Yesterday’s dinner came out of the garden, except for the Boca Burgers; the night before it came out of the sea. On Wednesday, when I arrived home, tired and hungry, Axel jumped in his boat and checked his five lobster traps, then returned with one keeper. The lobsters are moving away from shore and something else is eating the bait, so this may have been the last gratis lobster of the summer.

Last night was a land-dinner night. While Axel was completing our taxes, a dragged out and painful chore, I clipped the kale and dug up one plant of potatoes, providing more than enough for the two of us. The leftover kale and potatoes will be transformed into one of my favorite Dutch dishes, Boerenkool, a winter dish that comforts as the evenings get cooler and the nights colder.

I arrived at work yesterday morning to the sad news that one of our Dutch princes has died. It was a blip on the American news scene, not important here, but somehow touched me deeply. Not because he is a prince – princes always die, usually in battle or devoured by dragons – but I remember his birth and I grieve as a mother. He died after 18 months in coma after having been buried in an avalanche, deprived of oxygen for 25 minutes. This happened in Lech (Austria), the royal family’s ski resort of choice.

Sometime in the early 70s I found myself there, resting on the side of the slope next to the royals, including our then queen Juliana who remarked to me that my ski boot clips were loose. I remember blushing and being all flummoxed, the queen talked to me, imagine! With the news of Friso’s passing all these memories came flooding back.

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August 2013
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