Olives with garlic. A mellow, salty taste, not made bitter by pasteurization and months in a jar. Firm, meaty contrasted with the crunchy picked garlic. Nothing better.
Maastricht began as a Roman bridge over the Maas River. Throughout its history, Maastricht has been fought over by many countries including France, Germany, US, and Spain.
Another smaller river flows through Maastricht: the Jeker. Just beyond the Jeker’s banks is the old city walls. Now a park runs along the old wall. Below is an image of the park, to the left is a fenced area containing goats, deer, and peacocks. On the right corner, you can see the edge of a bird aviary.
Inside the city, the Jeker breaks into smaller streams to power mills and flood fortifications. Enemies often tried to tunnel into the city, so the Jeker was diverted to flood these tunnels.
Leaving the city through old walls, you pass under Helpoort. In olden days, you could feel the fires of tanneries just beyond the arch. Plague victims left the city through Hellsport.
In later years, the city would build a sick house (below), just outside the walls, but until then, the plague victims died on the grass beside the Jeker.
Today, the old city houses high-end fashion stores, chocolatiers, and restaurants. I feel terribly out of place in my wide leg jeans and long trench coat. Here, the ladies wear their slimmed down jeans in boots. Their high heels clicking the cobble stone. The jackets are smaller and tailored at the waist.
Here are some fashions for Spring.
After wandering past the Basilica, we came to the main shopping street, where we were forced to stop at the V&D by whining children. Inside they were putting up the breads and pastries for the evening. We snagged some beautiful chocolate and those WONDERUL meringue – light and airy, yet chewy in the middle.
Here is something for the aspiring writers amongst us. One day, may our books be sold in the church converted into a bookstore.