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An almost black hollyhock [July 3, 2009]


The hollyhocks are coming into their own all over the city right now. This one, on the Willemstraat, is almost black.

It's been a hot week. Oldest child finishing school with all the performance that entails - endless partying for it, and endless 'so what are you going to do with the rest of your life' from us. The formal graduation ceremony was hell. Hundreds of parents and teenagers packed into a boiling hot gym while teachers do their best to say something intelligent and or amusing about every child.

Afterwards, as child headed off for fun with friends, we had possibly the worst dinner ever eaten at a city restaurant. Dried up, cold spare ribs, dried up cold corn on the cob and an alleged baked potato which had in fact been boiled and topped with a blob of something white and sticky. Other half was given cold baked sardines and chips which had obviously seen better days and been re-cooked several times. Shape is a sports club on the 2de Hugo de Groot straat and used to do great quiches and chips. What happened?

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