Friday, December 29, 2006

One, Two, Three Four.. Three Four..

Three Four, 34; my official age starting yesterday (28 Dec). In the morning, when I was still in bed, the kids came to me, each with a package in his and her hands. Dhanu said, "I know it's your birthday!", while Lindri just said, "Presents!". These are pre-presents, according to Syb, because more will come much later (he's still ordering them.. heehee).
Dhanu handed over the present from Syb: a live show DVD of Jonathan Richman. Yay! We went to his show in Amsterdam a couple of years ago and I enjoyed it very much; an honest, pleasant and funny performance. The rest are presents from my mother-in-law: complete DVDs of British comedy series: Fawlty Towers, Yes Minister and (the Best of) Dad's Army. All my favourites!

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There was no cake and no candles to blow, for I am usually the one who go out and prepare them. Sybrand is already so busy packing (and a bit ill as well) so he couldn't prepare those for me, but he did a lot already. In the mid-day I took Lindri to the station to meet Anin; we're going to have a girls' day out! It was exactly lunch time so we walked rightaway to Zeedijk, dropping by New King for some sui kiau (shrimp dumpling) soup, shrimp-sesame toast, kangkung with beef and stuffed aubergine in black bean sauce.

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New King
Zeedijk 115-117
Tel: +31 (20) 6252180

open Mon-Sun 11.30 to 24.00

Fed, warmed and happy, we moved on to the direction of Nieuwmarkt. We entered Henk comics shop; I wanted to see if they have the 10th (and the final!) volume of Samurai Executioner series, but they didn't. The shop was full of boxes to be unpacked, the contents registered and displayed, so we couldn't spend too much time in there (which was not easy, because everytime I'm there I always want to linger and devour all the action figures over there with my eyes!).
Passing De Waag, we walked straight down the street of Kloveniersburgwal; the canal on our left handside. It wasn't raining and, although cloudy, the temperature was not too cold. Lindri walked along happily and even laughed out loud whenever I and Anin, who held her hands, lifted her to 'fly' at every intersection.

Next stop: the Book Exchange, shop specializing in used English books. This place has been my favourite second-hand bookshop since I first set my foot in, nearly 8 years ago. Anin was looking for some light reading materials to pass the New Year's Eve, so I showed her the novels section. I and Lindri browsed the children's book and comics section (where Lindri found a Noddy book and I Mad's Dave Berg Looks at Modern Thinking and a 1982 edition of Totto-Chan) and the cookbook section (where I found a Bourdain book: A Cook's Tour). I couldn't spend too much time in the basement (sections of sociology, fantasy, biography, gender studies, etc.) because Lindri was getting impatient. Anin found 2 books for herself, and we paid on our way out. Those books I and Lindri picked? Less than 15 Euros for the whole lot! Not bad at all..

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the Book Exchange

Kloveniersburgwal 58

1012 CX Amsterdam

Tel: +31 (20) 6266266


Mon-Sat 10.00-18.00

Sun 11.30-16.00

In one of the facades of University of Amsterdam complex, a couple of book kiosks were also opened for business. "Cookbooks and Dutch-Indies", was written on a board, directing us to their spots. Interesting, old and new cookbooks were displayed on wooden tables. I can't help noticing a hardback Larousse Gastronomique, still in its plastic wrappers, priced at 70 Euro (so it's actually not much cheaper here compared to, for example, the New English Bookshop). Another big table displayed various books from the Dutch-Indies era: fictions, picture books, children's books, recipes, etc. Some were priced as antiques, reaching up to hundreds of Euros. I almost bought a picture book about plantations in the Dutch-Indies, with complete photos, priced at about 16 Euro, but I recalled my mother has one already (with incomplete photos, bought at De Slegte). This one was really a good copy, I was really tempted - but in the end I decided not to buy it. Well, it was a pleasant 'window-shopping'..

On to the direction of Muntplein, passing the De l'Europe hotel. We aimed to go to the American Book Center (ABC), which just moved to its new location at the Spui. Here Lindri started getting tired so I carried her along Kalverstraat. Before turning left to Spui, we stopped by the windows of Waterstones to feast our eyes on the new books that were sold on bargain prices. Too bad we were just from the 2nd-hand shop, so the prices are incomparable. On to the ABC!

The new shop of ABC used to be a showroom for piano (and maybe some other musical instruments); which never seemed to be inhabited. It is totally different now; the interior - dominated by wooden elements - gives a warm atmosphere, but not dull, because the design is quite dynamic. The ground floor (magazines, best sellers, etc.) was full of people, so we went to the first floor (travels, children's, comedy, comics, etc.) where we spent most of our time. I quickly looked for the Samurai Executioner #10 and I got it! *does Snoopy dance* I also looked for Neil Gaiman's Fragile Things, which was easy to find. There it was, a hardback with beautiful semi-transparant, thin cover, priced at about 26 Euro. Hmph.. I'd better wait for a paperback version. All sections were full of people and it wasn't pleasant anymore for Lindri who was already tired. I'll surely be back once more to explore the whole shop some other day, without any toddler. I took Lindri to the children's section, where we could browse many books. She liked that. After reading two books with Lindri, I paid my purchase and we left the shop. Lindri was 'alive' again upon hearing our next plan: get some ice-cream!

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American Book Center

Spui 12

Tel: +31 (20) 6252180

Mon-Sat: 10.00 - 20.00 (Thu until 21.00)

Sun: 11.00 - 18.30

Too bad the Tokyo Cafe at the Spui is closed until January, so we couldn't get our green tea or kidney beans ice cream. We walked to Kalvertoren Shopping Center, our minds set to the small Häagen-Dazs cafe that is located at the Singel part of the shopping center. As expected, the seats inside were all occupied. Fortunately, after ordering, we could sit on one of the two small tables outside the cafe, where we felt like sitting in the middle of the streams of shoppers and passers-by. I had a portion of chocolate and vanilla caramel brownie ice cream with warm brownie pieces, chocolate sauce and almond slices; Anin a seasonal fig ice cream with chocolate sauce, shortbread and crushed mixed nuts. I was about to share my brownies ice cream with Lindri but she refused upon the dark, hideous sight of the portion, so I ordered one scoop of strawberry cheesecake ice cream for her. She's quite content with it.

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Singel 457
1012WP Amsterdam

Once the ice cream was finished, we continued walking to the tram stop in front of V&D and took a number 16 to Heinekenplein. We reached home at about 15:45, where we could rest and chat, while Syb and Dhanu went to the doctor (their appointment was at 16:00). At about 17:00 Syb and Dhanu came back, bringing the doctor's recipes for their medications. I and Anin departed again, this time to our local pharmacy as the main direction.

It was already dark outside, but not colder. We walked through Albert Cuyp marketplace, which surprisingly was still open (perhaps because it's Thursday, koopavond, where stores are opened until around 20:00). We turned left at the intersection with Ferdinand Bolstraat, passing by a road that used to have tram rails (but not anymore since the construction of an extended subway tunnel) and now has become a pedestrian and cycling area. I was the last customer at the pharmacy; they were preparing to close down the shop when we were about to leave. We walked up the Ferdinand Bolstraat again to the direction of Heinekenplein, stopping by Sari Citra for some dinner (it's my birthday, I don't have to cook.. heehee). Just some chicken sate, fried Javanese noodles and some mixed veggies (broccoli, cauliflower and carrot) were enough for Syb and the kids, for I was still full from all the daytime eating. Anin chose an ote-ote for her trip back to Delft. We said bye near the tramstop of Heinekenplein (thanks for the fun day, Anin!), then I went home to feed my familiy. Later that night, when the kids were already in bed, we enjoyed one of my birthday presents: the Jonathan Richman liveshow! 19 songs, typical Richman, plus interviews. Very pleasant, and even funny.

I thank you all for the greetings I received through email, e-cards, Multiply and phone calls. Those really helped me get the 'birthday' feeling, which I was lack of due to the many celebrations that just happened (Sinterklaas, Dhanu's birthday and Christmas) and stuff that still should happen (packing and moving business, public defence preparations and such). It was one of my most modest but memorable birthdays! :D


  1. Women blossom when they are thirty-four
    and that takes six whole years.
    After that, life just starts.....

    (kucing, when she hit 30)

    Happy blossoming, Esduren!

  2. kok hanya foto-foto? coretannya manna...

    btw selamat hari jadi

  3. aahh...heppy birthday yah..padet juga yah aktifitas nya ;D
    moga selalu aktif dan enjoy yah!



  5. met ulang tahun ya, mbak.. moga2 ntar ada penerbit yang tertarik menerbitkan coretan2nya sebagai kado b'day.. amin..

  6. gefeliciteerd voor uw verjaardag...
    I wish you a meaningful birthday, may your forthcoming year be blessed with so much love and real happiness... May each step of your future life be filled with meaningful experiences, valuable stories of life and lead you closer to what you always want your life to be...

  7. Tita, semua apa yang lo lakukan di hari ultah lo ini, apa gak bikin lo kangen someday sama Amsterdam? :)

  8. Kalau lo ada kesempatan mampir ke Le Havre, gua tau mau ngajakin lo kemana. :)
    Ada toko buku yg namanya La Galerne, luaaaaaaaaaaas banget dan chic! Di dalamnya banyak sofa2 besar yang bisa didudukin sambil baca komik kesukaan lo (sayang mayoritas in French, hihihihihihi). Udah gitu kalau haus atau lapar, di tengah2 toko buku ini ada cafe yang juga jual sandwich2 yang cukup enak. Yum!
    Wah, kalau mampir kesini pasti lupa waktu deh! :)

  9. Lha justru :D

    I know this was my last birthday in Amsterdam, until who knows when I will have it here again. Therefore it was worth spending exploring my favourite spots in the city - although I could get through only half of them! Seize the moment, enjoy the present, for the sake of sweet memories in the future :)

  10. willy, ganes, iis, nat - makasih yaa! wish you a fun closing of the year!

  11. amin.. makasih.. terbitan2 kemaren dan yang akan datang sudah kuanggap sebagai kado besar, meskipun cuma 1-2 gambar di tiap2 buku. semoga besok2 bisa lebih banyak lagi :D

  12. huehuehue nanti menyusul.. baru sempet nyabut2 foto2 doang, oret2an masih ngantri. makasih yaa

  13. Ini ya Pet? Mauuu.. tapi kudu belajar bahasa Perancis dulu kali ya biar bisa menikmati juga baca2nya.. hehe..

    La Galerne est une librairie généraliste indépendante ouverte sur la place du Havre depuis le début des années 80. Elle dispose de 100000 volumes en romans, livres d'art, bandes dessinées, revues etc. Mais La Galerne est aussi un lieu d'expositions variées, de rencontres avec de nombreux auteurs et d'animations diverses culturelles toutes les semaines.

  14. Gile bok, lo lebih tau dari gua tentang la galerne, hehehehehhehehehe. Hidup google! HIhihihihihihihihi....

  15. Girls' day out. He..he.... karena boys nya pada sakit yah? :(. Keliatan banget kalo New King tuh gak pernah terlewat, lengkap dengan menu2 yg gak ganti2 :p. Met Ultah lagi Tita >:D<

  16. Haha jelaas, itu jaminan mutu buat yg pengen makan siang cepat, enak, murah! Si Anin belum pernah tu makan menu2 itu, jadi sekalian biar dia icip2... hehe..

    Iya euy the boys lagi pada nggak bisa digeret2 ke luar rumah, sementara the girls kelebihan energi - apalagi si Lindri, bisa uring2an abis kalo diungkep di dalam apartemen seharian. Trims Ven >:D<

  17. Selamat Ulang Tahun (lagi) sepupuuuuu...
    Waaah baca cerita perjalananmu seharian ini, membuat aku jadi mbrebes mili mengingat summer tahun ini *hiks*. Terutama bagian stuffed aubergine with black bean sauce..hahaha !

    Pengalaman sama kamu yang paling aku terkenang-kenang adalah yang kita siang-siang jalan sama Dhanu ke Lambiek segala itu dan mampir ngeteh di Pompadour karena kehujanan.

  18. Terima kasiiih *hugs*

    Iya ya, berkesan sekali ngider di sini waktu itu.. Sayang pas ama Anin ini kita nggak sempet ke wilayah Leidseplein dsk itu, padahal Lambiek adalah juga tempat favoritku. Kemaren itu jg nggak ke De Bakkerswinkel, dan nggak ke Museumplein.. hihi.. Kalo mau semua dijabanin, sehari pasti kurang!

  19. Happy buurthday my dear! Eh, tau ga sih gua baru liat foto-foto kita waktu jaman dulu... hihihih... Lots of good wishes & luv from me! Kiss kiss

  20. Kangkung??? Finally! Love them!
    Glad your special day went well.....For the time being, happy packing while watching all interesting DVDs! :-)

  21. thank youuuu!
    foto2 lawas yang mana nih? hahaha mau dong liaaat.. punya gue ada di bandung semua nih! yg ada di sini cuma yg di agenda andalan gue ini (ada elu lho.. kekekek)

  22. Yes, kangkung! I usually order the plain one (only with terasi and garlic). Lekker!
    Thanks for the wishes! The DVDs have to wait a while because there will be so many movies on TV that I've never seen before :D (would you believe I watched the Lord of the Ring trilogy only a few days ago, on Christmas nights, because it was on TV? heehee)

  23. Yes, we did too...three nights in a row, right?...At least Minan watched most part of it! I couldn't open my eyes anymore....Hehe
    I like yr description of 'warm brownie pieces, chocolate sauces and almond slices...' ..made me salivate! :P

  24. waw....memang Oom Gaiman paling cucok buat di Kinokuniya sini beda paperback sama hardcover cuma seribu perak...
    Selamat ulang tahun mbaaaaak Titaaaa
    cup cup
    *maap telat*

  25. hahah... foto kita berenang di waterpark, foto ospek 94, kawinan anies, & foto bersama sebelom ospek kita yang stun A... hahahaha.... ntar gua upload ya kalo udah bener internet connectionnya

    Ahaa udah liat fotonya, iya, gua juga punya foto-foto itu hahaha... Oya sama pas masak-masakan di rumah gua ma dian, jane, vivi, tamce, epit, inuy, ada anak-anak 92 juga, sama rihan, paltok & alex ira kekekeke...

  26. Hi Tita,

    These days I have to send you congratulations over and over again...:-))I am sure that this year will be an important milestone in your life.
    Your shopping/eating trip through Amsterdam made me decide to do a similar one very soon! Happy New Year!

  27. Huh, panjanag amat...:p

    Very detail usual heheheh , mau kekantor dulu,nih ...

    Met Ultah ya,mbak ...(kan, tuaan, situ hihihih)

  28. akhirnya ya fragile things!!! aku masih membacanya... belum selesai juga karena sempat takut... hihihihi...

  29. Mbak Titaaa....indeed it was really fun day!!!Thanks a lot yeee....Saya masih kekenyangan sampe jam 9 malem,akhirnya cuma makan terong n ngabisin kangkung. Si terong masih bertahan sampe makan siang keesokan harinya...hehehe...Pokoknya dalam waktu dekat saya akan kembali ke new king dan toko buku yang membuat orang panik ituh...:D. Anyway..gosip2nya seru abis..ntar cerita2 lagi yeee...

  30. met ulang taun mba tita... maaf telat!! ntar bikin list tempat2 wajib kunjung lagi ya... sebelom pulang ke indo..

  31. Hi Tita, Happy b'day ya! Sorry telat banget nih, baru baca sekarang. Anyway, kayaknya fun banget jalan2 seharian, ketempat2 yg elu senangi, & terakhir makan ice cream, hmmmm I love ice cream......& juga dapat presents yg memang elu mauin & elu sukain.

  32. bert: ada sih versi paperback-nya di sini; di waterstone itu.. tapi harganya terjemahan dari poundsterling.. huuu :((

    alex: whaa berenang yg abis itu pose2 di monumen depan unpad? hahaha.. kocak sekaligus mengharukan, pasti! hayuuuk pasang!

    kekou: thank you :) the end of 2006 was filled with many things at once, indeed. amsterdam shopping/eating is a neverending venture, i'd like to do it again soon, with slightly different route.

    roel: panjang tapi kan banyak gambarnya.. hehe.. trims yaa..

    tas: "sempat takut"?! hahaha ngeri mana sama smoke & mirrors?

    anin: hahaha seru yaa.. berceloteh sepanjang jalan!

    mel: trims! pasti nanti kutinggali tips2 seputar sini :D kamis (tgl 11) sore sempet ke aula nggak mel, nonton sidangku?

    christy: terima kasih :) tempat2 favorit memang asik disinggahi, apalagi kalau sudah lama nggak mampir. plus es krim! hehe..

  33. Well, you've seen me a couple of times demonstrating how good a food is, live, so I thought I might as well be fluent in describing it verbally! Hehe..

  34. itu lho bm, yang cerita tentang anak kecil yang melarikan diri dari rumah.... hehe

  35. Wah telat baca .... happy birthday Tita :)
    Baca ini menjadi inspirasi untuk merayakan ulang tahun :)