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Visiting friends we had neglected for far too long, the occasion being a birthday, which also gave us the opportunity to catch up on missed wedding, housewarming and welcoming new baby parties. All on a bit short notice, so we ended up flying in Saturday morning at 7 AM and flying out on Sunday afternoon at 4 PM, through Heathrow, which is Not Recommended. Very nice to meet up with a slew of old friends again though.

It had been over a year since the last time I'd visited the UK and as always it struck me ahow harsh and hard it looked. So much seeming neglect of public spaces, combined with relentless commercial messages everywhere, as well as uberpresent surveillance and security measures, like CCTV cameras prominent on pedestrian crossings! All made me feel uncomfortable everytime I was outside.

I have the horrible feeling that this is the future that is awaiting the Netherlands if we're not careful.

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martin_wisse

April 2009

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