Hello from across the pond! I’m writing this to you all the way from the Netherlands. As many of you may know by now, I’m here to study at Utrecht University for a semester as part of an exchange program.

On January 24th, 10:42 AM yes I really did check the exact time when we got there to make sure my journalism is accurate—my parents and I landed at Amsterdam Airport Schiphol after a delayed flight from Toronto to Keflavik, Iceland which made me extra anxious since we only had 1 hr and 10 mins to make it in time for our connecting flight to Amsterdam.

We booked with a budget airline months ago to save costs and reading the online reviews certainly didn’t help in giving me a peace of mind: “THEY LOST MY LUGGAGE! TERRIBLE CUSTOMER SERVICE! AVOID AT ALL COSTS!!!” was the general sentiment of the netizens who poured their heart out. Naturally, I thought of the worst possible case scenario and was mentally preparing myself in the unfortunate event that it came true.

Delayed flight + short connection = the perfect equation for missing luggage

Because they didn’t have in-flight entertainment or complimentary snacks, I brought a good-old-fashioned book and plenty of snacks to keep my mind occupied and my belly full.

After circling around the tarmac for almost an hour, the clock was ticking and I couldn’t do anything besides accept the fact that it’s really not under my control anymore. Whatever happens, happens. But that’s easier said than done.

Eventually, we took off and got to Keflavik Airport 5 hrs later. We got out as fast as we could, got our passports stamped, and proceeded to the gate. Luckily for us, the flight to Amsterdam was delayed 20 minutessometimes delayed flights work in your favour!— buying us more time to use the washroom and get ourselves ready for another flight.

It would be another 3 hrs and 15 mins until we got to Amsterdam and retrieved our checked luggage. Can I just say how *happy* I am that the airline didn’t lose it? 

The rest of the day went smoothly:

  • We met up with a relative who warmly welcomed us into her home for the time being
  • I bought my first Starbucks drink in the Netherlands (I was thirsty and I do have basic tendencies)
  • Took the train in NL for the first time
  • Tried Stroopwafels for the first time (absolutely delicious)
  • Met my relative’s kids and husband
  • Listened to them speak Dutch
  • They taught me some Dutch basics
  • Closed my eyes for a bit to rest only to wake up 3 hours later
  • Had a nice dinner with the family
  • Got ready for bed

Anyway, that was just a little recap of my actual journey. I figured it’s the kind of thing that people would want to read. I hope you enjoyed this, and I’ll be back with more NL adventures! Tot ziens

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