September – US passport & Amsterdam (work) & Berlin (Marathon)

After becoming a proud US citizen, I knew my first business trip since 2019 was coming up on September 6th – to apply the normal way for an US passport…. I investigated how to get an emergency passport…. and to make a long story short. I did get an appointment on the day I was flying to Amsterdam….in Stanford Connecticut….lucky our friend Noelva and Alex live only 30 minutes from Standford and were so kind to have us the night before!

On September 6th we rock up at 8am and I left by 11am with a brand new US passport. I felt like new born. We had extra time to spare until I had to go to the airport to Newark.

The trip to Amsterdam was also a success. To see so many customers and partners after 3 years was incredible rewarding. It felt like a reunion.

On top my wonderful friend Ting Chris from our Singapore time send me a text on the day I arrived in Netherland (she moved recently to Holland) which inspired us to meet for a dinner – we saw each other the last time in Singapore in 2015. I hope that is a new tradition we started to meet once a year.

Another proud moment was that I rented a small electric boat and took one of my customer through the canals of Amsterdam. The boats are really easy to maneuver, but the canal traffic can be daunting.

All in all my first exhibition trip was a true success.

After Jolanda’s business trip to the Netherlands she came back for a few days and were were off to Berlin. I applied for 6 years for a ticket for the Berlin Marathon in the lottery, eventially I got lucky and I got my entry this year. This is the marathon I always wanted to run in my home country.

The journey to Berlin was a bit of a bumpy ride with a flight to Frankfurt and a train ride afterwards, but we made it despite all delays. After a bit of sightseeing we participated on the Saturday in a 5k morning run around Tempelhof airport (first airport in Berlin). Right there I could pick up my number for the run the next day.

On Sunday we had perfect weather for running, amazing people cheering and nice scenery. I started slower than usual to enjoy and not push too hard, that payed off as I was running all the way through and did not suffer at all. Not my fastest marathon but definetly one I enjoyed the most. Jolanda supported me all the way and ran a bit with me.

The next day was more sightseeing and Jolanda surprised me with a tour on a bed-rickshaw. The driver was very nice and knowledgeable, we enjoyed our 2 hr ride and lot of people took pictures of us.

Unfortunately the next day we had to leave, but we already planned new adventures.

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