Den Haag City Hall
Another early start today, exhibiting and pitching at Cyber Security Week in The Hague. We had some really good conversations so it was a worthwhile day. Lots to follow up. The UK ambassador was able to join the delegation today, promoting Britain in Europe instead of dining with the architect of our impending separation.
This evening we had (another) reception, this one at City Hall (pictured) which turned out to be rather an impressive venue. Afterwards I went to dinner at a French Bistro recommended to us by one of our Uber drivers. Onion soup and Beef Bourguignon. Delicious.
Walking back to my hotel it struck me what a contrast The Hague is with San Antonio. Both are seats of government which I came to with little knowledge and no preconceptions. San Antonio wasn’t unpleasant, but I was glad to leave and I won’t be that sorry if I don’t return. The Hague is an undiscovered gem – I've never really heard anything about any town or city in The Netherlands other than Amsterdam, but The Hague is beautiful. Grandiose public architecture (ancient and modern) mixed with crowded historic backstreets. Wide thoroughfares dominated by trams, cyclists and pedestrians. Lots of welcoming bars, cafes and restaurants. A pleasant climate for dining outside even in late September. Locals who welcome me as a visitor when I speak English (rather than openly resenting my ignorance – naming no other European countries in particular). Museums, galleries, beautiful open parks, and a coast that looks from the maps like it is lined with beaches, although I haven’t had time to explore that far. I shall genuinely be sorry to leave tomorrow – and I want to come back and explore some more. It’s possibly the only city I have visited in Europe where I have thought “I like this – I could live here”.
For now though, my day has been long and I have been working too hard. Sleep beckons.