March in hindsight


Dutch Comic Con

I went to Dutch Comic Con and I had a blast! I can really recommend it to anyone, it’s a fun day out especially if you look at different things you can do and experience on DCC. Whether you’re into games, books, movies, television show or comics there is certainly something for everyone out there.

Reading and writing

March was the month in which I’ve finished reading the second book in the Monkeewrench series – Live Bait. I really enjoyed reading it. From the moment I started reading it I was wondering what was going on and I really couldn’t figure it out. Which makes it a good crime novel in my opinion.

Music and songs

I decided to add a new part to my monthly posts. One thing I can say for certain is that I’ve been loving Beth Hart latest album, her collaboration with Joe Bonamassa ‘Black Coffee’! It’s been one of the full albums which has been in my favorite Spotify list ever since the album came out back in January.

However my absolute favorite songs of the past month has been ‘This is me’ both versions of the song are on my Spotify list – the original movie version from The Greatest Showman’ as well as Kesha’s version. Both are beautiful, however I think that the the movie version is much stronger. Keala Settle has a powerful voice and she delivers the song with so much passion. I haven’t seen the movie yet – I really want to see it but I haven’t had the chance – however it is definitely on my to watch list.


For a while I have been thinking about changing things around. Part of me was thinking about getting back to running, something which I did a couple of years ago however I the problem was that I had shin splints. A very painful injury which is really hard to get rid off. It comes back and that was what was happening to me. I know that my pain level is pretty high but this was so painful that in the end it made me give up. That was part of the reason why I started doing yoga, I wanted to do a sport and it helped with stress relief of course.

But lately I was feeling restless,  wanted to so something more active. So I decided to sign myself up for the gym. And so far so good, I’ve been going for a couple of weeks now about two or three times a week and things are going really well.

Looking ahead:

  • Pinkpop of course!
  • My birthday is coming up – thirty-six! Ouch!
  • Vacation planning!
  • Camp Nanowrimo has started, I’m not participating but I do love going to those weekly meetings in the Library, it’s so good to see everyone. Even if it is just to talk and have a laugh.

Beth Hart & Joe Bonamassa – Black Coffee


The company that I work for makes – among other things – band merchandise and both Beth Hart as well as Joe Bonamassa is part of that merchandise that we print. Something which I really like because I’ve been a fan of Beth Hart’s for ages. Someone who I really admire and who will always have a special place in my heart. But truth be told if it hadn’t been for these albums that she made with Joe Bonamassa – his name would not mean all that much to me. I really enjoy the songs that they make together but I honestly couldn’t name one song.

Probably because he’s a blues and rock guitarist who has a huge amount of albums out, under which three studio albums and one live album together with Beth Hart. The first one came out in 2011 ‘Don’t Explain’, followed by ‘Seesaw’ in 2013. In 2014 they recorded a performance at Carré in Amsterdam. And this year on January 26th the album ‘Black Coffee’ came out. Another compilation of old songs performed by this amazing duo.

Give It Everything You Got – The album starts with an awesome guitar solo! LOVE THAT!!! Great song to open album with, very familiar song absolutely love it!
Damn Your Eyes – Originally by Etta James is one of my favorite songs from this album, I love Beth’s voice in this song. Simply beautiful!
Black Coffee – the song which names the album, probably the best song to name this album after.
Lullaby of the Leaves – sounds like a very old song and I know it’s a cover (original 1932) but this recording feels like it was actually recorded back in the 60’s! It has that very classical feel to it. It sounds very much a like the version Ella Fitzgerald made of this song in 1964. It’s not really my cup of tea.
Why Don’t You Do Right – Nice guitar/piano/brass section intro I like it!
Saved – definitely the song with the most swing, this song makes me really happy. Try to sit still while you listen to it, I dare you!
Sitting on Top of the World – For some reason when I read the title of this song I had a completely different song in mind. I’m making a different connection, I still do. There is a really nice guitar solo in this song! Play that air-guitar, you know you want to!
Joy – great song!
Soul on Fire – Love this song! It works really with Beth’s voice, sounds classy. The battle fo favorite song on this album is between this song and ‘Damn you eyes’.
Addicted – another very classy and catchy song, nice way to close the album.

So yes it is the third album they did together and it might not be all that surprising since the concept is still the same, it works and it hasn’t lost it’s charm. Add to that the fact that both Beth as well as Joe have a very steady fanbase and I guess that success is guaranteed. I’ve seen Beth Hart live numerous times, I’ve never had the chance to see Joe Bonamassa if I ever have the chance to see them perform live I will go. I would love to see it.

Maybe they do it again in a couple of years! I’ll be listening to for sure. Give these artists a chance especially when you love soul, blues and rock.

February in hindsight


February flew by, of course it’s a shorter month than the rest of them but still it felt like we went from February first to the twenty eight in a heartbeat. I had plans and ideas but not much came together, I need to be better at this, I want to be better at this. I’m working on it, this post is going up tonight on March first no matter what happens! This is my February in Hindsight post and it is posted on the first day of the new month.

The Lion King

I had a blast this past weekend – the last weekend of February – on Saturday my mom came to visit me and I took her out to a restaurant in the city where we had a really nice meal. The ambiance in De Vooruitgang was just perfect, it looks gorgeous! Followed by a nice evening watching television and talking about stuff.

On Sunday we drove to Scheveningen to go see The Lion King – the musical at the Circus Theater. It was truly a beautiful musical. Definitely one of the best I’ve seen so far – with Wicked being my absolute number one. The musical is simply beautiful, the costumes and the way the different animals are presented. It’s really pretty! If you’re like me a musical lover you’ll definitively like this one!

Pinkpop 2018

The Pinkpop press conference has taken place and let me tell you the line-up is awesome! So much better than these last couple of years, especially last year was not my cup of tea.  I’m so looking forward to the show, of course there is always that nail biting moment when you’re trying to get the tickets but in the end it turned out to be a lot easier that I had expected it to me. The sale started at ten in the morning and at ten past ten I had paid online for my ticket. That means that I will be able to see Pearl Jam, Foo Fighters, Snow Patrol, Editors, Miss Montreal en Jessie J! And that is just a small portion of the bands that I’ll be able to see. I’ve seen the Foo Fighters a couple of times before and they rock! They are so awesome! Pearl Jam is one of those bands which have always had this vibe around them. Probably because of their legendary 1992 performance, the last time they were at Pinkpop was in 2000! That was my first year at Pinkpop, but at the time I can’t remember if I’ve seen them. I probably did, but I can’t recall it. I always wanted to see Jessie J live! And now I have a chance to see her perform. There is so much more to see and hear. I need to check out the Pinkpop Spotify playlist.

Reading and writing

I’m still working on that second book in the Monkeewrench series, the book is so interesting! I am about half way through it and I literally have no idea where this story is going. The storyline is all over the place, and so far except for some of the same character there has barely been any connection to Monkeewrench. So I guess that once they become involved in the storyline things will become clearer. This storyline is different than any other book I’ve ever read. Interesting book though, a book like this makes me curious and I want to know where this is going.

This is only the first post I’ll be making in the month of March, I still have some stuff up my sleeve. Soon another post will follow, about an album which came out a couple of weeks ago.

Looking ahead:

  • Pinkpop!!!! I didn’t go to Pinkpop last year and the year before that I only went one day. But this year I’m going for three whole days. I can’t wait!
  • I’m meeting my vacation friends again, up for another fun day the first weekend of March.



P!nk – Beautiful Trauma


I’ve been lucky enough to see P!nk perform live a couple of years ago at Pinkpop. She brought a full show, all the bells and whistles it was during the Fun House Tour. Do I need to say more, she literally brought the whole circus! And I absolutely loved it! She’s an amazing performer, who always goes the extra mile. In this case for one song at a festival I might add they brought the whole trapeze act just so she could fly above the crowd! And so they could drop her down to about half a meter above the crowd while she sang ‘You let me fall!’. Can you imagine the crowd? We went nuts! I had seen many, many, many performances during Pinkpop, Parkpop and several other festivals but I had never seen a show as elaborated as this. Not even when I went to a concert. It was truly awesome! And P!nk’s performance is right up there at the top of my list of favorite performances I’ve ever seen.

Whether it’s a huge stadium show or a one song performance at an award show – she’s performing to the max. But she’s also a great singer/songwriter. She has written many songs over the last two decades not only for herself but also for others. For instance for Cher, Celine Dion, Mya and for Adam Lambert among others. P!nk doesn’t shy away from writing songs with a deeper meaning. For instance ‘Dear Mr. President’ which she wrote as an open letter to George W. Bush about the problems in the world when he was the President of the United States. Maybe she should write and updated version of the song to President Trump, but I’ll doubt it’ll do anything to change his mind.

I guess that many of P!nk’s songs have a certain element in them which a lot of people can recognize themselves in or at least relate to. Whether it is the song ‘Family Portrait’ about parents who fight and eventually get a divorce and how the kids get caught in the middle. I’m sure a lot of kids can identify with that feeling.

Stupid Girls’ is another one of those songs, she’s singing about how most girls are more worried about the way they look than they are about education and how they are perceived by the world around them. At the time it seemed as if she might have been specifically targeting Lindsey Lohan, Paris Hilton and Jessica Simpson. P!nk has always said that she was not targeting anyone specific. But with the examples she used in the song and in the video clip it is not really all that surprising that these are the names everyone came up with at the time because they were exactly who P!nk was talking about.

Just Give Me A Reason’ is the duet P!nk did with Nate Ruess from the band Fun. She actually had to trick him into doing the collaboration. When he sang the song it was only going to demo it, but P!nk convinced him that it had to be a conversation between two lovers. That the song had to show the two perspectives between lovers. Eventually he gave in even though he wasn’t too sure about doing a duet. It became one of the biggest hits. Everyone who has ever been in a relationship will recognize what they are singing about.

Beautiful Trauma is the seventh studio album which P!nk released.
Revenge the song with Eminem – such a funny song, I really like it. It sounds like one of the older songs which Pink made in the past. One of those songs that shouldn’t be taken to seriously but still has a point. And then Eminem comes in, it has been a while since we heard him on a record. At least I haven’t heard him in a while, he tries hard but he’s not that angry Eminem he used to be back in the days.
What About Us – If you can write a song which receives this much airplay on the radio and after weeks and weeks of playing it the song still sounds good and doesn’t annoy in the least bit then you know you got a true gem in your hands. ‘What About Us’ is one of those songs. In fact it’s one of those songs which just keeps getting better and better with time.
Barbies this song sounds familiar to me, it sounds like another P!nk song but I can’t put my finger on which song. Maybe I’ll figure it out one day, but for now it just sounds familiar.
For Now, I really love this song! It’s awesome! So beautiful!
Secrets is one of those song which really make me feel happy, there is a night beat in this song – it’s one of those up-tempo songs.
Wild Hearts Can’t Be Broken another gem in my opinion.
You Get My Love a beautiful ballad, which really shows the singing qualities that P!nk possesses. She doesn’t have the best voice in the world or the biggest range but that is what I love about a voice.

P!nk is someone who deserves respect, because she’s an all-round artist who goes all the way when it comes to her music. I love her voice, her writing and composing of the songs and her performances are like nothing I’ve ever seen before. And I have seen quite some live shows by a very wide gamma of artists and bands, so I think that I can definitely give my opinion when it comes to performances. If you have a chance to see her perform life, do it. You won’t regret it! I guarantee it. She’s extremely driven and talented.

She has been at the top for at least the last seventeen years and I hope that she’ll be around for many more years. I’m looking forward to see what’s in store for P!nk.

November 17 – 19th the weekend update


This past weekend was going really well, when it comes to writing. I am so happy, one of the other Epic Blue Unicorns gave me a superb idea for one of my shorts stories. Last Sunday we had our Ikea meet and one the way back to the city I brought one of the new EBU with me to drop her off at the Station. And we were talking about our stories. She’s writing a science fiction story which is completely different from anything I’m writing. Since I’ve been writing short stories – most of them really short – I only really had one story to talk about the one I was struggling with, the longest of the short stories. The basic concept of the story is that a young girl becomes the guardian angel of her best friend and not a very good one at that!

I wanted the story to get a sort of build-up – because there were some things I wanted to explain without jumping right into it. I felt like it should have been a 5000 word story, when I started. But I was stuck at about a thousand words and that was more or less the introduction of what happened and how the young girl becomes the guardian angel to her best friend.

So we were talking about this and apparently it was still playing on her mind because she send me a PM on the Nanowrimo website. However I’d been so busy with work and writing that I didn’t check the messages. I mean I noticed the number of messages at the top of the page but I figured it was just the regular Nanomails – I don’t really read them, I have to admit. I continued writing more blog posts and short stories and this particular story was still on the back-burner. I knew I wanted to write more because it’s a fun story to write, I just didn’t find the right way to do so yet and I was still thinking of a way to achieve that goal.

Friday at the end of our Nanomeet at the Library she asked me whether I had read her mail and if I could do something with it. I honestly had no idea what she was talking about and I apologized profusely because I simply didn’t see the mail. She only asked me this as we were walking outside so I couldn’t check at that moment so I promised I would read it as soon as I got home. When I read the mail, the pieces of the puzzle started to fall together. What she wrote me was a perfect fit for the story. I can surely implement it and I will, I’ll of course cater it to my story but to my fellow Epic Blue Unicorn it will still be obvious where the idea comes from. I send her a message back, thanking her for what she wrote me and that I’m going to use it because it simply is perfect for this story.

Right now I managed to get the short story from about a 1000 words to 3500 words and I am still not finished with it. In fact I haven’t even started on the part that she gave me. At this point I’m working on the build-up to the moment where I can add the idea into the story. Right now I’m thinking the actual story might eventually be about 7000 or 8000 words before I’m done with it. We’ll see, I’m just really glad that I found the prompt that inspired the story. I’ve really missed this, just getting everything out on paper or well Scrivener in this case. It feels good.

So the writing at this point is going really well. Much better than I have been doing the rest of the month. It still remains to be seen whether I can actually make it to 50 000 but for now I’m doing good. And I’m happy with the progress I’m making on my writing just this weekend I managed to write about 3800 words and the weekend is still a long way from over.

I’ve reached 24 000 words this weekend, and I’m glad I did. According to the stats I should have been at or around 31 666 so I’m about 7000 words behind. That is still a pretty large gap, I’ve said it before and I am going to say it again I will most likely not make it 50 000 words but that’s okay. I feel good about my writing and that is so much more important to me than winning at this point. In fact I already feel like a winner just for the simple fact that I’m writing creative stories. I finished this weekend with a total of almost 5000 words.

Music and writing

I’ve been thinking about my blog a lot lately, I want to write more and I have been trying to find ways to do so. I want to write about things that I like and I’ve always liked music but I write maybe three concert reviews a year and that is not a lot. So I decided that I wanted to do something else with my love for music. And I’m going to do that by reviewing the music I’ve been listening to it might be a good way to get some more attention for certain artists who could use some exposure. My first review was of The Corrs’ new album ‘Jupiter Calling’ and the second is a singer/songwriter who really doesn’t need my help in that department but someone who I really like.

This is something new I’m going to try out, we’ll see how that goes.

The Corrs – Jupiter Calling


A long time ago when we were still buying Cd’s at our local music store I would be first in the store whenever a new album of The Corrs came out. I’ve always loved their music and for as long as I can remember. When everyone else was loving hardcore and trance I was loving The Corrs with their violins, thin whistles and the bodhrán. Which was definitely something else. I don’t know why but that type of music just spoke to me. It was the year 1996 when I first came into contact with the music, I was twelve or thirteen. And this was something I hadn’t heard before. The music really changed me, it was the first music that I liked which not a whole lot of people my age agreed upon. You grow up listening to that typical kids music and around the age of eleven, twelve you start to hear other music being played you start to form your own likes and dislikes. In my case I started to understand what music was about and English became something I was interested in and I wanted to know what songs were about. I became interested in the thoughts behind the music. And The Corrs really were that first band that I loved for that reason. I really like music in general, my taste in music has always been eclectic but for some reason I’ve always been a bigger fan of the lesser known music. I often love the songs that will never become the singles and that might be a strange thing to say when you call yourself a fan.

But with The Corrs that became even clearer. Whenever I heard an album for the first time I could always immediately tell which songs were going to be the singles because those were the ones I liked the least. The songs which I loved have never been any of the singles – not a single one of them. So it has been twenty years since I first heard of The Corrs and they have had quite some time off. White Light has been released merely two years ago, the last studio album before that was in 2005 named Home. White Light, was an awesome album as well, but I hadn’t really heard much from them lately. So much to my surprise I started receiving messages on my Facebook and my Twitter account a couple of weeks ago about a new upcoming album by The Corrs, I honestly had no idea that they were making an album it has been so quiet for so long around them that I simply didn’t expect any albums for the foreseeable future. Especially since their last album was only two years old. And Andrea had claimed that they wouldn’t be making a new album anytime soon. So The Corrs hadn’t really been on my mind, except for their songs whenever they start playing on my speakers in my home or car. Which happens quite often because they are always on my Spotify play-lists and on my usb-stick in my car radio together with songs by Beth Hart and Hanson. Those three bands are always on my music lists. I love their music, always have – always will simple as that.

I really love the new album which came out earlier this month, I think it’s exceptionally good and I am really enjoying myself with it. I’ve listened to it multiple times now on Spotify. And I love it! This album is catered to me, I love all the songs while others might find it a boring record because there are no ultra poppy songs on it and that really made me happy. These songs are where their strength is, they are musicians! They should make music with their instruments and write songs from their heart not trying to be something they are not just because it is what’s popular at that moment. I guess from a commercial standpoint it would probably be better to have that popular song – that huge hit to make sure that you’re up their with the best. But from a true fans standpoint – namely me – those weren’t needed. And that is why I love this album. I feel like the songs are from their hearts. And some songs really feel like the old ‘Corrs’ songs which I loved so much. I really hope they are going to do another tour I will certainly be one of the people who will see them perform live. I have to see them.

Some facts about the new album

Jupiter Calling is the seventh studio album, and it was produced by T Bone Burnett – who is a long time singer, songwriter and producer who has previously worked with Elvis Costello, Tony Bennett and Roy Orbison among many others. He’s also made music for movies, for instance for The Hunger Games (which is one of my favorite movies).

Son of Solomon, the opening song of the album and the first official single. It was released on September 21st. The video made for the song was recorded and edited by Andrea while they were recording the song for the album. The song is very raw and fragile, a side of The Corrs which I absolutely love – there is something mysterious about this song.
Bulletproof Love – If we let love win, let love rule the world. We will be bulletproof. For some reason I really like those lyrics. It seems to be a good solution for all the problems in the world nowadays. Just allow everyone to be who they want to be, believe in what they believe and just be kind to one another. That’s all you need. Not everyone needs to have the same ideas. Don’t hate on each other.
SOS (Song of Syria) is the most politically outspoken song The Corrs has ever produced and was also released as a single on September 29th. It’s obviously a song about Syria. An outcry to help the innocent people in a war infested country.
No Go Baby feels like a very personal song, I don’t know if it is. Of course it doesn’t have to be personal but it sure feels like it. It’s a heartfelt song about the loss of a pregnancy.
Live before I die, this song seems to be opening up to a whole new level of emotion – such a beautiful song! It
The Sun and the moon, a beautiful slow song the perfect ending to a beautiful album.

Other songs on the album include Chasing Shadow, Road to Eden, Butter Flutter, Dear Life, Hit my ground running, A Love Divine and Season of our Love.

Throughout this whole album Andrea’s voice sounds fragile, about to break. I don’t know why but I love it – it sounds pure and honest. There is something raw and emotional in her voice. Well I love Beth Hart so I love raw and emotional voices. But this sounds ‘new’ for Andrea’s voice (at least I never really noticed it before, not in this way at least) but I honestly love her voice even more than I did before.

The thing I really like about this album is the fact that they created it together in a studio playing the tracks live and that essentially became the album. I know that Beth Hart creates her Cd’s in the same manor as does Hanson. All of them are really strong live performers and I have always thought that The Corrs is a stronger live band than they are a studio band. They don’t need special effects to polish their voice or all of those sound effects. If an album is created this way it gives the songs a depth which is different from a full studio album where every line and sound is recorded separately. I find it difficult to explain what I mean. But if an album is created in a full studio rather than every performer, instrument and sound on their own it feels like the songs have more feel to them – truer to nature. The songs are more layered, and therefor to me they sounds warmer and they have more depth. It’s comparable to the Unplugged album they did years ago – sans the audience of course. That literally is the way they recorded this album. I was surprised to say the least when I heard that this was the first time they recorded an album this way. Since they do just about everything themselves from writing and composing the songs to playing the instruments and of course the singing I kind of expected that this would be a natural process for them. But apparently they didn’t do it before.

I know the album is getting mixed reviews but I think it is filled with songs that only The Corrs can make. Typical songs, the type of songs a fan like me fell in love with and what sets them apart from other bands. And if a critic doesn’t like that, that probably has more to do with what’s popular and what is supposed to be good. Yes, I’m a fan. But I can be critical of The Corrs as well, I sure don’t like every song they ever made in fact I absolutely despise ‘Breathless’ which is probably their biggest hit ever. And I can name a few more examples. However Jupiter Calling has pure gems on it.

I really hope that The Corrs will do a new tour next year we need to see them perform again. I need to see them perform again it has been way too long.


Nanowrimo update


It’s the second weekend of Nanowrimo and I am trying to catch up on my backlog. I’ve been behind this whole time and I have no idea if I will catch up in time for the end of the month. I guess we’ll see what happens on November 30th, there are still 20 days left in this month and I’m going to make the best of it. I’ve had some good days and some bad days writing wise, yet so far I have not exceeded the daily word count in fact my daily word count as of this moment is at 850 words. And if I don’t start doing better soon, there is no way I will ever catch up on my back log. Especially knowing that I probably miss out on writing time in the last weekend completely.

Yesterday we had our second library meeting and it was fun, especially good to see that three people who were new last week joined us again for this meeting. And two others had told me beforehand that they couldn’t come but they’ll be back next week. It’s good to see people come back for more meetings, it means we must be doing something right. I guess we are doing good as a group. We, the ‘Epic Blue Unicorns’ have been going strong for five years now every year we have a couple of people who stay with the group.

This morning I decided that I was going to the movie theater first, I wanted to see Thor Ragnarok. I actually had wanted to go last week on Sunday, but I became ill on Saturday night and I was forced to stay at home. This morning I decided that I was not going to take any chances. I wanted to go see that movie today. I loved it! There is much humor in the movie – I really like those Marvel movies. When the movie ended I had some shopping to do and when I came home I started writing.

Will today be the day that I will catch up? Even if it’s just a little bit. Right now it’s close to seven in the evening. It’s Saturday night, so I still have some time left before I have to go to bed. I’m sitting on the couch probably not the most productive way to write but it’s what feels good at the moment. I don’t feel like sitting at my desk. I have the television on, which probably for most people doesn’t help either but to me it feels good. I live alone and I struggle with that fact. When I get home there is no one waiting for me, no one to talk to and if the television isn’t on there is no sound and no movement. So I’m used to the television being on like all the time when I’m at home. Lets face it I’ve been falling asleep with ASMR for the last couple of years. I need sounds around me. I can’t stand the silence, even when I’m going to sleep. I get that there are a lot of people who like to write in silence but to me it feels comfortable when I hear sounds around me. And it doesn’t really make much of a difference to me whether it’s music, a television show or a documentary or if it’s the sounds of people around me when I’m at the library or in a cafeteria. Right now I have Guardians of the Galaxy playing on the television. While I’m writing this post. And right about now I’m doing pretty well. I am almost at the daily word count and I have almost reached ten thousand words. Granted I should have been a hell of a lot closer to twenty thousand words but that is only a number.

For tomorrow we have another write-in planned, this time at the Ikea. We always do that during the month of November. On one Sunday we go to the local Ikea and we sit there for hours to work on our stories. It’s easy, there are drinks and food for a pretty low price and they have enough tables and chairs with electricity outlets for us to make good use of. Expect another update tomorrow.

August in hindsight


I know it’s October by the time I’m finally posting this but September seemed to have flown by without me noticing it. Well I noticed it but it was a month which was too busy for me to take any time for myself. And the few spare moments I had I was too tired to focus on writing. It’s not an excuse but the way life sometimes takes over. Anyway let me start with telling you all about my August.

August was  a strange month, usually August would be the month that marked my vacation time. However this year I had my two week summer break at the end of June and the beginning of July. So my vacation was done long before most other people where even thinking about going on vacation. And the fact that the weather wasn’t too good didn’t really help either. I was at work while one colleague after another left for their break. It was a really strange situation from my point of view to be honest.

It was also the month in which my grandmother turned ninety! A very respectable age especially if you manage to do it the way my grandmother does it. For someone her age she’s doing really well. I love my grandmother, she’s such a sweetheart and we’ve always had a special connection. She’s an amazing woman and I really hope that she’s will continue on the way she’s doing right now.


We’ve had our first ‘official’ reunion with the group from my vacation in Sardinia – I say official because this was a day planned ahead and we already had a mini-reunion at the lake near The Hague where some of us went windsurfing. Anyway this was the official reunion. It was a wonderful weekend, we went to Utrecht. A beautiful city in the center of the Netherlands. And while it is quite close to my home – about an hour away – me and some other people decided that we wanted to stay the night. So we wouldn’t have to worry about getting home. We rented a room with six people in a Hostel. If you ever need an Hostel in the center of Utrecht I can wholeheartedly recommend Stay Okay. It’s a very new – exactly one year old when we where there – Hostel which houses all kinds of different rooms and there were even families with kids and elderly people staying at the Hostel. In the afternoon we went bowling which is always a fun thing to do. Surprisingly the first round started off pretty good for me, better than expected. Not that I was the winner or anything but I wasn’t too bad.

After our bowling adventure we set out to find a spot at one of the many cafe’s for drink, and some pizza slices – something which happened at our vacation and what gave us a good laugh at this point but wasn’t really all that funny when it happened. Anyway after our pizza slices and drinks we went for a walk through the city to find our restaurant for the evening. A lovely small place which was in no way set up to host a group of 15 people but managed to do so anyway. We had a sort of tapas dinner where they made different types of small meals, not just Spanish but everything and anything. We had a lovely dinner. And afterwards we took another stroll through the city. We were planning on going out but it was still very early in the night. Eventually we ended up at Florin, which is the same place we always go with the Nanowrimo Kickoffs! The night ended at a club, not exactly one where I would have gone but it was fun nevertheless. Around three we rolled into our beds – which were luckily for us only a three minute walk away from the club.

The six of us – who rented a room at the hostel – had a very restless but fun night. Everyone slept a little but no one slept nearly enough and after a short night and a way too early shower we were sitting across from each other at the breakfast table. After the breakfast our ways split all over the Netherlands and we all made our way home either by car or by train.

Reading and writing

I’ve finally finished reading the When Woman Were Warriors books, all three of them back to back. I absolutely loved reading the books. They reminded me so much of the books I used to read when I was younger. In a lot of ways these type of books feel like they are historical novels but you know that the story is completely made up. A series of books dedicated to strong female characters! A series of books I absolutely recommend to everyone who loves to read about strong women.

And I started reading American God’s by Neal Gaiman, which is now also a television show. A lot of my friends recommended the book. So I’m really looking forward to reading it and seeing what it’s all about.

Looking ahead:

  • My parents went on their cruise vacation and they left from Amsterdam. I decided that I would bring them and pick them up a week later. So I spend two Sundays driving to Amsterdam, one of them was spend at a city beach and one of them in my hometown where we had a nice meal together.
  • Working lots and lots of overtime in September, like usual.
  • We had the NoSun Festival! Which was fun!
  • And we had another reunion!

July in hindsight



The end of my vacation in  Sardinia was on July first, it was the day I came home very late in the evening due to some delays. My parents picked me up at the airport, they were coincidentally also on vacation and where close enough to pick me up. They dropped me off at a Hostel because it was in the middle of the night and we would drive home the next day. I’ve stayed at the King’s Inn Hostel, which is a great place if you need to stay in Alkmaar for a night and it’s pretty close to Schiphol as well. And the price is really good, of course with a Hostel you might have to share your room with strangers but if it’s only for a night I don’t really mind. However I was lucky enough that I had the room to myself. The other person who would share the room with me didn’t show up.

Concerts and festivals

Beth Hart was at Bospop, the ultimate reason for me to check out a different festival than Pinkpop – which I usually go to. Bospop is a lot smaller and with a smaller festival there are of course also less visitors. But the feel of the festival is about the same, the audience ranges in age from teenagers to people in their fiftees and sixtees. I’ve seen a lot of good performances but Beth Hart will always be at the top of my list. She was amazing!

Reading and writing

I wrote a lot during July, most of it was of course all of my posts about my vacation! About 2621 words in total, which I’m really proud of. It has been a while sine I wrote that many words. Of course I’m not counting November because that is a different month – a special month in which my writing usually goes off the charts.

I read three books these past couple of months and I wrote the review, just now already in August. But I finished the last book a couple of weeks ago, but my vacation blogs were more important to me. So here you can find my view on the ‘When Women Were Warrios’ series. Which I absolutely loved! No real surprise there! It’s about strong women … what more can I ask for.

Looking ahead:

  • My grandmother turns 90 in August!
  • I’m going on a weekend trip to Utrecht with my vacation friends! So looking forward to that!
  • Otherwise I don’t have much planned for this coming month.

Festival: Bospop

It was my first time at Bospop, of course I’m not a newbie to the whole festival scene but every festival is different. Although I do have to admit that this one was quite similar to Pinkpop when it comes to the atmosphere and the type of audience. But of course the music is kind of similar as well. The festival is a lot smaller than Pinkpop in size and also in the type of bands that come to perform.

This year I didn’t go to Pinkpop because I’d already seen a lot of the bands in twelve times that I went to the festival and the bands and singers that I hadn’t seen yet were not exactly on my list of need to see – yes, I’m talking about you Justin Bieber!

However by going to Bospop I was able to heal my festival-heart! In more ways than one, I got to see some new bands which I’d never heard about before. Enjoy some classic bands and of course see Beth Hart.

 I arrived at the festival terrain – of course I was wearing one of my Beth Hart shirts! That is the benefit when you work for the company which prints the t-shirts for Beth Hart! That is a total coincidence by the way and not the reason why I work there. Anyway, I was wearing my shirt and I arrived at the road which led to the parking lot but was also a road through to some town. So valets had to ask everyone whether they wanted to park or where just driving through. One of the girls walked up to my car, she laughed and said; ‘With that shirt I don’t even need to ask if you want to park! Have fun!’

The second time that happened was at the gate. The woman who checked my ticket and did the security check told me that the rest of the fanclub was already inside. It made me smile Beth Hart has a very loyal following and at one time I was in the highest ranks of that fanclub. But due to personal reasons I decided to step back. However knowing that she still has that loyal group of fans rooting for her is always good to hear because in my opinion she deserves every single speck of fame and so much more.

But lets start at the beginning…

Stevie Nimmo Trio

When I arrived at the festival the Stevie Nimmo Trio was performing and the trouble is that they opened, and I had never heard of them before. So they really needed to warm up the audience and if the music isn’t familiar that’s quite hard.

Xander & the Peace Pirates

The second band I saw was Xander & the Peace Pirates, and let me tell you about this band. I had never heard of them and didn’t know their music, so I had literally no idea what to expect. Keith Xander the front-man of the band plays the guitar and he sings. Nothing special, I hear you say and you would be right about that. However Xander was born with only one hand. So he has a hook attached to his right arm and when he plays the guitar there is a plectrum attached to the hook. The music was cool, I really enjoyed listening to it. But just imagine I can’t manage to play the guitar with two hands, let alone with one hand and a hook and have people like Joe Bonamassa and Joe Satriani admire you.

Laurence Jones

Another performance which I really liked was Laurence Jones. Obviously a very young guy but the music he plays really spoke to me. He plays the blues, which I really love. This guy sure knows how to play that guitar! If you ever have the chance to see him live make sure you see it!!! I was really pleasantly surprised, this is why I love festivals I’d never heard of Laurence Jones but I have seen him life and I’ll be sure to check his music on Spotify.


In my opinion you can’t go wrong with a band like Blof in the afternoon especially when the weather is nice and warm. Everyone knows these songs, it’s a very well known Dutch band. And you can always spot people singing along, we know these lyrics. The songs are classics after all.

Vintage Trouble

What a show! That really is all I can say. This bands front-man is a true entertainer! He was literally everywhere – even between the audience at one point in the show. That is what you want to see if you go to a show!


The same that goes for Laurence Jones goes for Delv!s. The music was awesome, he has a beautiful voice, a rich and warm voice. He is a singer with a very bluesy voice but the music he makes with his band is also influenced by gospel, electronica and jazz. Which makes for a very pleasant combination.

The Pretenders

They have been around for almost forty years and that is what you can hear! They have made quite some classics that everyone knows and that really is what works at a festival. If everyone can sing along. I mean ‘Don’t get me wrong’ is about as old as I am, but you know the tune.

Beth Hart

It had been quite a while since I last seen Beth Hart perform live. For some reason whenever she was in the Netherlands I wasn’t able to go and I really hated it. I missed her! Because I love this woman. I think that this was my eighteenth performance of Beth Hart. So yes, I am a huge fan and I loved every concert I’ve seen so far. But this one was special!

Beth Hart was on a roll! From the second she stepped onto the stage till the moment she left. She was on fire! She looked amazing, she sounded better than ever before. She was joking around, she reminisced. She talked about the time when she thought that she had no future and how that first concert in Paradiso in January 2004 changed all of that. And I was there that first time in 2004, her reminiscing and telling us how that performance changed her life. It made me feel really emotional, honestly I had tears in my eyes. That story combined with how strong she stood there made me feel emotional.

There are so many examples of artists ( singers / actors / performers ) who struggle with the same struggles she does and who don’t make it out on the other side better and stronger!

The main difference between Pinkpop and Bospop is the size of the festival, it’s about half the size. And that is noticeable in just about everything. The tent stage and the main stage are right next to each other and the performances are back to back instead of simultaneously, which means that you can easily catch all the performances during the day. With Pinkpop they have two big stages and a tent (and maybe even a second one). With that many stages there are always choices you have to make. And things you can’t see because of the time table, which is always a shame. So in that regard Bospop was definitely better. But Pinkpop is where my heart is, I just love that place!