After a failed attempt at finding some more stuff at our local garden center, I asked Teko if he wanted to go somewhere on this beautiful spring day and off we went on our merry way out of the city to a place that we hoped wasn’t overrun with likeminded chill seekers. Our original thought of going to Beatrix’s hood by Lage Vuursche got diverted to the Keukenhof area in Lisse, which was surely counterintuitive if we wanted someplace quiet since it was the opening weekend for the yearly flower gardens. Much as I would have loved being surrounded by so much beauty and color, being in a sea of Asian tourists jostling for space, while trying to take the perfect selfie was the last thing I was ready for and thankfully we veered past and away from the usual park entrance and ended up in an oddly empty parking lot a short walk away from a small castle, appropriately named Castle Keukenhof. I saw no more than half a dozen people in the entire estate and the restaurant we were zeroing in on was completely empty apart from two staff so I was a bit concerned. Wearing just a thin jacket I was also afraid I’d regret it but since we had a choice of anywhere to sit, a nearby heater solved it perfectly. And having the entire restaurant all to ourselves turned out to be a luxury as the service ended up being great it made even the limited menu, and the Dutch version of brunch, feel satisfying. A quick walk around the estate afterwards and we were on our way back to regular programming. We have survived yet another Northern European winter ❄️.