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zondag 24 november 2013

Snapshots of Maastricht, capital in the Meuse valley

After almost 10 years living in Spain I came back; not because I was born here. I saw life in a village a bit further to the north, but I lived in Maastricht before: the capital of the Dutch province Limburg; at least over 2000 years old. Ancient; an area filled with Celts at the time the Romans invaded Europe and Julius Caesar finally managed to defeat the local tribes.

Maastricht has history, but besides it is situated at a unique geographical location; forms a triangle with the German city Aachen and the Belgian town Liege. It’s a cross-border place which gives it an international gloom, and at the same time it is that small that it cannot step outside the impression of a village. It never will be a city; even not since it has an academic hospital, university and airport shared with Aachen. Some towns never escape their rural origin; Maastricht is one of them...

Is it because of a mentality, so old that it hardly can be changed anymore? Too much aware of its historical value; as if it lives backwards. Don’t get me wrong: I do not mean it in a negative way. Maybe it has to be like this; maybe some places have so much history, were so important to themselves in the past that they always will ware a self-reflecting stamp. It is not because of a lack of culture; from this there is more than enough in town and the area. It is more like a reflection of wisdom which makes it no longer necessary to compete the future: a happy lazy feeling, a bit slow as well, that characterizes especially the Limburgian people who live here for ages...

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