The day of Christmas Eve we were cozy and warm in a tall, narrow house in Maastricht, Netherlands, watching in amazement as snow continued to fall. It hadn’t stopped since our arrival the day before!
I got to stay in the attic room, reached by two steep winding staircases. I had one crooked window placed in the roof at a jaunty angle, through which I could watch the snow fall. I have a great fondness for attic rooms. They seem special somehow, tinier than all the other rooms, almost like a treehouse. I always want to stay there for hours, like Jo from Little Women, wearing a quirky hat and writing marvelous stories by candlelight until the wee hours of the morning.
After packing up our belongings we donned caps and scarves, wool socks and boots, and as many layers as we could fit under our coats, and went for a morning wander through Maastricht in search of breakfast.
The town square is a beautiful spot, especially in the winter. Curving streets and gabled buildings are trimmed with evergreen boughs and bright red bows, and at night it is alight with the warmth and bustle of the Christmas market. We’d gone the night before but the snow was falling so thick and fast pictures were nigh impossible to capture! I’ll try to remember to post a few for you anyways. 🙂
I loved wandering through Maastricht, heading down random streets and narrow alleys, discovering warm bakeries laden with freshly-baked rolls and loaves, shops with handmade wares and fabulous boots, and restaurants that serve piping hot coffee and big slabs of schnitzel cooked to perfection.
I’ve never experienced such extreme cold and snow in Europe since I spent a frightfully cold spring in Russia back in 1993. If I were at home in this weather I’d be staying inside, enjoying the show from my warm apartment. But here it seems perfectly sensible to head out in a blizzard, walking for hours through nearly deserted streets, popping into cafes to warm up over steaming cups of kaffee für kir (the delicious Dutch version of a latte).
Now I must dash! Time for coffee and breakfast with my family before we brave the snowy streets of Stuttgart, Germany for a day of shopping and exploring.