Yesterday was the first ever Koningsdag. Since they started having a national holiday for the monarch's birthday, there have only been queens. Until this year.
I used to hate the day. Back whe I was daft enough to go into the centre of town. It's a nightmare for someone who hates crowds of people as much as me. Being honest, I'm not that keen on people in general. After we had kids, my opinion changed.
One of the main featues of the day is the vrij markt (free market). Everyone is allowed to do a bit of street trading, wherever they can find a free spot. With one exception: only under-16's are allowed to sell stuff in Vondel Park. Dead handy during my periodic bouts of unemployment, because what they're flogging is often dead cheap kids' clothes. And a couple of years we made a few bob with a stall our own.
No need for that this year, me still being in full-time employment. (I don't mean the beer writing thing. When I started adding up the hours I spend on that, I realised I have two full-time jobs.) But Lexie did set up on the square to sell a few bits and bobs. He made 20-odd euros, which he was pretty pleased with. I only took half as my dad cut.
I used to on the hunt for beer glasses. Ten years ago, I could always find old fluted Belgian Pils glasses or hadled half litre mugs from random German breweries. But the supply had dried up. Now it's mostly dull modern Heineken glasses. So I don't bother looking any more. But Dolores does on her annual search for bargains.
Now it's what I call "drinking glasses" that she finds. Glasses to be used rather than for display. She picked up Duvel tulip and a Corsendonk glass yesterday. Handy back up for the Leffe glass I usually use. That was a Koniginnendag buy, too.
Advice for Pub Staff, 1965, Pt.1 — the Beer - The 1965 book Bar Service offers a snapshot of what was going on in pubs at the time and contains lots of interesting, often amusing, details. It was wri...
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