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This blog is named after one of my poems. Even thought its not the best of the lot, I just fell in love with those words- The Psyche Unknown...

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Life in Netherlands-Part 3-Hoi Mr.Weather!

Moving towards the north pole didn't come across as a threat when I was basking in the tropical sun.. Little did I know of the effects the temperate zone climate would create on my happy little brain..
Here seasons are so well defined unlike in India. You realise you are breezing through summer or falling through autumn very explicitly.. You see the vivid colors in fall and leaves strewn all over, lest fall on you while your biking on the road unlike in India. Atleast in Bangalore you could hardly make out when the rain sets in and when the heat decides its his turn!. Forget winter,..you have the sun blazing all day long,.
When I first reached here, I was taken aback with the phenomenon of cold winds rushing past your face during summer! I braced my jacket then and always hoped the wind would die down.. The temperature in summers do not cross 20-23 degrees! And that was maximum in winter back home for me..People are so ecstatic about the summers here that everyone is outdoors and dressed as minimum as possible.. I did not understand when I landed here why people were so freaky about summers like they'd never seen sun before..Only when autumn set in I agonised on not enjoying the sun more couple of months back.

Happy , sunny initial days...

This is kinda a fair in the square set up during summer..

Lots of events, outdoor activities and parties are held and people make it a point to attend them. Now that I have witnessed the autumn and winter here I am sure I too will during the summers.. Sunlight is precious here..a rare commodity! I had a very short time with summer here though.. Hope I get to enjoy full summer next time.. I wanna go visit places too as they say summers are the best to tour around Europe..May be I can write more about it then....

Once autumn started setting in, the sun slowly faded away.. so much so that we live here without seeing the sun for weeks! No exaggeration. I never was a big fan of sunny days in India. I loved the showers there, had made it a point to get drenched every single time.. but here, a million efforts to like the rain here went futile.. Rains in India meant hot saucy Chinese Bhel puri at the near by chat shop and a hot cup of granny's coffee. While rains here only bring so much fog, chill, dampness and make you relive your past...its like the dementor effect!! You do not feel like cycling out to get a bite of your favourite hot Vietnamese Loempia even though every cell in your body is begging you to have mercy on them!
Rains in India always had a soothing effect.. it would clear your brain and ease the frown on our face but here it just did the opposite. Cold drops of rain that sting you all over sending shivers in the oddest of places especially if you are not in gear.
Nothing stops life here unlike in India where you get a holiday for heavy rains or where your allowed to skip classes when the weather is too bad.. everything works as normal as ever. When the weather was bad, it meant you were allowed to wake up late.. Still unaccustomed here I have woken up late so many days that there is one course that I have missed altogether because of the early timing. Not that the teacher was great and would have instilled "knowledge" in me if I did attend.
But come on.. you don't wake up when it still looks like morning 4 or 5 just because it is indeed 7 or 8 am! ;D

Trust me when I say the flash has added a lot to these pictures!

(You could also check my Amsterdam pictures)

Even after turning your clocks one hour back to save day light you see "light" only for 5-6 hours a day. Note I am not talking about sunlight.. Its just the left over light reflecting from the sun shining in some other part of the world!
Biking during the rains is anguish in its own right.. A terrible pain in the wrong place.. And as nature always conspires against me, it rained worst when I had to bike the most. Fridays!! darned fridays...I had to bike to and fro to attend classes at different faculties and there I had Mr.R(P)ain Casanova feeling me all over even with my protective gear on..
And don't even get me started about the profound effects the gloom has on your psyche.. I as for one suffered home sickness in varied forms, hallucinations, desired for things/people that never existed in that form, depression, self pity, self hatred so on and so forth..

Just a week back when the sun showed up all of a sudden full and bright with no clouds along the horizon, I was so sure I was still asleep. I had only expected it to the gloom to grow worse for winters. But lo! I was in for a surprise...I opened the door and the sun was standing right outside my door with a mischievous grin something that said- "You there lassy.. did ya miss me??" Yes Yes Yes!! Only the light years stopped me from kissing the sun! ;) I stood outside for half hour doing nothing but soaking in all the vitamin D that I possibly could..

See... The sun in my room! :):):) Yeah I have kinda grown romantic about the sunlight...;)

Couple of days, it started getting colder.. The small canals around started freezing and soon even before we realised it, it started snowing. All my neighbours here and me celebrated the first snowfall in Delft with so much enthu in the middle of the night..It was F.U.N. period.
I love the snow..Absolutely! After a all night session of playing in the snow, building a snow man the next night, and walking quite a distance in the snow at around -10 degrees; I am satiated.. :) A peculiar oxymoron in this weather is that its so damn bright when it is snowing. The sun is out in all splendour and yet it shows minus degrees on the temperature scale. Its comparatively less windy too.. I really like it.. Its all white around you and you have the sun adding on to the brightness too...

I fulfilled mychildhood dream of building a snow man too along with my Dutch friend Anouk.. Building snow man is quite a task. Not as easy as I thought. I suffered from a muscle pull in the night and a bad backache the next day.. But it was worth it all. I finally built a snow man and yeah he looked good for a rookie! ;)

Today there is heavy snow fall and its few inches deep on the ground. Its utterly fantastic to see this color waking you up.

Outside my doorstep.

View from my window that I woke up to in the morning today.

And the cycles covered in the snow are so beautiful. Its quite a task to recognise your bike amidst those many, all covered by the white fairy..:)

To avoid this confusion and to de-freeze my cycle locks , I have had to accommodate my bike as a guest for few days in my room! sigh...
But I am perfectly loving this weather..Though it requires layers of clothing and yet sometimes gives you the chills, its much better than the rains.
Waiting for the canals to freeze a little more so that I can go walking/skating over them!

That's the effect when you throw a snowball on the frozen canal.. Isn't it sort of spectacular as though shot in split second of a blast?? Its actually taken almost a minute after the snowball was dropped on the ice!

Spring is yet to come..but when it does, I'll be all ready to let you know about the beauty of Europe!
As of now, I'm getting a call for a snow fight.. ;)
Tot ziens!


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