Wednesday, 30 April 2008


A quick break from my endless holiday tales. Today is Koninginnendag (Queen's Day) which means I get a day off. Not that sort of queen. Queen Beatrix. It's her official birthday.

The main feature of the day is the "vrijmarkt" ("free market"). Everyone is allowed to sell their old junk on the street. Amsterdam is transformed into one giant flea market. We took advantage to unload some of the kid's old stuff in Vondel Park. We earned a massive €7.50. That would last me - oh - 5 minutes in the pub.

"What's this got to do with beer?" Good question. But I'm prepared for it. Do you think I start writing without knowing where I'm going? I do quite often, but not in this case. I only have one thing on my mind at vrijmarkt time: beer glasses. Like I said before, people sell off the stuff that's cluttering up the house. Beer glasses fall into this category. Often they're just the free glasses given away in packs of beer. But sometimes they're ones nicked from a pub while on holiday. That's when it gets interesting.

I've found some dead cushty stuff in years past. Really nice branded Weizen glasses for 25 cents. Pub pils tumblers from defunct Belgian breweries.

This year is just OK. Just a couple of Austrian jugs (from a small, independent brewery), a Leeuw glass and a decanter. Though I need a glass decanter. For pouring out my Whitbread beers, seeing as I don't drink out of a 75cl glass. Together they cost less than the €7.50 we took for selling our crap.

Free glasses for dad. Brilliant. If only every day were like this.

You can read Lexie's version of the day here.


Alan said...

All my favorite Queens had a period of exile in Canada.

Anonymous said...

the huber braeu glass could just about do for a Gose glass by the looks, though no doubt you have one of those too?

hmm. nicking or buying (if i am not so sozzled) glasses from pubs on holiday. one of my favourite pastimes. indulged in it last weekend even. you'd think you'd grow out of it at age 35.
Wellington, NZ

Magnus said...

I love that "Op = Op Shop" sign. How typically Dutch.

Ron Pattinson said...

Anonymous, it does look like a Gose glass. No, I don't already have one.

Magnus, op = op and the Beer slagerij sign.

Mike said...

Remind me to come to your neighbourhood next year. All I managed to find was a 50cl Lech glass. But, there were enough Heineken and Amstel glasses around here to open a new pub!

Ron Pattinson said...

Mike, I do live in classy neighbourhood.

Dolores found the best glasses - the Huber ones. I have duplicates of each - the mug and the test tube - if you're interested. Just 2 euros each.

Boak said...

Charity shops in the UK perform a similar function - we've picked up some fabulous specimens.

We used to nick them from pubs but got a pang of conscience about it a few years back. But if you ask to buy a glass, they often let you have one anyway.