The other day regular commenter Hans begged me to write something along the lines of “cars or bikes or boats or guns or flat earth……anything except women.”
In the move to The Netherlands I sold my car and my bike, (great sadness), and the only thing I know about guns is that I know nothing about guns, (although I plan to rectify this in the future).
So flat earth it will have to be.
This is more apt than it looks, as the good wife and I are hunting for a property to purchase over here, and as no doubt many of you know, The Netherlands is flatter than a lesbian’s chest.
The property planning purchase has been ongoing for a few months now, and we have inspected quite a number of abodes. When we began the search we were just looking for a house, a place to live if you will. My own requirements were quite basic – a wood burning fire or stove as a necessity and the garden facing to the South. The good wife doesn’t want to look out the window and see acres of parked cars and houses, which is rather difficult in this part of the world.
Thus over these few months our parameters have shifted somewhat. First we had to work out in which region of Holland we wanted to live. The North of the country is protestant, so they’re pretty uptight. The middle of the country is known as the Randstad or ‘green heart’. This area is characterized by the people being a little obsessed with making money.
The South is the Catholic area and this is a little more laid back. Last Saturday we took a day trip to the city of Den Bosch in the North Brabant region of the South. The city was gorgeous, overflowing with bars, restaurants, and cafes, with hordes of people relaxing and strolling around in the autumn sunshine. It was notably more laid back than other areas we have seen thus far.
So South Holland it is, most probably the region of North Brabant. But the area in which we are looking is not the only major change to our list of requirements. Now we are after a small landholding as well, around 4 to 5 acres. The plan is to build up a farming sideline to supplement our regular income. It’s also something that I have wanted to do ever since I lived in a small village in the Italian Alps as I enjoy the rhythms of rural life. However, the nice thing here in Holland is that everything is very close, so you can have the rural life but easily pop into the larger towns and cities as well.
At this stage we’re thinking of Berkshire pigs, an English breed that has marvelous fat concentrations which make it ideally suited to the noble art of barbequing. In my time in the alps I got to help the neighbors butcher their yearly pig a few times, and I got a good understanding of how they make local delicacies such as speck and other cured meats. The idea is to have the pigs on pasture.
Of course this is just a plan at this stage and plans have a good habit of changing and evolving which I have no doubt that this will too. But this could be a nice topic for a good discussion that has nothing to do with the wymens, or the politics, or the usual downfall of western civilization, blah blah blah. So if you know anything about small scale farming, let me know your thoughts. And if you know nothing at all, let me know your thoughts too.
If instead I get a wall of silence then the future will be clear: only posts about the wymens from now on.