After a tearful goodbye from my mom, and a tearful walk through security, and a pretty long tearful walk through the terminal to my gate, which was at the very end, i finally find a seat in a corner in the back. I finally can stop sniffling and my mom calls me, which starts everything again (thanks mom haha). But i quickly get ahold of myself this time, and it was time for me to start boarding.
I get to my row. Its only two seats long and i have the window seat. After the plane finally took off, i tried to fall asleep, but it was pretty loud and uncomfortable, especially because the seats did not go back. And the TV screens were only in the middle of the plane, so it was hard to see. The flight attendants handed everyone this little bag and it contained a little toothbrush and toothpaste, ear plugs, a pair of socks, and a thing to cover your eyes (can't remember what its called). The stuff had a weird smell of it, though. A little later, they handed out dinner. I got pasta with some vegetables, a little little bit of tomato sauce, and cheese, a roll, a small peice of cheese cake, and some sort of coleslaw. It was filling, but definately not the best meal. During dinner, i talked to the guy next to me. I found out that he is studying abroad in Berlin for a semester and i told him im staying in the Netherlands. Then he told me about when he went to Amsterdam and what it was like. Then we talked about colleges. He was nice, and im glad i didnt get put next to some weirdo. We'll see about the way back. For the rest of the plane ride, i attempted to sleep. Oh and on the TV screens, it would show where you were flying over, the speed of the plane, how high we were from the ground, and the temperature outside. And the flight attendents spoke German to you until you said something in English. I flew over the northern part of the US and then into Canada, over the bottom of Iceland, over England, and Rotterdam, and then we finally landed! The total trip was just about 11 hours.
I leave the plane and start walking, following everyone who was on my plane. Luckily, there were English under the German signs. I go through customs, and then get to the baggage claim. The same four bags went around for about ten minutes, then more bags finally started to come. Mine was one of the first. I grab it, thanfullybeing able to pick it up because its pretty heavy, and then try to pull the handle out...it wouldn't budge. So i awkwardly held the handle and rolled it, trying not to have it my heels. I walk through the doors and see Ninon, holding a beautiful flower, and her Mom with their big smiles.
We finally make it home and the front of the house is decorated for me. I looved it! After i got settled in, Ninons Grandma and cousin came and i got to meet them. And after that, i took a very nice long nap. Later that night, some of Ninon's friends came over. The girls gave me this package of some Dutch food: Some chips, a little bottle of wine, stroopwaffles (delicious cookies) and gum. And then a guy named, Rutger, gave me a HUGE Dutch flag. They are soo nice and funny, and i loved the gifts.
On friday morning, I went with Ninon and her mom to the aunts house to get a bike for me. They brought out the bike and started fixing it up for me, then brought it out to the front for me to test ride...it was so embarrasing. I just met these people and then they are all going to watch me test ride a bike, and on top of it, I couldn't really ride it or stop it. It was later decided that i wasn't going to ride it. In the afternoon, Ninon and I went to her friend, Bram's house. Ninon rode her bike, and i sat on the back. His house was huge! He had a big lawn, a pool, a trampoline, and a tree house. It was very nice. It was fun, although i can't really talk or understand anyone. After that, Ninon and I babysat her little cousins Finn and Hailey.
The next day, the whole family and I went to a birthday party for Ninon's cousin, who was turning 16. That's where i met the whole family, and i felt really awkward at first, but then started feeling more and more comfortable.
On Sunday, the whole family and I went up to Northern Holland to vist a fortress called Bourtange. On the way there, we stopped at this windmill to eat. It was soo nice, and we had some visitors, Chickens! They were hilarious. Then Erno, Ninon's dad, read some of the Bible. Overall, a great little time. After that, we were back on the road. The fortress was SO cool. When we first got there, they were celebrating a 100 year old womans birthday. They exploded something out of the cannon of her, it was extremely loud. Then we explored. We went to a museum, a Jewish Synagoge, and they showed a little film in English! (One of the only things in English) They also had a little play in the center of the town with people dressed up like they would if they lived in the fortress. Again, it was in Dutch. But before we saw the play, we were walking and saw the jester. He was soo funny. After i took a picture of him, he ran up to me and i cowered back laughing because i had no idea what he was going to do and shocked that he did that, then he went after Sheren, Ninon's younger sister, and Ninon. Sheren screamed and ran away from him, while Ninon just stood there laughing. Then we went to the center of the fortress and sat down at a table. After the play was done, the jester came over to us and hugged Sheren, and of course she was freaking out. Don't worry, I got pictures. He sat and talked with us for a long time. He eventually found out i was from America, and he spoke English for a little while, which is always nice. Then we found out that we were the same age, and he was my long lost Dutch brother because we had the same hair color. Another cool thing is that i got to get to know Sheren a little bit more, which was very nice! After we got back from that, we went straight to a family bbq at the grandparents house, and then after that, Ninon and I met some of her girlfriends, and we hung out with them for a little bit.
Today, Ninon, her mom, and I went to a market in another town for the morning. It was nice, but it was more for Ninon and her mom because it had a lot of fabrics, which were nice, of course, but not something im as interested in as they are. However, as we were walking to the market, i was told that the town we were in was very religiously strict, and you can usually tell who they are by the way they are dressed. So as we walked around, I picked out the women who looked like that. Just a little entertainment for me haha. After we got home, i took a nice long nap, and now i am writing this.
Here is a couple of things that i find funny here. First of all, you almost always have to pay to go to the bathroom here. So this would be an expensive place to live if you had blatter control problems. And you can ask random strangers for ibuprophen and they will give it to you. That's all i can remember right now, but im sure im forgetting stuff. Overall, im having a great time! I'll upload some pictures on facebook soon! Bye!