This weekend, B. and I joined friends for a trip to Maastricht. My grandma lives there, so I know the city a little (though apparently not enough to guide us to the Coffeelovers cafe within the Selexys bookstore without having to stop and ask the way). We wandered through the city and into several stores, visited the opulence hidden within the St Servatius Basilica (hint: lots of gold (leaf) and lots of relics), stopped for a drink by the water and then finally ended up at a Thai for dinner (delicious, although some of us were a bit impeded by the whole chopsticks thing). It was a bit of a splurge for B. and me, since we never go out to dinner, but it was more than worth it.
And then on Sunday I joined other friends for a quick trip to Ridderkerk, to witness the baptism of a friend’s baby. They belong to a conservative church, so I spent Sunday morning obsessing about the length of the only clean dress I had in my closet. As soon as we walked in the door, we were pegged as outsiders, mostly because we weren’t wearing hats like the rest of the female congregation and also asked for psalm books to get us through the service instead of bringing our own. At least that meant we had a friendly usher to show us to our seats.
Our friends really appreciated that we had come, which was good, as those kind of churches give me all kinds of angst and I needed all of yesterday to recover from the dour, fire and brimstone Calvinist sermon. But hey, that’s what friends are for.