Trip to Europe Day 6 – Asten and Neerkant

Trip to Europe Day 6 – Asten and Neerkant

We stayed in for morning at the house of Frans and Ria. I used the rest time to catch up on my blog writing. We also used the time to present Ria with out little swag of Aussie gifts, as a thank you for her hospitality. The items included: Kooka’s Country Cookies, Mint Slice biscuits, BBQ Shapes, Caramello Koalas, Darrell Lea chocolate, Madura tea bags and Vegemite. The non-food items included an Australian  merino wool scarf, indigenous artwork coasters, a calendar and a tea towel featuring Australian icons.

After lunch we went to meet Tante Nel to go on our sightseeing of where my mother’s family lived.

The first stop was Broekhoven (Bluijssens Broekdijk) – where my grandfather was born.

Tante Nel insisted on getting out of the car for photos – the lady likes having her photo taken.

Then we went to Neerkant to the house my mother was born (Moostdijksebergen). It was also where Nel and her husband Louis lived after they were married.

Neerkant – the house where mum was born

We then went to Neerkant cemetery where Nel visited uncle Louis’ grave. He died in 1977, only in his 50s. Also at the same cemetery there is a memorial for a family from Neerkant who lost their lives in the MH17 air disaster.

The Catholic Church in Neerkant, near the cemetery. Modern, as the previous one was bombed during the war.

After visiting at the cemetery, we went to the Techniek met ’n Ziel – Technology with Soul museum in Neerkant. On display there is thousands of items relating to technology – right up Ulick’s alley. They are presented in domestic settings – so you can see how the technology was used – for example, kitchen, laundry, lounge room.

It was great reminiscing for Nel and Ria (and also Ulick and I).

Everyone Nel bumped into remembered her (she has been living in Asten for 17 years) – so she had a wonderful visit to Neerkant. The museum was set to close at 4.30pm, but we were only just sitting down for the free coffee and waffle (included in the €7 entry). Our host Harrie insisted on continuing the tour after our koffie break – with us leaving about 5.15pm!

Tante Nel wanted to take us to a restaurant for dinner – so we went to the China Garden for a delicious Chinese banquet. There was way too much food, but we tried some of everything.

After dinner, we returned Tante Nel to her flat. Promising to visit for her 100th birthday in four years time.

We got back to Ria’s house and watched some Dutch television. We watched a trash or treasure show called Tussen kunst en kitsch – the concept is the same no matter what language!

Sara Napier

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