We were anxious to check out market square in Brunssum today and do some shopping. We’re already familiar with major Dutch stores like Hema, Blokker, Kruidvat, Albert Hein and Aldi (also in the States). But now they’re our everyday necessity stores and not just curious this and that tourist stops. My first priority was buying a hair dryer and I knew I would find that at Blokker. The curious thing is that they keep all small appliances on display behind locked glass and you have to ask a clerk to get one from the back room. Hema is funny to me because it’s kind of a department store until it isn’t. They also sell ready to eat food and food items. Not unlike Target or Super Walmart I guess, except there are steaming sausages right next to the cookware and two steps away from a rack of tank tops are cold cuts, milk and cheese. 😀 We took a lot of mental notes of things we will need once we find a more permanent home. We found a hardware store, a home goods store and located the bakery and butcher shop. 

Dick got his first taste of kibbling since our last trip. That was our quick lunch before heading to the bike shop. We found some decent used bikes that we’ll try out and possibly buy tomorrow. Next stop Albert Hein.

We’ve been in Albert Hein several times before, but again this trip was a little different. Now we have to depend on Albert Hein! The trick is not only deciphering the Dutch labels and unfamiliar brands, it’s figuring out where everything is located. It’s a small store so you’d think that wouldn’t be too difficult . . . but it is! In fact, I think it’s the compactness that makes it tricky. For instance, the coffee creamer was not with dairy or coffee. It was in a corner near the frozen food (okay it was sort of across from the coffee). I had a hard time finding bar soap until I slowly walked down the most logical aisle — there it was at the bottom in a small basket. There were only two brands and the packages were smaller than I’m used to. We got everything on our list and next time will be easier. 😅

I felt jet lag kicking my butt around 2 pm when we were out shopping, but some food and a Coke Light revived me somewhat. I was still in a haze all day and my patience was on empty. I had enough energy for a walk around the park after dinner and then watching a random show on Netflix. We discovered that our selection of available shows is different here! Dutch titles popped up and some of the PBS shows we’ve been watching aren’t available. I guess we’ll have to wait awhile to see the end of Mr. Selfridge — bummer. Back to jet lag, the cycle that I’ve experienced on each trip here is that I crash the first night and sleep 12-14 hrs because I’m so sleep deprived. The second night I go to bed at my normal time around 10 or 11. Sometimes I sleep for an hour or so, but then I’m wide awake for hours. My body thinks it’s 5 or 6 pm EST. So here I am typing this post at 1 am NL time, because I can’t sleep. 😩