FIVB World Championships Notebook - Day 7

Cycling

Bicycles parked outside a building in Nijmegen, Netherlands on September 20, 2022. Cycling is more common in Netherlands than driving.

Photo credit: Samuel Gacharira | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • The tickets are purchased online via a cashless card system.

In Apeldoorn, the Netherlands

No fuel attendants here

*****

The gas stations have an efficient cashless card system. As opposed to the Kenyan way where we have fuel attendants, car owners actually step out of their cars and fuel by themselves. Once you insert the card into the machine at the gas station, it ‘holds’ the entire amount in your card momentarily to allow you to fuel. Then after you have fueled, it deducts your bill from the card and ejects the card. Immediately you get a message on your phone then you can leave.

Dogs come with a huge bill

*****

Most Dutch people prefer keeping dogs as pets. However, it’s expensive owning a dog since you have to register it with the government. You are required to pay a certain tax on a monthly basis for owning a dog and authorities pass by homes to confirm if the dog owners have registered theirs and remitted taxes. Here’s the interesting bit though. Every dog owner ensures he carries a garbage bag with him/her when he goes out for a stroll with his dog. If the dog defecates on the street you are required to clean and empty it on the bins or else the police will fine you.

Subways are the most common means of public transport
*****

The tickets are purchased online via a cashless card system. The ticket has a specific code that allows you to open the gates and leave the station when you reach your destination. The train arrives at the exact time indicated on your ticket and allows passengers at least one minute to board and alight. And the WIFI works perfectly throughout the trip. Nairobi governor Johnson Sakaja should tour Netherlands in his bid to decongest the capital. Subways, albeit expensive to set up, could offer a lasting solution to Nairobi’s traffic.

It’s easy to identify student quarters
*****

Unlike Nairobi where the noisiest residential buildings would suggest that students live around that area, it’s easier to identify student quarters in the Netherlands. The neighbourhoods with the most bicycles at the parking bay have a high probability of having students as their occupants. University Students prefer cycling to and from school to save on fare.

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