A Visitor

There was an unexpected visitor. He/She/It arrived on Friday night, and the first Himself and I knew about it was when Edgar was toying with him. I’m afraid it has finally happened. We’ve had in our apartment our first Amsterdam mouse. We always thought they wouldn’t be stupid enough to come into our apartment because of the smell of the cats. But it seems we were mistaken.

Edgar cornered Mickey, and Himself and I went into action to try and get him captured. We bailed him up inside the facing of the wardrobe, intent on purchasing baits and traps the next day up at the local garden centre. (We’d seen baits here on previous visits, so it was as good a place as any to start.)

As we walked through the car-park we got a hint that two weekends to Giftmas may have been the wrong time to go to the local Garden Centre. It was PACKED with families and their dogs. It was also done over to make the most of the season.

Upon entrance you could see the small live fir trees lining the pathway, but there was also a very distinct sound, and some suspicious giggling coming from around a blind corner. As we looked at each other and tried to convince ourselves that it couldn’t possibly be true, we rounded the corner to be confronted with a train and children riding it.

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But that was nothing compared to what was around the NEXT corner!

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The centre had set up every piece of the Lemax Christmas train line collection. And you could ride above it all in a gondola. We were utterly blown away! I’d also like to point out that the photograph above is about a quarter of the display.

For at least two of my readers who are into trains and tree trains, I’d like to show you that they had four aisles of smaller pieces, people and paraphernalia, and another 3 walls of all the different buildings that you could buy. Of course there were also extra tracks, carriages … etc … *dies*

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The Cloggies are an ingenious bunch too! But you knew that! Given that there isn’t necessarily a lot of space in anyone’s apartment to set up scenes like the centre has done (though more people than I would have thought were buying the backdrops) you also have the option of buying completed scenes, or the makings to put together your own.

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I can just see one of these in our fireplace next year! It contains everything, keeps it cat and dust free, and I saw a yarn shop building too!

However, this was just the beginning of the Giftmas madness. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, owls are really popular this year!

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I really wanted these, but Himself wasn’t convinced. I don’t understand why.

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Three foot high unicorn anyone? I wouldn’t have minded one of these either, but given that the covering was feathers, I was afraid of providing a €100 chew toy for the cats.

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Decapitated polar bears have made a big comeback again this year. I still don’t know why, and I don’t understand it either. Can someone help me with this one?

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The Christmas Spirit was in evidence everywhere. Even on the statues in the coffee shop. And by the time we go there, we really needed the coffee! I love a Garden Centre with a coffee shop!

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We spent several hours in the centre, and it has taught me a valuable lesson about the Season within the Netherlands; last year, we bought and had a tree up on the 1st December. This year was the same. This means that each year, I hadn’t actually shopped for Christmas things in the Dutch Christmas Season. Because Christmas doesn’t begin here until AFTER Sinterklaas has left! I had NO IDEA it was this insanely magnificent! BUT I have learnt for next year!

Somehow we did also find the mouse poison.

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We may also have found something else which might have some home with us … It filled a noticeable gap from the one left behind in Sydney.

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Edgar and George are happy. Let the Giftmas begin!

3 thoughts on “A Visitor

  1. Can’t wait to see more of Edgar’s antics with the tree train. 🙂

    Did you ride in the gondola over the scene, too? Based on the floorspace allocated to these trains and scenes, they don’t seem to be as popular here as they are in the Netherlands. Or maybe they’re particularly popular in the larger and more posh garden centres that I rarely visit this time of year?

    The unicorn-as-€100-chew-toy made me giggle. And what a curious owl — does he have ears sticking out on the side like a Gremlin or is that my computer monitor playing tricks?

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