Metal, Disco Balls & Belgian Beers: 5 Facts About Me

If you’re on Instagram, you might have seen the hashtag 5 ‘Facts about me’ passing by recently. Users are invited to share 5 personal facts about themselves and then tag other users to do the same. I think it’s a great way to learn more about the person behind the Instagram photos, and got very excited when Natasja of Dutch blog Wat zij zegt invited me to share my #5factsaboutme on Instagram Story. Because not everybody who follows me here is on Instagram, I thought it would be fun to share my 5 facts with you in a blog. Get ready to learn some surprising facts about Dutch Girl!

1. I blame my brother for turning me in a nerd

My original fact number 1 was that I don’t know how Instagram Story really works. Ironically, Natasja first showed me the basics of it when we met last year, but I still haven’t really figured it out yet. However, for this blog post I’d like to share a different fact with you.

I am not ashamed to admit that I’m a big nerd, but I do blame my brother for turning me into one! He is super clever and excels in subjects like maths and chemistry (he’s a chemical engineer), and in his free time fixes computers. He is 9 years older than me and he used to enjoy to offer me maths exercises he had just learned in school himself. Imagine an innocent 6-year old girl working out fractions and solving mathematical equations. Yes, I’m scarred for life…

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This was my life when growing up… (Photo from Shutterstock)

2. I have this inexplicable obsession with disco balls, cowboys and vintage world maps

Disco balls – No idea where my disco ball fetish comes from, but I have several of them in my home. I have little disco balls for the Christmas tree and used them for our wedding decorations. If I see a disco ball hanging from the ceiling in a venue, I need to dance right underneath it and I also have quite a disco ball photo archive!

Cowboys – As for my cowboy obsession, it has nothing to do with sexual fantasies. Best to get that out of the way immediately! However, I do find the image of outlaw cowboys as often depicted in Westerns extremely cool. I especially like the idea of eating white beans from an enamel cup and think it’s quite funny hipster cafés serve their beans this way nowadays.

The film Borat, starring Sacha Baron Cohen, plays a big role in my cowboy fascination as well. I went to see it in the cinema with colleagues at the time. We thought his line ‘Are you a cowboy?’ was hilarious and it soon became a catchphrase in the office. One of my colleagues and I kept using it and about 12 years later, we still call it each other cowboy. (See fact number 1 again. Yes, I am a big nerd).

Vintage world maps – I still find it incredible to think that people went on dangerous explorations hundreds of years ago without any of the sophisticated technology we have today. Although sometimes cartographers got the shapes of countries and continents completely wrong, they were pretty accurate most of the time. I love visiting map exhibitions and could spend hours studying all the little details and illustrations on them. They show us so much about the folklore and beliefs of people at the time. Fun fact is that lots of the early respected cartographers were actually Dutch. If you happen to be in Amsterdam this year, do pay a visit to the Scheepvaart Museum where you can see the extraordinary 17th-century 2 x 3 metre world map by Blaeu, Master Cartographer of the Golden Age.

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Fact #2: my love for disco balls, cowboys and vintage maps (Photos from Shutterstock)

3. I love heavy beers, especially Belgian ones

Perhaps not so much of a revelation, but very important to me! Although the craft beer scene in the UK is ever-expanding, I still haven’t found local beverages that could replace my beloved Belgian, Dutch and German beers. Fortunately, many shops here sell them, but I tend to stuff my suitcase with bottles of beer when flying back to the UK as they’re much cheaper in the Netherlands.

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This collection of Belgian beers makes my mouth water! (Photo from Shutterstock)

4. People are always surprised when they find out I’m into metal and heavy electronic music

I started to get into rock music in the 90s. Starting with bands such as Nirvana, Hole, Pearl Jam, Faith no More and Rage Against the Machine, I quickly moved on to heavier bands such as Fear Factory, Machine Head and Strapping Young Lad. I went to my first metal concert about 20 years ago when I was 17 years old. At the time metal concerts were typically very masculine events and I was usually one of the very few female visitors. I stood out even more so as there weren’t that many people of colour in the audience either. Thankfully times have changed!

Rocktober

5. I’d love to visit Iceland one day, but I can’t stand the cold

Iceland is right at the top of my travel wish list. It’s not far away and hubby and I actually have some quite some friends there. However, since I wasn’t built for cold weather (and temperatures over 25 degrees for that matter), I’m truly scared that I’d be too cold to enjoy myself. Perhaps I just need to invest more in thermal clothing…

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Hopefully this will be me one day! (Photo from Shutterstock)

I hope you enjoyed these little fun facts about me. I’d love it you’d share one or more facts about YOU with me in a comment below!
Zarina xx