It's been said, that Holland is the most densely populated country in the world. Even more so than Japan. It can be hard to believe this of course when you're cycling through the wonderful flat countryside. But the proof of this can be easily verified, by taking a quick Saturday trip to Ikea.
No where is Hollands dense population better represented than a relatively cheap furniture store on an off work day.
It's not the density that bothers me though, generally speaking its fair that Holland is a very small country with a lot of people...it's the rather strange Dutch quirk, that they have absolutely no sense of spatial awareness. As soon as you get into a crowd of Dutch people they have this "never give an inch", attitude.
We Brits tend to be a little deferential, if we are in someones way we move, we check behind us before we stop dead, etc. In other words we are always aware that our presence in a particular space may impact on someone else's progress and we move. No problems!
It's just that simple. They weave around, walk (slowly) 5 abreast, they stop dead in their tracks, they think nothing of walking right in front of you, or blocking your clear route down an aisle.
Its a strange thing...Of course even stranger is the variation of looks you get when you say "excuse me" as you try to get past them. Ranging as they do from horror and disgust, to sympathy for the clearly deranged foreign person who can't negotiate his way around.
It's probably the only Dutch trait I find annoying. I like the bluntness, I like the openness, I like the honesty..but for pity sake....get out of the bloody way will ya!!