Moving: Vienna To Rotterdam 2016




Happy New Year APJ! May 2017 bring peace, love and joy to our lives.

Let me just come right out and say it. Moving is terrible. Leaving the comfort of my flat and all the luxuries of the known has been the most challenging aspect. Please do not take this post as a complaint, rather as a funny side to the moving experience.

Moving: Vienna To Rotterdam 2016

The bandaid has been ripped off and we landed safely in Rotterdam. The movers got us into the house and then promptly abandoned us at 2 pm stating that they did not want to unpack all the boxes because there was not enough flat surface to place the items on! WTF?! Seriously – we have four floors!!! Too emotionally spent to argue with them, we let them go home. Now, imagine us climbing, sometimes on all fours, the three crazy steep stairs with boxes – no stairmaster is needed. We have it in the house and no health club membership will be necessary.

One major challenge with which we are faced is figuring out what foods are safe for my allergic son. To give you an example – the first night in Rotterdam we mistakenly thought that a sushi restaurant would be safe. The waitress tried telling us to leave because she could not handle my request. All I wanted to know is why there was egg in an avocado maki! The manager came and told me it was because all the sushi has mayonnaise. Really?! I kindly requested that he makes the maki without the mayo and voila we have safe food! So, it will take us several weeks to get our bearings and figure out which grocery stores have the right foods for us and which restaurants we can visit.


On another note, I know that I am short – but I feel positively elflike here. Both men and women tower over me! We needed to buy a step stool to actually climb into the bath tub – my legs are just not that long. My husband placed one step stool on every floor as there are even light switches I cannot reach on tippytoe. Don’t even get me started on the cupboard space in the kitchen – I don’t remember what I placed up top and cannot even see all the way up there from the ground.

With all the stress and now culture shock setting in, I have two favourite perfumes giving me the much needed comfort and hugs.

Knowing how stressful this would be, I decided several weeks before the move that for the five or six days that it would take to pack, move, stay in a hotel and then move into the house I would be fragrance free.


Once unpacked, I spritzed Shalimar EdP lavishly and was in scented heaven. It has grounded me when I found myself wanting to whimper in a corner.


At night I require an extra dose of sugar and reach for Spiriteuse Double Vanille which sends me off to dreamland with its wonderful boozy vanilla cloud.

All in all, I am excited about the adventure and am looking forward to discovering new places and meeting new people. The Dutch are some of the friendliest people I have ever met. People smile and are willing to help us and most go out of their way when we explain that we are newly implanted foreigners in their country.

Here are a few pictures of the last night in Vienna and then my first impressions living in this vibrant city. If you are interested, you can follow my Instagram (vienna_living) to catch a glimpse of my latest discoveries.










16 thoughts on “Moving: Vienna To Rotterdam 2016

  1. Oh my goodness, Sandra. What a trooper you are! I can’t believe the moving guys abandoned you like that.
    It will take time to get your bearings and find the places you can rely on, but you’ll get there before long.
    Great, comforting perfume choices for a stressful time.
    I wish you all the very best in the Land of the Giants!


    • Hi Tara, It is so much better already. We had the best New Years Eve in years. And I am truly enjoying living in the suburbs and riding a bike! I will however remain short, no matter how much stretching I do. Thank you for reading. Sandra xoxo


  2. Holy Cow!! Yes, the Dutch are big. And they love their mayo, it´s everywhere. But I promise you, you are gonna love the Netherlands. The light that will flood into you life now will priceless. Only then will you see how dark Vienna is. Big hugs. xxxx


  3. WOW Sandra,
    those bastard removalists. I hope you didn’t pay them. ArseHoles.
    Glad to see you’re in the new digs though. Hope you love Netherlands.
    Portia xxx


    • Hi Portia! Thanks for the support. I complained mildly and they are reimbursing us a little bit. All in all a smooth transition. Now the fun begins with all the exploring. I am sure we will love it here. Sandra xoxo


  4. Hi Sandra, welcome to the Netherlands! I grew up very close to and went to high school in Rotterdam, and my late mother’s family were deeply rooted there. My mother lived through the bombing of Rotterdam during WW2, you will see the Zadkine statue “man without a heart” referring to that I am sure. So to see a pic of the Rotterdam city hall and the Laurenskerk brings me back to my youth. I live in the middle of the Netherlands, and rarely are in Rotterdam, so I don’t think a perfumista meet will be possible in the near future. I have never shopped perfume in Rotterdam, but I think Lianne Tio is a nice perfumery to visit. I also recommend an outing to the Hague in spring, it is such a lovely city and with a bit of luck you will see our prime minister cycling by.
    Are you in the Hillegersberg area of Rotterdam? Lots of luck settling in the small country with the tallest people in the EU!


    • Thank you Hamamelis for the warm welcome. You grew up in a great city. I have been reading up on the history of Rotterdam and the Netherlands in general and I look forward to exploring my surroundings. Thank you for the perfume and the Hague tips. We took a short break to Delft and loved it. Yes, we are in the Schiebroek-Hillegersberg area – love it with all the parks. Sandra xo


  5. Thank you for sharing your adventure and the beautiful photos. I’m fascinated that you gave up fragrance during your hotel stay. I think that is such a genius thing to do. Now your scent memories restart in a new place, and Shalimar + SDV make a landmark in your olfactory memory. Marvelous.

    I have Dutch great-grandparents and hope someday to visit Arnhem where they lived before coming to the US. Despite my ancestors’ height I am barely 5 feet tall. I happen to live in a house where I need a stepstool to reach the middle and top shelves in my kitchen cupboards.

    Good for a smile:


    • Thanks Tiffanie! Stepstools are ingenious and I am forever grateful for having several. Great website too. I hope you make it over here for a visit soon as I am sure you will love it. Sandra xo


  6. Good on you Sandra , you moved countries and cities over the Xmas period ten out of ten!! Lol.. will look forward to your discoveries in Rotterdam and the Netherlands in general the land of the tall!
    Of course beautiful fragrance choices Sandra. Hugs to you Sandra and hello to your beautiful family xx😘


    • Hi Anna Maria! Great to see you. We are all feeling quite settled and we just have to get over the first day of school tomorrow. Sending hugs back to all of you. Sandra xoxo


  7. Hah, I know what you mean with “the Dutch are tall” – I usually below their mirror level in bathrooms… Then again, I’m happy you find the Dutch polite and helpful – I’ve always thought their directness borders on rude… 😉
    I hope you’ll be familiar and happy with all things new quickly – latest when I come to see you 😀 Big hug from under the snow !


    • Hey there! So glad you have also experienced this. your comment about their directness makes me laugh. Touch wood – I have yet to experience it, but I am sure it will come. 😆Can’t wait for you to come and visit. Sending lots of hugs to you. Sandra xoxo


  8. Oh this resonates so much. Just moved to Chile on my own for a job and am in temporary lodgings for now. People too are really nice. But finding a new routine, new comfort food and stores plus getting by in another language make me want to hide somewhere with lots of perfume and chocolate… Lots of it 😀


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