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Month: July 2017

Get my lazy ass out of my chair..

Get my lazy ass out of my chair..

I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride my bike
I want to ride my bicycle
I want to ride it where I like
– Bicycle race, Queen –

Get my lazy ass out of my chair…
When I started writing this blog, I told you there were a view things I had to do and one of them was: get my lazy ass out of my chair.
Well I did. It was about 9 weeks ago when I filled out an application form on the internet for the local fitness center. Soon after I pushed the send button, I received a call and we made an appointment, and before I knew it I was out of my lazy chair.
Work had controlled my personal life for so many years that I completely neglected my own body and mind. I am 51 years old and way to heavy. I’m not going to tell you my weight because I’m too ashamed to tell you, but you have to believe me for somebody who always has been keen on sport (I played hockey and handball, did a lot of swimming and running, did some horse riding, fitness and survival ): it’s far too much.
Anyway 9 weeks ago I decided that it was enough. I couldn’t go on like this and I started exercising at the local fitness center. They put me on a program named: the Milon Circle. Every Tuesday and Friday morning I take my mountain bike and ride to Leisure World . I do my exercises and go back home. I like to go as early as possible, at a time when there are not a lot of other people. I made a spotify list; it motivates me, listening to music and do my exercises. It’s a way of shutting down the world around me and to concentrate on the exercises.
In the program I follow there is this cross trainer. I have to do this one twice (4 minutes each time) and I hate it. I wish I could move the time forward with my eyes but that doesn’t work. 4 Minutes are 4 minutes and they won’t go any faster, and even if I go faster it doesn’t make any difference. So I decided I had to have some music to keep me going. I chose:Tsunami from Radio Edit. The rhythm of the music keeps me going. I also have to ride on a bike, 4 minutes, twice. But riding a bike is no punishment, it’s what I like to do. I like listening to Enrique Iglesias/Pitbull (I like how it feels) or Bruno Mars (That’s what I like) and before I know it, 4 minutes are over. But riding a bike in a fitness center is not as much fun as riding on my mountain bike outside.

This morning my love and I took our mountain bikes and made a lovely ride through Flevoland. For those who don’t know Flevoland: it’s a very flat region in the center of The Netherlands. The land was drained in 1957 and the place I live in arose in 1972. I live beneath sea level.
If you life in a country like Germany, France, England, Ireland or Scotland you cannot imagine how flat Flevoland is. You probably start laughing when I talk about hills or lakes. I get it, I would laugh too when I think of all the beautiful mountains, hills and lakes in your countries.
Anyway we went on our mountain bikes. It was a sunny day and at our first stop we drank a nice cup of coffee and ate a slice of apple pie with whipped cream. This is a good biking habit in the Netherlands. You take a break on your biking tour and you go for coffee and a slice of apple pie with whipped cream. It’s a treat you give to yourself because you think you earned it after hard work! I know it’s not good for my diet but I’m sorry, old habits are hard to break.
As we went further we left the main biking path and went through the forest. It’s nice and quiet there. For on the main biking path it can be very busy on a summer’s  day.
There might be nine million bicycles in Beijing but there are 22 million bicycles in The Netherlands. That’s a fact. That means that every person in the Netherlands has at least one bike and most of them have two. That’s also true, I have two bikes. I have a regular bike to go to my work, do shopping and go to the local wine bar on a Friday night, and I have my mountain bike.
We went through the forest and for those who know my love, also know he’s never staying on the regular paths. No, my love always finds another path and says; let’s see where this one leads us…
That’s the moment I should be alert, and believe me I am, but still, every time I do follow him and every time I think; the next time….. For I do know that when I follow it’s not going to be easy. We will be riding on paths of sand, through the grass, water and the mud. Over tree stumps and trying to avoid the reed on the side. Well today was no exception. But it was lovely doing it after a long time. I really missed it.
Our second stop was at the lake called; Veluwemeer. We sat on the terrace and ordered a nice lunch.
I ordered a healthy salad after my not so very healthy apple pie. I did this biking for a greater cause and that wouldn’t work if I ate all those not so healthy stuff on the other side. I would never lose any weight by eating apple pie every time.
While we were eating, a huge ship was sailing by. As a matter of fact it didn’t sail by itself. The ship was towed by several little boats. The ship looked a lot like the Ark of Noah. Later I heard people saying It was the Ark of Noah. In fact it was a floating museum. On the boat are all kind of figures from the bible telling their stories.
After lunch we went for the last part of the route, and when we arrived home we biked 47km (about 30 miles) today.
As for today I think I deserve to lay down on my lazy ass for a little while………

Dear Mr. Martin (Coldplay)

Dear Mr. Martin (Coldplay)

The Axis of Awesome
It’s been a while back since I first heard the song: Four Chords by a band called The Axis of Awesome. I had never heard of them before.
The Axis of Awesome is an Australian band. After they won a Moosehead Award with their show: The Axis of Awesome Comeback Spectacular, they performed their show at Edinburgh Fringe (2008) . It was after this show that the BBC Radio1 broadcasted the song: Four Chords.
Four Chords contains 36 pop songs and all these songs are played with only four chords. Isn’t that amazing!
So I took 25 songs from my favorite band Coldplay. Put parts of the lyrics of their songs together and wrote a letter to you Mr. Martin. Sometimes I used several parts of the lyrics and sometimes only one phrase. I hope you will not take this letter too serious.
Although the letter starts with dear Mr. Martin, it’s not only for you but for the other members of the band as well.
Enjoy reading it!

Dear Mr. Martin,
I turn the music up. I got my records on. I shut the world outside until the lights come on. Maybe the streets alight, maybe the trees are gone. I feel my heart start beating to my favorite song.
Call it magic, call it true. I think I landed in a world I hadn’t seen. When I’m feeling ordinary. When I don’t know what I mean. I just got lost. I used to rule the world. Seas would rise when I gave the word.
When I was just a girl, I expected the world. But it flew away from my reach so I ran away in my sleep and dreamed of Paradise. Hear Jerusalem bells a-ringing. Roman cavalry choirs are singing. Dreaming of the Osaka sun. Dreaming of when the morning comes. Everything I want is a dream away. That’s what you told me. You can see the change you want to be what you want to be.
I’ve been reading books of old, the legend and the myths. Achilles and his gold, Hercules and his gifts. Spiderman’s control and Batman with his fists. And clearly I don’t see myself upon that list.
When you try your best, but you don’t succeed. When you get what you want, but not what you need. When you feel so tired, but you can’t sleep. Stuck in reverse. In my place where lines I couldn’t change. One minute I held the key. Next the walls were closed on me. And I discovered that my castles stands upon pillars of salt and pillars of sand.
And you don’t know where you’re going, and you wanna talk. And you feel like you’re going where you‘ve been before. You tell anyone who’ll listen but you feel ignored. Nothing is really making any sense at all.
Where do we go nobody knows. Where do we go to draw the line? I don’t care, go on and tear me apart. I don’t care if you do. Running in circles. Coming up tails. Heads on a science part. Fish fell out of water. Birds stuck on the ground. Chaos giving orders. Everything is upside down. Confusion never stops.
If we’ve only got this life. How come people suffer? How come people part? How come people struggle? How come people break your heart? Am I part of the cure? Or am I part of the disease? They say people come, they say people go.
My father said never give up. If you never try, then you’ll never know. So turn your magic on. Everything you want’s a dream away. And we are legends every day. That’s what you told me. Under this pressure, under this weight, we are diamonds.
I’m gonna get it together right now. I’m gonna get it together somehow. I’m gonna get it together and flower. I’m gonna get it together, I know.
Now I feel my heart beating. I feel my heart underneath my skin. Lights will guide me home, and ignite my bones, and you will try to fix me. You make me feel like I’m alive again.
Nobody said it would be easy. Nobody ever said it would be this hard. But time is on our side . Not pushing you down and all around. It’s no cause for concern.
I’m so scared about the future and I wanna talk to you. Look at the stars. Look how they shine for you and everything you do. God gave you style and gave you grace. God put a smile upon your face. Honey you are a rock upon which I stand. I come here to talk. I hope you understand.
So I say drink from me. Life is a drink and love’s a drug. I’m feeling drunk and high.
Viva la Vida…….

With love

My Peak Challenge

My Peak Challenge

And you get a head
A head full of dreams
You can see the change you want to
Be what you want to be

A head full of dreams, Coldplay

My Peak Challenge
Last week I presented to you my new website; and I explained to you why I did it and what I wanted to do with it.
But before the site was presented to you I had a challenge. A big challenge; I had to do something I had never done before. Building a website and writing my stories. I can tell you that’s a BIG challenge.
Finding a name for it and finding a webhosting company to host me wasn’t the hardest part. Raoul Werger, owner of Oxilion, a big webhosting company in the Netherlands, offered to help me out. Thank you Raoul, for supporting me!
But being honest to myself and without shame I have to admit if it wasn’t for the global community; My Peak Challenge, I would probably never have started this in the first place.
And if I had not seen Outlander, I would never have googled on the cast of this wonderful series; Sam Heughan, Caitriona Balfe, Tobias Menzies, Graham McTavish, Duncan Lacroix, Steven Cree, Scott Kyle and all the other fine actors and actresses.
One thing led to another and through Sam Heughan I came to the website called; My Peak Challenge, and when I read the website I found My Peak Challenge.

‘A Global Community rooted in the belief that we can all effect positive change in our lives while helping others’.

I have always been raised in the belief that you have to help each other, and that’s exactly what I saw in your global community Mr. Heughan.
It was what I needed. The belief that I could make a positive change and still be helpful to others.
My Peak Challenge is about reaching out of your comfort zone, and find something that you don’t think you could do. Make it a challenge and achieve it.
And that’s exactly what inspired me to make my own website; and start a weblog. I still don’t know if I can do it but I don’t know if I haven’t tried it. Or like my father used to say: ‘You have to test everything and hold on to everything that’s good’.
I made a list of the things I wanted to achieve and I started.

Building the website
To be honest it took me quite a while to build the website. What do I want to post? I wrote some of the parts over and over again. Thought it was never good enough. If I was going to do this the whole world could read what I always kept to myself. It would make me vulnerable. But on the other hand it would make me stronger, much stronger. It would show that I would no longer be afraid of what others might think of me.
I posted pictures. Some of them I had to remove after posting because they were not sharp enough. Then I found this picture of Scotland. I made it in 2009 when I visited Glasgow. I put it in the header image and until a week ago I thought it was the picture to be. But deep down inside of me there was a little voice that told me there had to be something better.
You see it is a wonderful picture and I have good memories about it but it is also a dark picture. The picture could make you feel sad and my challenge was to celebrate love and life something I didn’t implicate with this picture.
Somewhere in my diary I even wrote; ‘I’m not a depressed middle aged women…Me always trying to be the positive one.. ‘
But until a week ago I couldn’t find me another header image, so I let it be.

The header image
While I sat outside on the terrace with my laptop, my love and the children were playing around with a camera. All kind of silly pictures were taking until my daughter said: ‘Mom how long will you go on before I can use the laptop?’
I told her that I needed a little while longer and then it was hers. I thought she had to finish something for school.
‘Will you not shut it down, I want to try something.’
I finished what I was doing and when I came back outside some time later, she had made a scene on the table with all kind of things I use for writing.
Suddenly I knew what she was doing, she was making me the picture I was looking for in my header image. It represented all of me.
At that moment all the pieces fell into its place and was born.
That evening I asked two people to look at it and tell me honestly if it was worth publishing.
When I got their answers it made me cry. I had done something I never thought I could do.
I challenged myself and I did well. My Peak Challenge was accomplished. was born and I DID IT.
There’s only one small thing left for me to do and that is to join My Peak Challenge. My request is on its way, My Peak Challenge