A new phenomenon for both the girls this summer is this idea called “summer homework.” When they were given it at the end of the school year, they were both shocked. Well … what can I say? We moved from the US at the right time? Gin was just about to start receiving summer homework when we moved to Holland. And the new school didn’t have summer homework because, surprise, it’s summer! To me, the Dutch are huge travelers; they go everywhere and anywhere their passport is allowed. So changing schools has been an eye opener – there is summer homework and a “proper dress code” at the new school.
Let me digress from this posting for a moment to say that for the most part we don’t have a problem with our daughters’ clothing. And, furthermore, I want to be on the record by saying to Gin, “You may want to re-think wearing that Heineken jumper to school; I am not sure if that is allowed.” (Mind you there was no beer icon on the jumper, just the name “Heineken.”) Gin’s response was simple, “I am of drinking age here.”
Here is where I will refer to as “what my mother would say to me:” “I understand but I better not get a phone call telling me about your inappropriate clothing choice. This is a new school and it’s very conservative.” I received no phone call but Gin was given a very strong reprimand for wearing said Heineken jumper. In our home, this is now referred to as “The Heineken Incident.”
But along with summer homework comes procrastination … and Gin’s way of procrastinating is by saying to me, “Do you want to go for a walk?” Of course, I have learned that this is code for: “Let’s take a walk and swing by Starbucks on the way.” I answered, “Sure, I am up for Starbucks.”
Gin’s favorite Starbucks location, in Basel, is the one that is by the Barfusserplatz and Bankverein tram stops. So we jumped on the tram to her Starbucks, got our coffees, and then wandered back through the medieval part of the city towards the Rhine River.
I haven’t been up this way for a while and I already forgot how much I do like this part of the city; it’s very old and serene. The Basel Munster is up here along with the Natural History Museum of Basel as well. There is a nice courtyard up here that has a few outdoor cafes and nice park benches to just sit and people watch. There is also a nice place up here where people come to play bocce ball as well. But while Gin was wandering one day with friends, she came across this:
She liked the creativity and ingenuity of using Legos to fill a hole. She and I think that the Swiss family who lives here must be really cool to come up with this use of Legos.
The Martini Knitter