Met up with work colleagues at Schipol airport - conveniently they caught the plane in that Loz was catching out, so it worked well. From there we headed to the hotel close to the customer meeting, just outside Hicksville, Netherlands (town actually called Zoeterwoude - wow, they have 8000 people living there...) The hotel was a glamourous Holiday Inn (I'm never quite sure what to do with that second bed), which in fact was not too bad. Especially the indoor-tropical theme they had going on:
We headed to the bar, meeting up with the other out-of-towners from the customer and Colt. From there we went on a GPS navigation adventure (including going the wrong way down one-way streets, and being directed through dead-end roads) to sample some of the fine Indonesian cusine. Aparently before the Dutch abandoned their colonies in Indonesia, they did manage to bring back some locals. The food was good if a little strange - I'm guessing the dutch can be blamed for the hard boiled eggs in the satay?
Day 5 proper saw my work colleagues surface a little shady (my hardy Australian composition meant I was fine though) and we headed to the meeting after a generic hotel breakfast.
Note I have not mentioned who the customer is... after the rigmoral of getting through building security (how many companies do you know that have their own luggage x-ray machines and perform a quick background check on visitors?) I presume they are now monitoring my every move, and probably already know the first three boy/girl-friends of everyone that has posted a comment on this site... however, I digress.
We had a tour of their facillities which were all very impressive - it's amazing what a not-for-profit company is capable of... it helps to skim a percentage off every interbank transaction the world over though. Seemingly, the only thing that would stop the place running would be a nuclear blast directly overhead - and even that would only be after the month of diesel runs out and no one wants to deliver more into the fallout zone.
For lunch we were given some of the wonderful dutch "food" - which was just about all my colleagues could bear, so we made a beeline for the airport. A hair-of-the-dog or three later at the airport bar took us to departure time, and as Priority Boarders, we got to wait with other half of the plane that were also Priority Boarders... I tell you, it's just not as exclusive as it used to be!
And that is Holland, only without the redlight district or "cafes"... but we'll leave that to the youngsters!