Reading Dutch

We spent the first day of the year 2017 in our pajamas, never left the house. We learned halfway through the day that Faro had strep throat as well, and so I probably have it too. In hindsight I think we practically asked for colds by going to the Aquarium and the Museum of Science during Christmas vacation week with all the snotty nosed children of Boston and surrounding areas. It’s good business for the makers of tissues. I buy the nice soft ones in bulk. Every few feet there is a box.

In my mind I had all these things I wanted to do as the end of this vacation nears but I have no energy to do anything other than reading. I have been completely enchanted by a Dutch writer, by Annejet van der Zijl. She has extensively researched and chronicled the lives of interesting and mostly Dutch and very colorful people who did amazing things, socially and art wise. Some of these people were alive and well (others not so well) at a time that I was trying to be a good student and color between the lines, preparing for earning a living. These people did not. They were either born into money (and usually squandered it) or married well, and when the money was gone they just survived. They certainly did not color between the lines. They partied a lot and managed through ups and downs, sometimes in a haze of alcohol and other stimulants. All of them, the ones that died young and the ones that lived beyond 50 became famous through their writing and illustrating the stories I read as a young adult.

It is easy now to give in to my addiction to this writer. With a few key strokes I can download her books from a Dutch book website and then read them on my iPad. I haven’t read this many Dutch books in more than a decade. It is too bad these books are written in Dutch. I have to enjoy them alone as there is no one around me here who can read them.

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