corders in the hague

It's like having the Corders round for dinner - except the kids don't smash stuff and Mike doesn't drink all your booze. And when you're bored you can get rid of us with a mouse click rather than having to start tidying up the house.

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Location: The Hague, Netherlands

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Red army marches on, again

Well, the Russians didn't read their script.
Basel was totally full of Dutch fans yesterday - about 100,000 to add to the city's usual population of 160,000. Bars ran dry, fans leapt off high bridges into the fast-flowing Rhine - if the cops in the barge holding hooking the drunks out of the water missed, I suppose they'd just keep on floating until they got to Rotterdam and then clamber out.
It was one huge party until the match started and it soon became clear the Russians were going to win. Ruud van Nistelrooy managed to make it interesting by scoring a late equalizer, but the Russians were so much better than the Dutch in extra time it was almost embarrassing.
I haven't been into Basel today, but I guess there are a lot of hungover, depressed Dutch fans lying under trees. Meanwhile, my photographer has disappeared, with our car, into the city with his wife leaving me in a very, very crappy hotel looking our of my window at what appears to be a market place for stolen cars on the rooftop carpark of a furniture store that dominates the industrial park that houses the hotel.
Basel, on the other hand, is gorgeous. Floating down the Rhine is a local pastime. I spent the afternoon before the game with a colleague sitting on a bar's terrace built over the river. The bar was equipped with showers and a ladder/pontoon construction that meant people who leapt into the river upstream could get out, clean off whatever chemical filth had stuck to them in the water and then have a beer. An incredibly civilized set up. We resisted the temptation to have a dip - the water was 15 degrees and flowing very fast and the bar served very good coffee.
So I'm here for a few days yet. Semifinal against either Spain or Italy on Thursday in Vienna and final on Sunday if necessary. I HAVE to get some laundry done.


Blogger Hong Kong Merretts said...

Looks like they've all been Tangoed. Not a good look. Where is the next stop? And does it involve another Phileas Fogg-esque train journey?

12:09 AM  
Blogger corders said...

I'm still in Basel. Next stop Vienna, probably by car.

5:26 AM  
Blogger corders said...

I'm still in Basel. Next stop Vienna, probably by car.

5:27 AM  

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