Yesterday I went with our friends/neighbors, Bruce and Linda, to the Pinstersjaarmarkt at the Duin and Kruidberg Country Estate in Sandpoort. We took the train, which is always a pleasant experience, getting off at the Sandpoort Noord stop. The Pinstersjaarmarkt was just a 10 minute walk from the train station.
What a beautiful building! The tour was in Dutch (of course), so Linda helped me out by translating the main points for me!
One of the entry doors, as you can see by the inscription on the door, the estate was built in 1909!
We had a nice afternoon walking around the market. I was a bit disappointed though that there weren't
more handmade items for sale. We did buy some nice "stinky" cheese!
On the way back it started to rain. We got back to Haarlem and stopped at Stempels for a beer and some bitterballen! That was very sweet of Bruce and Linda to treat me to a nice afternoon while Andrew was home working!
Andrew took me out to dinner for my birthday to a very nice restaurant called "Lambermon's".
We started with a nice glass of South African sparkling wine. For dinner we decided on a 3 course meal. We both had a nice "amuse" plate (appetizers). The next course was an avocado crab salad, and the main course was a beautifully presented and delicious plate with tender beef, asparagus, a white sauce and a delicious truffle sauce. With it the waiter paired a nice red wine from Chile called: Morande Carmenere Reserva from the Maipo Valley. Delicious!
Andrew had gotten me a cake the day before which we had shared with Hans and Angela so we decided to go home and had a nice slice of cake and some decaf coffee. What a wonderful meal! The end to a great birthday!
Andrew received an email from our Dutch tax consultant who told him that I am going to have to pay "social security tax" here on my U.S. retirement income!!! HUH?!?!? I also have to pay up to 10% "wealth" tax on my "worldwide" income, savings, and investments!!! Unfortunately, we did not know this till now....no one had warned us of this prior to moving here. It probably wouldn't have changed anything, but we could have made some changes in my accounts if we had known. We have no idea yet what this is going to cost us.......We also found out that people here are taxed on any savings over €40,000.....doesn't encourage people to save at alllllllll! Seems they want to keep people reliant on the government in the older years rather than relying on themselves and what they've saved all their lives....
My youngest son will be coming for a two week visit this next weekend! We're realllllly looking forward to it! I have a whole list of places I'd like to take him....Duin and Kruidberg being one of them! I'm hoping for a sunny (or at least warmer and dry....) day so we can sit outside on the patio for lunch!