Ginneken Walk September 14th, Breda


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by Vanessa L.

On Thursday a number of us dusted off our raincoats and armed with umbrellas joined the IWC Ginneken Walk.  Our guide was Jan from the Gilde De Baronie.  He took us on a colourful journey which he illustrated with stories of residents, past and present and historical places.   Here is a tiny taster of the tales we were told….

Ginneken was once an independent village but is now part of Breda, since being annexed in 1942.  The area became popular with tourists from Den Haag and Amsterdam around 1900.  Its vicinity to the Mastbos and the Mark valley made it an extremely beautiful place to visit and relax.  Some hotels and small B&Bs were established served by a busy network of horse drawn trams bringing visitors into the village area from the station.  One of the favourite destinations for the wealthy ladies of that era who arrived on the 5 cent pony tram was the house of a dubious, quack healer based in Ginneken who paraded up and down the village streets in a long, flamboyant blue gown and Alexander McQueen style shoes with springs in the heels!

Have you ever heard bells ringing on a misty morning walking by the Devil’s Bridge over the Mark?  Legend has it that sometime around 1300, lovers Catherina van Gaveren and Walter van Ulvenhout rushed to Ginneken Laurentius church after she was rescued from incarceration in a monastery to marry.  Unfortunately, the bells in the tower had not been blessed and the devil let them fall, crushing the couple and priest during the ceremony.   Afterwards, he carried the bells and dropped them in the Mark where some claim they have heard them ringing.

As the heavens opened once more we headed off to Zin for lunch and chance to chat and warm up.

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Singaporean cooking class May 18, Bavel

by Silvana L.

62 years ago I was born in Singapore, where I lived with my family for 6 years. I can still remember the colours and smells of the fruit, vegetables and flowers on display at the markets there. It all came back to me when I stepped into the kitchen of Renee and saw what was cooking for lunch .

It was a walk through memory lane. Together with other members of the IWC and with the support of Renee, Siew Kien and Doreen, we were taught how to cook a lunch that consisted of: Curry Chicken, Mixed vegetables stir fry and Vietnamese spring rolls. I can assure you all that folding rice paper isn’t as easy as it looks! Everything was well organised and instructions were given with humour and clarity and it felt like coming home .

Recently I made myself a Singapore Sling and I imagined I was sitting in the lounge of the Raffles Hotel…. and with the words of W. Somerset Maugham: the essence of the beautiful is the unity in variety, I say Cheers to the Singaporean way of cooking! It was lovely!

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Candle Making Workshop, March 30th, Breda

by Avril M.

The Candle Making Workshop held at the Baker this morning was attended by 10 members of the International Women’s Club.
We were treated to a free coffee and some tasty honey cake while Renee’s friend Ria demonstrated the making of beeswax candles from thin sheets of beeswax with a honeycomb motif.
We were each given a knotted piece of candlewick and then used a sheet of beeswax to roll around the wick to make a candle. The results were all different, like long tapers or shorter candles.
Ria then produced silicon moulds with more wicks and members were able to choose and prepare a mould. A huge pan of hot beeswax was put on the table and we poured the molten wax into our moulds. The resulting candles were perfect and everyone was pleased with the result.
Ria also explained how to dip candles, which is a very long process.
As Ria works with her own beehives, she also had honey and other interesting products for sale for any members, yum!!! If only we had some munt thee…….
The Workshop was a great success and the members who participated had an enjoyable morning. Thanks go out to all!!
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