The question got loads of varying responses...
Erin: Girls in skinny jeans or tights with boots and a scarf. It's the national uniform!
Nerissa: Bad manners, sadly. And what Erin said! It's so true! :D I just got home from Prague (brag brag) and no one was wearing leggings, Czech ladies actually wear stockings (or maybe pantyhose?)! Birthday cake! We eat a lot of birthday cake at work and I've never really seen it anywhere else I've lived and I LOVE it! But that's mostly because I'm a greedy cake-eater :P
Nicola: Lack of personal space when waiting anywhere or even just browsing an item in a shop and someone else just has to come and stand in that bit with you....perhaps I should just be happy people want to stand with me? :) Good thing - flower shops that are reasonably priced and biking in the countryside!
Judy: Omafietsen! I have never seen one outside of the Netherlands!
Hilary: The lack of choice. And poffertjes
Jessica: Certainly not the weather today! Warm and sunny, who knew it could happen here? :P An incredible density of both churches and bars... Sometimes right across the street from each other. That's how I know I'm in the Netherlands (not Holland, I live in Limburg), or down at the Jersey Shore. :P
Eber: wind, rain, sun, more wind - all at the same time :D
Zahoor: I agree with Nerissa, people hit you or almost walk over you and don't even bother with the word "sorry", as if you r invisible to them. When that happens I know I'm in Holland.
Susan: The drastic over-use of "possible" and "not possible." In any language.
Carol: flowers readily available everywhere; bikes going by no matter what the weather; the whim & wham of weather by the hour anywhere in the country, and specifically how the sun miraculously can appear after 5,00 p.m. to make an amazing sunset!! ;-)
Anne-Marie: There is ALWAYS someone around. No such thing as empty quiet spaces! Oh, just watching TV with my husband, and realized the BEST clue that yup, I'm in Holland: TV reality shows where I have found saying "Look at the guy in the purple vinyl suit!" is not uncommon.
@marcinerdmann congested highways, everybody biking even if it's -5 and slippery and the smell of weed everywhere;)and when you fill in your tax papers you declare your partner's sex because it's not always the opposite sex;)
@Miss_Neriss Renate Verbaan saying "maaaaaaaaar"
@NomzillaCupcake Going to a restaurant that "doesn't take reservations" and seeing a RESERVED sign on a table. Maybe that's just Amsterdam
As for yours truly, it would have to be: couples cycling side by side while holding hands; women wearing boots and scarves in the middle of summer; and swarms of people sitting on terraces with a beer when the sun is out.
How about you? What is the one thing above all others that makes you think "Yup, this is Holland?"
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