Today I was all set to blog about paella. Yes, rice and seafood. But then I went shopping.
Every other day of the week shops close at 6pm or earlier. Thursday nights are shopping nights in the Netherlands.
My first horror was trying on a pair of pants and realising that I had to get a bigger size. I couldn't even get the first size over my ass. This is not a situation that any girl wants to find herself in. And it's a situation that happens far too often. Fatassalitis: defn. The swelling of the tush.
On to the (second) shoe store. These are the shoes that I've been eyeing out since my arrival in February. They are imported from Paris. They are soft, they are stylish, they are beautiful. I've tried them on, I've sized them and budgeted. But I did this all months ago. Now I've finally got the paycheck to make my planning worth while.
I walked into the high street shop and smiled at the attendent. He returned the smile and said something to me in Dutch. I gave him my practised speech:
"Ik ben Zuid Afrikaanse, dus moet je langzamer spreken alstublieft..."
"I know that," the 40-year-old Indian salesman replied.
This stumped me. I switched to English in shock.
"Um, I'm sorry... you already know that I'm South African?"
Yes, he remembered me from all those months ago and recognised my accent. Um, okay. I don't remember him. Weird, but okay.
So, how was I enjoying The Hague? Am I working now? General friendly salesman chatting...
Him: So where about do you live?
Me: Um.. The Hague... area... ish.
Him: And did you move here with your children?
Me: Haha... No, no children. Shoes... let's talk shoes! Can I please try these in a size 37?
[Salesman disappears to find my shoes. Another couple walks into the shop. I pray to allah that I've finished with my freak conversation for the day]
Him: Here you go. Having no children makes it so much easier.
Me: Um, yes. No children makes it easier to move countries.
Him: And it makes it easier to ask someone out.
Him: Because then you know they won't need to organise a babysitter.
Me: Hah. Um. Ah. Ik ben samenwonen. I'm living with my boyfriend.
Him: Pity. Is it serious?
Me: Well, I moved countries for him so I'm sticking with that decision. I'm pretty committed. Thanks for asking.
Him: Because I've seen you walking past here a few times and I've always thought how peaceful and calm you looked.
Me: Okay, well... thanks. Stalker. I'll have to think about those shoes... and about ever walking down this street again. Totziens!
I left that shop at a canter.
Pity, I really do like those shoes.