Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Prinsjes' (Princes) Moments

I am absent from my Dutch lesson today. I am not feeling well, and I think I'm catching a flu. This time of transition, for sure this flu welcomes me to the Fall season. I have observed that as season changed, there's an accompanying bag of body pains and flu. Well, I'm just finding reason why I feel sick today :-)
Since I stayed home, I have sometime to blog...thanks that I am...:-) I actually like to write about my first enlightening trip during Prinsjesdag last September 19.

The parade of uniformed officers.

Literally, prinsjesdag means: day of the little princes...Ooh! oh! Sounds like enchanting. What is it? I went to Den Haag with my friend Lyn to see it by myself or by ourselves...We took the train which was very full and started musing around. Even inside the train, we're quite sure that those passengers are like us, expectants of the event. I had a hint, most people were older...uuhmm, my mind playing like ping-pong (table tennis)...probably these elders were of the age group of the Queen, maybe the playmates or schoolmates, or the fanatics.

Me and Lyn while waiting...

Actually, I already know what is it :-)Thanks to my teacher of Maatschappij Orientatie (Society Orientation). I also knew some trivia from my partner. But then I would like to see the majesty Queen Beatrix personally...there I went with Netherlands' flag.(HeHeHe! Just for fun, accesorized ourselves and complete the integration :-).

In the Netherlands every third Tuesday in September is known as Prinsjesdag. The day where the Queen rides in a golden carriage (Gouden Koats) from Palace Noordeinde (her working place) to the Knights Hall in the Binnenhof and reads the plans for the coming year to the States-general (Prime Minister) from the throne in the Ridderzaal and the minister of finance proposes the next year's budget to parliament. The government presents its annual budget. Parliament officially starts a new year on Prinsjesdag.

The carriage which was built in Dutch Renaissance style and partly gilded and is decorated with symbolic motifs. The coach is drawn by eight horses.

The Queen sits inside the golden carriage.

And so, at 1pm the parade had started. We stood in a very ideallyc spot at Lange Voorhout just close to the palace where we can see the royal family up-close and straightly without string attached. The streets of The Hague (Den Haag) are lined with loyal crowds, kids, elderlies and tourists, we joined in the throng and warned about the congestion.

We took pictures of course without any batting of eyelash :-)We did waved the Queen. Princes Maxima (wife of Prince Alexander, the succesor son of the queen) is really splendid. The golden coach that worth million euro was right in my nose. It was really delighting. The day was like a victory feast inside the kingdom.( I feel like one of the seven dwarfs...hehehe!).

This is our miniature photo of the Binnenhof. This was taken at the Maduro Dam exposition. This is how it looks during prinsjesdag inside the Binnenhof.

We can't get in inside the Binnenhof. The Binnenhof (inner court), is a collection of buildings in The Hague. It has been the location of meetings of the Staten-Generaal (the Dutch parliament) since 1446, and has been the centre of Dutch politics for centuries. More buildings were constructed around the court, several of which are well known in their own right, such as the Ridderzaal ( Knight Hall), where the queen holds her annual speech. Of course it was only for invited guests and dignitaries.
This day is one of the most traditional events in Dutch politics, involving the royal family, a meeting with all members of both houses of the Staten General, and cabinet in the Ridderzaal. On this occasion males wear their most formal dress, while females try to out do each other with extravagant hats ( Next time we will wear our gorgeous ones :-).

They said that during the end of the parade, the royal family rides back to Noordeinde then waves to the gathered monarchists at the balcony of the palace. We no longer wait for it 'çoz we had a lot to-do's in our list for the day. We can't stand too to smell the free cologne along the street. It was paraded with horses' expensive waste.

Inside are members of the Royal family.

Our stomachs were already complaining that we went to the all-time foreigners' favorite KFC. We found nice sits beside the glass window overlooking the views outside. Stylish lounge and the cosy lobby bar to unwind after a long wait during the parade, were our side dish for a pleasant lunch. Our meal was extra yummy that gives us more energy for our next steps.

Right photo is the approaching golden coach.

Since Binnenhof and parliament buildings are just a stroll away, we can't leave the city without a trip to its shopping arcade. Located in Den Haag at your feet with haut-couture, antiques, culture and numerous fine restaurants in our direct vicinity.
Many boutiques and shopping malls aligning along old streets. In addition, Den Haag offers majestic shopping opportunities in the historic Passage and the 'Haagsche Bluf' shopping center, Bij en Korf while all main department stores are a mere walk away. Uuuhh! We had a long time walking, thanks we had good walking shoes.

Of course, girls's fave again. Shoes, bags, accessories and scents's shops were deliberately scrutinized and visited. We can't finished the whole centrum. Well, we always go to this city actually but we just enjoying it while no man's dragging in our sides :-) (Hi ian, hi wietse:-)

"It was like treating ourselves in the fairyland and as time ticks...then put on our silver shoes to climb back to our castles' towers".

What a prinsjesdag! It was late afternoon then...we just walked to the train station. It was time to go home. We had a good time again. Hahaha! We better left our silver shoes down there in the city, 'çoz we have golds waiting at home :-)... Thanks Lyn for the day.

1 comment:

thess said...

Hello Maria! Looks like you and your friends had fun that day ^-^

I hope you're feeling a bit better now.