Thursday, September 07, 2006

A Higher Viewpoint - once a year

You have seen this before on my pages, our local version of the White House, the first sky scraper on the European continent, visible in the distance in the picture below.

Nowadays it is completely dwarfed by the surrounding offices and residential buildings.

Once a year, the during the Rotterdam Harbour Festival, visitors are allowed on the roof of the White House.

This is a great opportunity for us harbour dwellers to see our barges from an unusual perspective.
The third barge, bottom left, is my good ship Luxor. My next door neighbour, mostly hidden by the foliage, is VallyP's Vereeniging.

Thanks to a high viewpoint and a long lens.

A view of the slipway - so that's how it works.

Traditionally, on that particular weekend's Sunday, the sailing barges leave the harbour for a slow motion race on the river.

The weather was so bad that I missed the race, just caught a bit of the end.

'Shanty choirs' consisting of what look like retired sailors. What if I could choose between a Who concert and this? Hard to say. Well, not that hard.

This pic is especially for Dale. See the art nouveau letters saying Het Witte Huis? If you misspell that badly (as the English tend to do) you get The White House.


VallyP said...

Wow, Koosje. I hadn't seen all these pics I think. The first one is lovely of all the barges in the Haringvliet, and the ones from the top of the Witte Huis are fantastic. I wish I'd been up there too...s'not fair ;-(

Koos F said...

Sorry Val, I realised it's not fair, tried to keep it a secret, then forgot to. Terrible, innit?

gypsy noir said...

chanty choirs..yay! thinking captain pugwash...wheres the black pig???..val he has a hidden stash...

Koos F said...

Glad you like it Gypsy dear, or do you?

gypsy noir said...

i thought they were great!!...

Lannio said...

Hi Koos, Hummmm you forgot? Do I detect a theme amongst the two of you ;-) ?

Lovely photos. Nice to see your homes. I used to birth a boat in one of the Toronto marinas and my next door neighbour lived on his sailboat full time. He was a very interesting fellow who made megga bucks at one of the many banking head offices here. He could of afforded a mansion but prefered to live the simple life. We called him "The Water Rat".

Me? I've always liked boat people.

Ahva Rahn said...

There a many Irish pubs, Koos, where these Shanty Choirs would be a roaring success - they wouldn't have to buy a drink all night! Especially if they do that Drunken Sailor sea shanty- heave-ho and up she rises.

Koos F said...

Forget? Theme? Somebody break the spell.
Keen observer you, Lannio, and what a nice bit of colour in your water rat story.

Hi Ahvarahn,
Good news for them, bad for me.
But then after a whole weekend of loud choirs all over the harbour where we live. There's no escaping them. You hear two or three choirs at a time. It's... different.


Your latest batch of photos brought back some good memories. My Mother worked in the White House for many many years (late 1940's through late 1950's)

Rotterdam...wat en stad :)

MIA said...

thanks for the visit.. and the wonderful phoyos on you post, lovely!

Anthonetta said...

Hi Koos,
You were on de Witte huis too? look at my blog we have simular pictures, couldn't avoid it, must happen some time.
So I make Val even more jalous!


Dale said...

Koos, I've been here three times and have been interrupted each time before being able to leave a comment...

Hopefully this is it - please forgive me LOL ...I sang it (in the appropriate falsetto) when I read your comment.

Your pictures are well worth pouring over, as they show your world from an unusual viewpoint.
I especially liked the one of your barges from above - like looking down from a mountain...

The building is rather unique - too bad it's now dwarfed by all the other boxy sky scrapers.

Is it really called the White House?

...apparently they're everywhere!


Dale said...

Lannio, it was hard enough birthing babies...

Anne-Marie said...

What great pictures! It's funky to see what the cubic houses look like from above.

The stormy waters look so much more menacing than they did in the middle of July.

Oh, and I think, having seen the Who repeatedly, I might just chose the old guys, and by that, I mean the sailors.

Koos F said...

Hi Dale,
I've added a pic especially for you about the White House. You may have to hit the reload button.

Did you know Dutch is the root of all languages?

Hi Anne-Marie
I tend to forget that you have first-hand knowledge. That water can be pretty choppy, you're right, and I tend to take the special things like the cube houses for granted.
Are you alright? Or do I feel a strange pulling on my legs?

Koos F said...

Ah, forgot that Pete is a keen sailor!

Pyrhonik said...

Dear Sir,

This is a wonderful post, but your one comment snagged me and I must ask. How is Dutch the root of all languages?

Murphy's Ghost said...

the root of all what?

Dale said...

The What House?

Yes The Who over "I's the bye that builds the boat..." any day. Newfoundland...

Dale said...

Ah I forgot... I love Pete.

Sorry I'm gone now... just had to throw that in - coming from one dressed as Angus.

Anne-Marie said...

If I were pulling on your legs, you'd know... ;)

I feel a certain Who fatigue- there have been grumblings and all sorts of shenanigans from the concert promoters here in NA and a lot of people are quite ticked off. I hope I get over it by December, which is when they hit town.


Murphy's Ghost said...

Ok Anne-Marie - spill.

What's with the Who in NA?

Koos F said...

Hi Pyrhonik
Most flattered that you address me as 'Sir'.
Re Dutch the root of all languages, just a matter of time, the rest of the world is about to discover the same.
I need to find a link to a site that explains this in convincing detail, so check back often. Meanwhile, don't hold your breath.

Hi Dale
I'm only a simple man, any way you can consolidate?

Sorry Anne-Marie, the promoters can't ever be as good as the concerts they promote - not that it makes you feel any better... yet

Erik said...

Hi Koos,

You obviously did miss the race, calling it slow (!) motion. Shame you weren't there. We saw up to 9,5 knots on the log, and that is by no means slow for a sailing barge.

Cheers, Erik

Pyrhonik said...

Thank you for that. My right leg used to be shorter!


Koos F said...

Forgive me, Erik, 8.5 knots is blazing fast for a freight barge. And that's no joke or buttering up. Wow.

My description was about the impression one gets from a distance.
Anyhow, I hope I am not doing anyone wrong in this harbour, I think you are the first neighbour to commment on my blog (Anthonetta is close, but not the same harbour).

Dale said...

Koos, what you sees is what you gets...

The more the merrier - no consolidation on the grounds that I'm of two minds over most things...

Koos, you are my hero.

...remember that.


Koos F said...

Dale, you type just a few words and life is richer - again. It's magic.

Pyrhonik, I hope your leg is alright. The fascinating truth is, a (Dutch-)man has written a book to prove Dutch is the root of all languages - and he really believs his point (I don't, but quoting his ideas now and then is good for the atmosphere ;-)

Dan L. said...


You have a very neat, very much "Discovery Channel" type blog...if you know what I mean. I like it.

--Dan L.

Koos F said...

Thanks for that comment, Dan. Love to go on along these lines.