After a long pause, finally a new blog entry. This time about Maastricht. The first thing I had to do when I was back: I had to check my physical mail. So I went to my room, which is still subleased to a German student until July. When I was opening the mailbox, I had a burning smell in my nose and thought somebody would do a barbecue or something. When I had opened the mailbox, I saw that the smell came right out of the mailbox itself. It was packed with letters and newspapers and somebody must have seen it from outside and must have thought that it was a good idea to set fire to my mail. So he or she did.
When I was removing the ashes from the box, I found a few important letters, from the housing corporation (announcing a rent increase, see picture) and the new internet provider. Luckily, the internet provider’s mail was still intact and I could retrieve the passwords and so on. This happening again showed me that email is superior to normal mail: you get a lot of spam, but no one can burn your important emails.
The next incident had, once again, to do with going to Maastricht by car. As I said, my room is still subleased until June so I simply had to go to university by car. The city of Maastricht has more or less abolished all free parking possibilities during the time I was in Uppsala. Everywhere you have to pay or you have to live in the street to apply (and pay) for a “Parkeervergunning”, a parking permission. However, in a residental area not far away from the university, there is mixed parking with both free and “fee” parking lots.
So I was lucky and parked my car on one of the three free parking lots. When I came back to my car, I had a “ticket” on my windshield, saying in German “please park your car somewhere else next time, this is a residental area not a parking site. Thank you.” This is really annoying since you only get that because of your German license plate. Last year I got already a similar letter with a Dutch swearword on it. So as a driver of a car with German license plate you are permanently threatened by these letters and subsequent actions (broken windows, broken antennas, flat tires etc.).
There are other Dutch cars that use these parking lots, too, without the owners living in this street. And it is perfectly legal to use these parking lots. Besides that, there are no parking lots in Maastricht which are not in residential areas. Park&Ride is only available on very busy days and costs 5 euros. So next time, I’m gonna write a small letter in Dutch saying like “I live here and this is a parking lot for everyone, stop writing these ‘tickets'” and then I put this note behind my windshield to see what is left over of the car when I come back :-) . If it doesn’t work out, we have to discuss a toll for the German autobahn. People who live in Germany can buy a flat fee, others have to pay for every hour of usage… :-)