Think of the world’s heaviest, most armored and dangerous helicopter ever. And imagine this helicopter doing a looping. Impossible? Don’t think so.
This OneMinute video shows you how fast and acrobatic an Apache attack helicopter can be. For me, filming the helicopter was an experiment. It’s the first time I filmed a really fast moving object using my tiny Panasonic camera. Because of the crowds, I couldn’t use a tripod. Everything is filmed handheld.
I have to say, I’m quite satisfied with the result. Please enjoy OneMinute number ten.
As a young kid growing up, I collected many posters about the Dutch military. Jeeps on rough terrain, special forces exiting Chinook helicopters, snipers waiting for the enemy and many more posters. Last month I felt like being part of the action on these posters. I went to Assen where the Airmobile Brigade conquered the TT circuit in a combined attack on the ground and by air. This spectacular operation took place as part of Falcon Autumn, the largest military exercise in the Netherlands in the past 15 years.
It was hardly impossible to enter the motorsport race track. Nonetheless I found a gate which the military left open. I didn’t quite get to where the shooting happened, but I was the only civilian surrounded by soldiers. The next few hours I felt like I was walking in a movie. Soldiers walked next to where I was, Chinook transport helicopters flew over my head and armored vehicles drove next to the camera. It was awesome!
The Third Tuesday of September. Everyone in the Netherlands knows what this means. Every year on this day the Queen addresses a joint session of the Dutch Senate and House of Representatives in the Ridderzaal (Hall of Knights) in The Hague. This address is called Troonrede (Speech from the Throne). Or perhaps we should call it the State of the Union.
Prior to this event the Queen arrives by procession at the Hall of Knights. Many soldiers and bands march in front of the Golden Carriage which bears the Dutch Monarch from the Noordeinde Palace to the Ridderzaal. The moment she arrives… Wait… Hold on… Did you say Golden Carriage? You mean a carriage made of gold? Real gold? Yes, that’s right. Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands has a carriage made of gold. Actually, the coach is made of teak wood, covered in gold leaf. It is pulled by eight beautiful horses. But still, it is gold. And it looks great.
Last year I went to The Hague to see this event. Not all traditions are great. But this is one to keep.
Last week I went to a football (or is it soccer?) match of Benfica vs. FC Twente in Estádio da Luz, Lisbon Portugal. It was a Champions League qualifier so there’s a lot at stake. The winner of this match enters this prestigious European football league and gets awarded millions of euros (for just entering this tournament).
Since I am not a fan of either home or away team, I would normally choose to support the home team (in this case Benfica). It’s really fun to support any home team, since they usually make the most noise during a match (in this case about 50.000 Benfica fans vs. 150 Twente fans). But there’s a problem. Benfica is Portuguese… Twente is Dutch… I am Dutch also. Not to root for Twente would be close to treason against my country…. And I have no particular reasons to like Benfica. So I rooted for Twente. The away team.
So far so good. I entered the stadium and found my seat on the third tier. I quickly noticed the hard-core Benfica fans were in another part of this Stadium of Light, which is how the stadium is named in Portuguese. I figured this would allow me to cheer for the away team without putting myself at risk. Meanwhile the beautiful Champions League tune started to play in the stadium. Moments later, the game started.
Immediately after, a guy sitting in front of me stood up and started shouting and cheering in Portuguese. Quickly several other supporters followed. It didn’t take long before I, together with three other Dutch people, were surrounded by over-passionate Benfica fans. This resulted in me not knowing what to do. I didn’t want to cheer for Benfica, since this felt like treason. But I also didn’t dare to cheer for Twente. It might simply be too dangerous. Who knows what would happen when this Benfica-guy in front of me would turn around and…
Let’s put it simple. I’m Dutch, Twente is Dutch. I have no particular reason to like Twente other for the fact they’re Dutch. Since Benfica was simply too strong for Twente (the match ended in 3-1) I decided to make as much fun as possible and joined others in singing Benfica songs, et cetera. The Benfica crowd is one of the most passionate I’ve ever seen which made it one of the best matches I’ve ever seen!
Several years ago I started my architectural studies in the Netherlands. Since then, my life accelerated. I lived in five different countries, biked all across the Netherlands, designed a mega church and started working as director. Oh, I also co-founded a company. And I feel like I’m just warming up!