with the newly fallen snow.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Fallen Skater

Monday, 14-dec-2009 - Handel- Went to funeral services today with Marij for Fun-on-Wheels skater and friend Michel van den Brand (39). Unknown to me, he suffered from unbearable depression--the cause of his death. I will always cherish his memory.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Dale Turns 60

Wednesday, 25-November-2009 - Veghel - I turned 60 today, and I feel pretty good. The more I think about it, the better I feel. I always did like the sixties.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Mountain Biking in Uden

Saturday, 21-November--2009 - Uden - I looked up and saw a magnificient ringed-neck pheasant in our back yard. I was a warm and sunny morning. I decided to cimb on my mountain bike and see where I ended up. I rode in the direction of the nature park De Maashorst.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Mexican Flu Vaccinaton

Tuesday, 10-November-2009 - Veghel - Got my second flu vaccination this year. This time, it was for the Mexican Flu, as we call influenza H1N1 2009 here in the Netherlands. As of 1 November 2009, worldwide more than 199 countries and overseas territories/communities have reported laboratory confirmed cases of pandemic influenza H1N1 2009, including over 6000 deaths.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Boekel Tuesday

Tuesday, 25-August-2009 - Boekel - The days are getting shorter.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Go Skate Kampina

Sunday, 23-August-2009 - Boxtel - Fun-on-wheels inline skating. Good for 26 km.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

100 Km Electroworld Skating in Boekel

Saturday, 22-August-2009 - Boekel - What a great day for skating! It was time for this year's 100 km Electroworld Skeelertocht (Inline Skating Tour).

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Tuesday Skating

Tuesday, 18-August-2009 - Boekel - It was the last training session before the 100km tour on Saturday. We headed in the direction of Gemert. We got back just after dark. Bart turned his running lights on so we could be seen from behind. We were good for 30 km on this warm evening.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

105 Km on Skates

Saturday, 8-August-2009 - Oirschot, NL/Postel, BE - It was the farthest I ever skated in one day. Seventeen skaters and three moped riders made the trip from Oirschot to the Postel Abby in Belgium, and back--105 km! We had perfect weather, smooth routes through wooded areas. We departed at 0930 and returned at 1900. The more experienced and stronger skaters kept a good eye on the first-timers. Everyone made it back in good health. Fun-on-wheels skater Pieter Smits was our host and guide. He had a swimming pool and a barbecue waiting for us when got back. It was a truly a day to remember.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Summer Evening Skating Fun

Tuesday, 4-aug-2009 - Boekel - Another great skating evening in Boekel--30 km.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Protecting the Small Planet Earth

Sunday, 2-August-2009 - Boxtel - No skating today--got rained out. Marij and I took this opportunity to go De Kleine Aarde (the small planet Earth), an information center for the environment in Boxtel about 19 km away. Co-generation home heaters employing a stirling engine, solar panels, and 500 watt wind turbines--all got my full attention.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

It All Starts with Clarity

Saturday, 1-August-2009 - Veghel - "It all starts with clarity." Found a good site to help me with my job search through LinkedIn.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Tuesday Skating

Tuesday, 28-July-2009 - Boekel - Great weather, great skate. This evening's route was to Café Restaurant Erica in Sint Hubert--30 km round trip.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Last Day of Vacation

Sunday, 26-July-2009 - Hellevoetsluis - I really enjoyed my stay in Hellevoetsluis. After breakfast, I packed and washed my bedding. A little after lunchtime, I said goodby to Katherine and martin; and I headed back to Veghel.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Welcome Return

Saturday, 25-July-2009 - Hellevoetsluis - Today Katherine, Martin, and dog Bowie (yes, like David Bowie) were returning from their vacation in Staphorst. Noticed that I was supposed to place the trash bin at the curb last Wednesday. Oops. I brought one bag to the recycling station to leave a little room left over--the next pickup was two weeks away. Sorry about that. We agreed that going out to eat at the Greek restaurant later would be nice, and that it would be fine if I went skating first. So took advantage of the wonderful sunny weather and headed for my favorite stretch along the Haringvliet waterway.

Friday, July 24, 2009

Nijmegen Four-day Marches End with Gladiolas

Friday, 24-July-2009 - Hellevoetsluis - The cats let me sleep in 'til around 1000. I stayed up late at the pc catching up with my weblog. Sent a pic I took yesterday to the Rotterdams Dagblad daily newspaper for the summer photo contest. The weather changed back and forth througout the day from overcast and rainy to sunny blue skies. I spent more time networking using LinkedIn. In the evening, watched TV reports showing some of the 37,106 people crossing the finish line of the annual Nijmegen Four-day Marches--this year for the 100th time. Traditionally, each of the finishers receives gladiolas from a cheering supporter along the sidelines.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Vacation Day 6

Thursday, 23-July-2009 - Hellevoetsluis - Started out rainy, but turned into a beautiful sunny day. Went skating after the cats ate supper. Skated over the Haringvlietdam to the Stellendam fishing harbor. I rolled past huge North Sea fishing trawlers including the GO-5 Ora et Labora (Pray and Work). Got back to Hellevoetsluis to see three children having fun jumping into the canal.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Spaghetti for Supper

Wednesday, 22-July-2009 - Hellevoetsluis - Mostly pc time today. Filled in a profile at LinkedIn to help with my job search. Got a welcome message from Joost Asser, my retirement benefits counselor. He came up with a list of 404 Metalektro companies located in the southern provinces. This will keep me busy for a while. It's important for me to stay in the same branch to retain retirement benefits. Had spaghetti for supper.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Computer Maintenance

Tuesday, 21-July-2009 - Hellevoetsluis - Took Katherine's pc apart to give it a good cleaning. Put it back together, and didn't have any parts left over. Went shopping in the town center. Had to wait for a cloudburst to pass over. Got a no thank you note back from Vanderlande Industries.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Skating Along Waterways

Monday, 20-July-2009 - Hellevoetsluis - It rained last night. Got up at 0830, and check the weather radar. The forecast looked good. Saw a blue sky with with cummulus clouds parading past--the wind was a steady force 5. Ate breakfast, and then sent a letter off to Vanderlande Industries. After lunch, put my skates on and headed for the dike along the Haringvliet waterway. I followed paved paths and roads to the ferry at Nieuw Beijerland--about 18 km. I had the wind behind me all the way. Had a chat with an 82-year-old lady bicylist while I was looking at a map deciding which route to take home. She also had the wind to contend with to get back home. Took the same way back against the wind. when I got to the Bernisse waterway, I followed it to Zuidland. It was then a straight 10 km shot back to Hellevoetsluis. When I got back, Zoë was waiting for me to tell me that I was late for supper. She usually eats around 1700.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Cats in Control

Sunday, 19-July-2009 - Hellevoetsluis - Taking care of cats is really not that hard. They tell me whenever I need to do something. This is Zoë telling me it's time (for her) to eat.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Vacation in Hellevoetsluis

Saturday, 18-July-2009 - Hellevoetsluis - Get to take care of Katherine and Martin's cats Zoë and Tommy while they are on vacation. Took along skates, bikes, and fishing poles.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Tuesday Skating in Boekel

Tuesday, 14-July-2009 - Boekel - A wonderful summer evening for skating. Fell and scraped some skin off my knee. It comes with the territory.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Nito's Birthday

Sunday, 5-July-2009 - Veghel - Went to two birthday parties today: Veerle's in the afternoon and Nito's in the evening. Here's Nito dancing with a friend.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

4th of July Barbecue

Saturday, 4-July-2009 - Veghel - In Holland, I usually have to work when the 4th of July holiday comes around. Today was Saturday and a good day for a barbecue. Katherine and Martin and Chris and Claudia joined us. Martin did the cooking, and Chris played with Bowie. It was a great day!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Skating Tuesday

Tuesday, 30-June-2009 - Boekel - Rode my bike to Jan's place, and then we took his "ugly duck" (Citroën 2CV) to Boekel. We picked up his sister, Mieke, along the way. Saw his new-born kittens when we got back to his place.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Skating Fun in Sint Oedenrode

Sunday, 28-June-2009 - Sint Oedenrode - Today we had six Fun-on-wheels skaters. Here's Bep during the coffee break. It just so happened that Toon and Henriette also stopped by. On my way back home I saw a Veghel-4-War Child kayak demonstration.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Veghel 4 War Child Volunteers

Saturday, 27-June-2009 - Veghel - Got up at 0530 today to help the other Fun-on-Wheels volunteers set up scaffolding and bleachers for the Holiday on Skates show, a Veghel-4-War Child fundraising event. Also got to see the skaters practice for the show.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Standard Aero Cuts 100 Jobs in Tilburg

Monday, 22-June-2009 - Tilburg/Winnipeg - This is the article I found on page three of this morning's paper: Standard Aero Cuts 100 Jobs in Tilburg. I got the news from my boss when I got back from the air show last Friday. For everyone in Tilburg it was a shot out of the blue. We just let 40 people go in March, and we were planning on being able to keep our head above water until next year. After more than 17 years at Standard Aero, I'll be looking for work soon. Losing my job is a big deal, but there are worse things that happen in one's lifetime, like losing your spouse to cancer. I'm thankful to have my family and my friends. I'm planning on finding a new job with a new mission. I'll let you know how the search goes.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Friday, June 19, 2009

Air Show

Friday, 19-June-2009 - Volkel Air Base - Chris invited me to go to this year's Dutch Air Force Days held at nearby Volkel Air Base. 250,000 visitors were expected for the two-day event. We went by bicycle--a 13 km ride. The weather was excellent and the air show was super--a true display of airmanship and teamwork. It was a great father's day gift. Took about 800 photos. Here's an overview. (53)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Marc's Bar-BQ Volleyball Tradition

Tuesday, 16-June-2009 - Uden - It's a tradition to end the volley season by coming together for a great meal at Marc's Bar-BQ.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Nijnsel Skating

Saturday, 13-June-2009 - Nijnsel - Five Fun-on-wheels skaters today. We skated to Nijnsel for an ice cream cone. Beautiful weather, 18 km.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Skating Weekend in Dronten

Sunday, 7-June-2009 - Dronten - Got back from a three-day Fun-on-Wheels skating weekend. Inge also brought her camera along. Story and photos to follow.

I had the day off Friday to get ready. I first went back to Schijndel to get a better fitting protector set. Rosan drove Ron and me to our meeting point at Willy's house. We headed north to FlevOnice near Biddinghuizen. There, we met the rest of the Fun-onWheels gang and put in four laps on the 5 km track. We had a delicious barbecue meal nearby, before we headed for the Flevo-scouts in Dronten where we spent two nights. (109) (222) (85)

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

New Skates

Wednesday, 3-June-2009 - Schijndel - Joris, salesman at De Wit helped me select my new skates with 90 mm wheels.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Sunday Fun on Wheels

Sunday, 24-May-2009 - Rosmalen/Den Bosch - It was a beautiful sunny 23 Deg C already at 0850 when we left the carpool meeting point. We headed for Rosmalen, the start of today's skate. The route took us in and around Den Bosch. 21 Skaters, good for 25 km. When I got back home, there was plenty of time for some yard work.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Saturday Skating

Saturday, 23-May-2009 - Veghel - There were four Fun-on-Wheels skaters today: Bep, Frans, Tonnie, and me. We went to Keldonk and back.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Katherine and Martin Turn 29

Thursday, 21-May-2009 - Hellevoetsluis - Katherine and Martin celebrated their 29th birthday today.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Volleyball Teammate Wedding

Wednesday, 20-May-2009 - Uden - I picked up Chris and Claudia. We drove to Uden for Marc's Bar-BQ volleyball teammate Peter and Manuela's wedding.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Rainbow Skating

Tuesday, 19-May-2009 - Boekel - I got up at 0500 today, and I was at work at 0730. I wanted to go skating, because it'd been two weeks since the last time I was on skates. I needed to build up my condition. I wasn't certain the weather would cooperate, but there was a chance that the rain showers would skirt around Boekel. I got on my bike at 1815 and headed for Boekel. The cloulds were ominus, but they were also moving rather quickly from south to north. Before I got out of Veghel it started to rain. I stopped to put on my windbreaker. It wasn't water-proof, but it kept me warm. Halfway to Erp, it came down pretty good. I was soaked. Maybe it was dry in Boekel, I thought. I had to find out. At the other side of Erp, it wasn't raining, and the roads were dry. When I got to the Electroworld starting point, it was dry and there were a dozen skaters assembled catching up on the latest news. Jos announce that we'd keep an eye on the weather, and we cut it short if needed so as not to avoud getting wet. We departed at 1900 with twenty skaters in two groups. It turned out to be a great 25 km skate with sunshine and rainbows. I got back home at 2215 tired and with muscles hurting. All I could think of was a warm shower and a good night's rest.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Liberation Day

Tuesday, 5-May-2009 - Veghel - Celebrating freedom, the flag goes to the top.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Remembrance Day

Monday, 4-May-2009 - Veghel - Remembering those fallen. I started the day by lowering the flag to half-mast. As I returned home from work, I saw an F-16 formation fly over Veghel.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Six Bridges and Viaducts Around Eindhoven

Sunday, 3-May-2009 - Eindhoven - It started out cloudy, and there was rain predicted; but we made it back to the starting point just as it started to sprinkle. Seventeen Fun-on-Wheels skaters, escorted by two moped riders--good for 30 km.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Bone and Fossil Collectors

Saturday, 2-May-2009 - Veghel - On my way to help Chris, I saw what looked like a human skull displayed with other bones on the sidewalk along the bike path. When I stopped to take a look, I met these bone and fossil collectors. Patrick was the expert. He was very passionate about his hobby, and he had quite a collection including mammoth (humerus), ancient horse (radius), and a pigs skull--no human bones. This really sparked my interest (see links). At the apartment, it was Thijs's turn. He and Chris were finishing laying the floor. They were ready for moving day.

Friday, May 1, 2009

More Help from Friends

Friday, 1-May-2009 - Veghel - Today, in addition to Roy, Chris and Claudia had help from Hellevoetsluis: Katherine, Martin, and Bowie. The apartment floor looks great!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Queen's Holiday

Thursday, 30-April-2009 - Veghel/Apeldoorn - What started out to be a holiday to be remembered, turned out to become a tragedy we'll never forget.