Friday, January 04, 2008

Beste Wensen

One of the things Dutch people do the first time they see you after the new year is shake your hand (or kiss you three times) and say, "Beste wensen," or "Best wishes." It was a little shocking my first year here. No one "warned" me that it would happen. I was working as a volunteer at the nursing home that year and it seemed really strange. Some people just won't do anything else until they have shaken your hand properly and said, "Best wishes for the new year." The year I was at the large company it was strange as well. People would see me for the first time in late January and have to do it.

Of course no one warns you because to them it just seems normal, polite. It's like the shaking of hands at the birthday party. It's just done. No questions.

This picture was taken at the British Museum in London. The great majority of our pictures of London this time were us trying to out "art shot" each other, us one of us trying to catch the other not looking, or pictures in the British museum in low light, which is particularly challenging because our camera isn't the best in low light. (We're getting a new camera soon.)

I was particularly excited to see the India exhibit as we had seen Darjeeling Limited in London for the amazing price of 12 pounds each. So for two tickets, in euros, that's €32.10. In American Dollars that's $47.32. I didn't do the calculations until we were walking away from the ticket counter. My knees buckled and I had to stop and reflect on the moment.

The good news is that when I walked out of the movie, I told Fred it was worth every penny. I told him when he let me pick the movie that it was probably more of an "Andy movie" than a "Fred movie" and I was right. (I went out immediately and bought the soundtrack.) In NYC, when movies were ten dollars a pop, I used to have a system where I'd say, "Well, if I'd have paid six dollars, I would have felt like it was enough." Or "That was more of a seven dollar movie." When it's off the ten scale, it's a little difficult to do. Twenty four pounds was ridiculous (I paid for the movie), but it was money well spent. It's a really beautiful movie and I enjoyed the story. It made me want to go to India and when we do, I want to take a train trip like that. It also made me reflect on my siblings. That's a trip that will never happen. The three of us alone in India? Now that would be a movie.

The India exhibit was a little disappointing. I wanted more color, like the movie. Shouldn't all of life be like a beautiful movie? Still, I enjoyed the images and statues, which were mostly stone and wood. Fred bought two books in Hinduism, one of which he has already read. Hinduism is sort of confusing and there's a lot to know.

So best wishes for the new year. I've already started on some fingerless gloves. They are the gloves I was going to knit for Sally. Now they're going to the son of a good friend of hers who was born on Sally's 40th birthday. It sort of feels like obligatory knitting, which doesn't thrill me, but it makes me think of Sally, which is always nice. Plus, I'm trying some things which are fun to do. Always learning, that's my style. I'll post pictures in a day or two.

Beste Wensen!


Eric & Tony said...

Beste Wensen!
Great FOs. I need to try the oolhaas. So cool!
I hope all that Rolfing is paying off. If I was paying someone to pull on me, there would be more than one groin session (and it wouldn't take an hour.)

Crafty Andy said...

Beste Wensen!

To YOu my Friend!