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Category: Travel

Posts about interesting places I’ve been or want to visit

Marked for Revenge: Settings of my Art Heist Thriller

Marked for Revenge: Settings of my Art Heist Thriller

My latest novel, Marked for Revenge, is an art heist thriller about the theft of forty paintings from modern art museums spread across the Netherlands. It is also the third novel in this series featuring art history student and reluctant amateur sleuth, Zelda Richardson. In this book, one of the museum’s Zelda Richardson is working for is robbed at the beginning of the novel and soon our heroine finds herself entangled with the robbers, mob, and police. To save herself…

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4 & 5 May: Remembrance and Liberation Day in the Netherlands

4 & 5 May: Remembrance and Liberation Day in the Netherlands

4 and 5 May – Remembrance and Liberation Day – are important dates in the Netherlands as they mark the end of the Second World War by honoring its victims then celebrating freedom after five long years of fighting. May 4th is Remembrance Day in the Netherlands, when all those who lost their lives during World War II are honored in ceremonies all over the city. At 8 p.m. there is two minutes’ of silence. This is strictly enforced and…

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Tiger Temple Caves in Krabi, Thailand

Tiger Temple Caves in Krabi, Thailand

This is one of my favorite photos of a trip to Tiger Temple Caves in Krabi, Thailand, simply because this monk is so into his work! And what a great space to work in… This trip to Thailand and Nepal inspired two books: Down and Out in Kathmandu and Notes of a Naive Traveler. Here’s a short excerpt from my travelogue about this cave complex: January 10, 2000: Krabi We also visited the interesting Tiger Temple Caves. It’s a series…

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Panama-Costa Rica border crossing and Holiday Gone Wrong

Panama-Costa Rica border crossing and Holiday Gone Wrong

Would you cross this bridge? Until recently, this was the border crossing between Costa Rica and Panama at Rio Sereno. One I had to cross over several times because of a visa stamp mishap. You can’t see the large holes in the wood from this picture, but trust me, they’re there. I took this picture during a wonderful trip to both countries. The adventures I had formed the basis of my short thriller – Holiday Gone Wrong. You can pick…

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Exploring the Locations used in Rituals of the Dead

Exploring the Locations used in Rituals of the Dead

My latest art-related mystery, Rituals of the Dead, is set in Papua and the Netherlands – two nations on opposite sides of the globe yet connected by a colonial past.   Dutch New Guinea Dutch New Guinea – as the Papua Province of Indonesia was known until 1963 – was considered to be one of the last truly wild frontiers. The seemingly impenetrable interior and extreme weather, combined with rumors of headhunting and a hunter-gatherer lifestyle, enticed many explorers wishing…

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Mission Museum Steyl

Mission Museum Steyl

At the southernmost tip of the Netherlands is a hidden jewel unknown to most tourists and locals – the Monastery village of Steyl. It is situated on a bend in the Maas River, across the water from Germany and close to the Belgian border.   Steyl Mission Congregation The village was founded in 1875 by Father Arnold Janssen as the home for his newly established Steyl Mission Congregation. The brothers and sisters of this Catholic organization built their own self-sufficient…

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Sinterklaas has arrived in the Netherlands!

Sinterklaas has arrived in the Netherlands!

While my American friends and family are preparing for Thanksgiving, here in the Netherlands our ‘Christmas’ has already begun! On Saturday November 18, Sinterklaas and his helpers (Pietjes) arrived by steamboat after a grueling trip across the rough seas. We know how difficult his week-long trip from Spain was because a special ‘Sinterklaasjournal’ – a fifteen minute news program for kids – is broadcast every night on national television, bringing us the highs and lows of his long and arduous…

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November 11 is Sint Maarten

November 11 is Sint Maarten

Last night, Dutch streets were lit up by hundreds of children carrying lamps, in search of candy. November 11 is Sint Maarten, or Saint Martin’s Day. Officially, it’s the feast day of Saint Martin of Tours, a Bishop who was a patron of the poor. One of his more famous acts was cutting his cloak in half and giving it to a beggar. Nowadays, it is a day for children – often dressed up as little bishops, Spiderman or whatever…

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The world’s first Homomonument turns 30

The world’s first Homomonument turns 30

On September 5, the Homomonument turns thirty! In the shadows of the Westerkerk is this unique and imposing monument which was erected to ‘inspire and support homosexual men and women in their fight against denial, repression and discrimination.’ It was the first monument in the world to honor homosexual victims of World War Two. The thing is, you may not even realize you are standing on the monument when you are there 🙂  Three pink marble triangles placed into the…

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Pride Amsterdam 2017

Pride Amsterdam 2017

Amsterdam is painted in vibrant rainbow colors this week! Pride Amsterdam kicked off Saturday night and continues until August 6. This is one of the most fun weeks to be here thanks to all of the celebrations, street parties, outdoor concerts and over-the-top outfits you’re bound to encounter when roaming around the city center. My favorite part of the week is the Canal Parade. Eighty boats representing a diverse array of LGBTQ-friendly organizations will sail through the city center on…

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