Susan & Richard's European Adventure 2013 travel blog

Our home on wheels


This is our third day in Amsterdam and we have not yet had the chance to do any sightseeing. We've been busy getting our home on wheels ready to go. Our "home" is a 2007 Ford Rimor with roughly 68,000 kilometers or 41,000 miles on the odometer. The cab was built in Germany or England and the coach was built in Italy. Unfortunately, the vehicle manuals are in Italian and French. Who reads those darn things anyways!!

Upon arrival in Amsterdam we met with the motorhome dealer who gave us a very thorough run down on all the features of the vehicle and how everything in the coach operates. Unfortunately, we had terrible jet lag and pretty much forgot everything. After being up for 30 straight hours we finally slept for 13 hours. Feeling much better it was time to go shopping for all the items we needed to outfit our home. It was kind of like being newly weds again as we shopped for dishes, silverware, pans, pillows and other assorted stuff. Oh, and of course we needed to shop for food. We gathered up our euros and off we headed to the local shopping center in search of a good discount store and supermarket. Here are just a few of the things we very quickly learned about shopping in Europe. First, do not ever forget your shopping bags because if you do, you have to buy a bag. No such thing as a free bag. I guess all of our new shopping bags will have to count toward our souvenir budget.

Second, when you shop where the locals shop you have to do all the work. You have to bag all of your groceries no matter how large the order. If you fall behind, the cashier just stares at you until you get caught up. You even have to bag all your items at an IKEA. In the supermarket, you also have to weigh and record the price for fruits and vegetables. There is a little machine with pictures of all the fruits and vegetables. You place your broccoli on the scale, tap the picture of the broccoli, and out comes your little tag with weight and price. Wasn't so hard once we figured out what to do except that, just like in the U.S.,some items are sold by weight and some are set prices. Since we couldn't read the instructions we had to guess which items needed to be weighed. Fortunately, the other shoppers were very helpful and just about everyone speaks English. The Europeans have also figured out how to solve the problem of stolen shopping carts. To get a cart, you have to put one euro into the handle. When you return the cart to its lock you get your euro back. Also, you can't remove the cart from the store as the wheels lock up. Wish we would have known that before we bought bags and bags of groceries that had to be carried out to the parking lot.

No more"chores" for a few days. Tomorrow we will go sightseeing in Amsterdam. Our campground is walking distance to the metro station so we will leave our "home" parked at the campground.



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