Claire Lesher '19 

After an eventful first day in Holland, and the opportunity to compensate for some of our lost sleep, our team woke up and smelled the coffee, or koffie, at our hotel's breakfast. The Dutch are often known to use chocolate and colored sprinkles to season their bread, and I had to try.... verdict: delicious.

Conveniently, our hotel in Scheveningen is right across the way from the beach (what is the technical name for the beach), so we headed down to explore a bit. Lots of sights and smells were to be had at the pier, where a lot of us had the chance to walk in and out of the quaint vendors and stands that were selling clothing, pictures, and a variety of sweets, like fudge, and of course, stroopwaffles! There's even a Ferris wheel, as well as a landing, where we saw daring individuals bungee jump over the water. In upcoming blog posts, maybe you'll hear about a few of us doing it, too, since we still have a lot of downtime throughout the week!

The day continued. We regrouped at the hotel entrance, and the bus took us chatty girls to A'dam. One thing I've increasingly seen since being here is that field hockey is a sport with greater and wider popularity than what is perhaps regarded in the United States. This quickly became clear once again after our team got the opportunity to watch Jeremy's old club team, Rotterdam, face off against Amsterdam in the afternoon. No matter what age or experience one has with field hockey, the atmosphere of the large field hockey club facilities found throughout Holland attracts crowds of people supporting their team, complete with frites, mayonnaise, and cheers to accompany the great field hockey skill.

Our last destination for the day was at La Lanterna, the Italian restaurant close to our hotel in Scheveningen. The food was fantastic and had some of the best presentation/decoration I've ever seen. In fact, Mackenzie, Anna, and Britt even got their food delivered in tin foil that had been shaped as a duck... or swan maybe? Regardless, the presentation was pretty interesting, as was the rest of the night. Our waiters were quite willing and able to provide us entertainment for the night; and while the Dutch-English and Italian-English language barriers appeared at certain moments throughout the night, we still managed to enjoy a lively sing-a-long under the direction of the Italian waiters and expressed our thanks for the entrees and desserts we received. Ciao and Grazie, La Lanterna!

The day came to a close after the team went out once more near the beach to experience some of the local night life on the water. We met some new people and fared well, since, although far from home, we could still hear and sing to some of the current and classic American songs that the bars played. We certainly learned some new Dutch songs, too!