Rotterdam or the city of wind

While the wind is howling around the house we stay in, we made the decision to go to Rotterdam the next day. I don’t remember that I ever experienced such a strong wind. Well the word storm actually describes the weather conditions much better.
This morning it was just slightly windy in Gouda. Most of the memories from the noise of last night were gone. Some rain drops still fell from the sky. But they couldn’t stop us (Des, Floor and me) from going to Rotterdam. It’s just a drive of 20 kilometers. Time enough to stop raining. And it did stop. But instead of the rain the wind picked up. An incredible strong wind. Windstorm. It was quiet funny because you could walk on the street without feeling any wind and suddenly the storm blows you away while you pass a gap between the buildings. Just like that. It didn’t bother us too much. We enjoyed ourself flying through the wind. And watching other people struggling in the wind. Quiet entertaining. And it became even better. When Floor decided to take us over the Erasmus bridge. The big bridge in Rotterdam. The bridge where you receive an award if you passed it without getting blown away. Floor, the lightest one of us couldn’t really walk. That’s why Des put her arm around her to keep her on the ground. And both of them laughed the whole time about me walking in front of them. If you can call it walking. If I am alloud to recommend you something than it would be not to cross this bridge with any bags in your hands, because they react like parachutes in that strong wind. And if you can’t deal with 3 parachutes in the same time – just leave it. The people in the cars in the traffic jam were literally dying from laughing. Just because of us. Yes it was funny. Yes it was windy. And yes it was very entertaining.
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We estimated the wind on the bridge on around 40 to 50 knots. Yeah I know that is a lot, but yes it was as well very stormy. But we managed it twice to get over the bridge.
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„This is not your lighthouse!“ Oh yes it is. The lighthouse of Rotterdam. Almost disappears in between all these huge buildings.
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In the beginning of the day I was a little bit worried that I will get hit by a flying item. But it didn’t happen. Rotterdam is wind proofed. Totally wind proofed. Nothing is flying around. There might lie half of the million bicycles of Rotterdam on the ground, but they don’t fly in the air. They just fell. Well and a few scooters were as well in the horizontal. But that’s mainly it.
All the signs – wind proofed.
Construction areas – wind proofed.
Flowers – wind proofed.
All the trash bins – wind proofed.
Shops – wind proofed. 
Traffic lights – wind proofed.
Skyscraper – wind proofed.
Actually everything is not only wind proofed, but even storm proofed! I think the Americans should copy that system to protect themselves from the tornados. It might work there as well.
So that was my windy experience of Rotterdam. Very entertaining! Almost as entertaining as me paying at the market hall. Trying to get rid of the coins. Paying in Cents. „10 Cents are missing!“ says the salesman. I am getting there, no worries. Putting a 5 cent coin, 2 times 2 Cent and a 1 Cent Coin on the table. But what is she doing? The woman takes the the 2 and 1 Cent Coins and pushes them back to me while saying „you can go with them back to Germany“. You should have seen my face. Totally confused. Why? Two plus two plus one makes as well 5! „Yeah but we don’t have them in the Netherlands!“ Really? That is pretty awesome! These coins are anyway useless. Worth nothing. While walking away I am still talking about the fact that I can’t believe it, that the Dutch stopped producing and using these coins just after the introduction of the euro. I still think that this is very smart.
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Since I am very curious I had to Google that right now and Wikipedia explained me a few things about the 1- and 2-Cent coins. First of all, Finland was the first country who stopped using these coins. They actually never started producing them. With the introduction of the euro in 2002 they just ignored them. The Dutch stopped producing and using them as the second country. In September 2004 followed by the Irish one month later. But according to the law these countries have to accept these coins, because it is legal money in the currency union. (I just found a Dutch 1-Cent coin, should have realized that yesterday…) However, I learned something new and hope that the other countries gonna stop as well producing these worthless coins.

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