10 things you probably didn’t know about the Dutch and the Netherlands



Cheese market in AlkmaarI lived in the Netherlands for a couple of years, and had a Dutch boyfriend for almost 4 years, so I know quite a bit about this quirky country and its unusual inhabitants (and I mean that in a good way). I’m going to share some pearls of wisdom about the Dutch and their country that I gleaned during my stay, and limit it to 10 because I could easily write 100 and bore you to death. Hope you enjoy.

1. Holland and the Netherlands are not synonymous. Holland is just one section of the Netherlands, largely the western coastal region, including Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Haarlem, Leiden and the Hague. However, other famous Dutch cities like Utrecht, Groningen, Maastricht, Den Bosch and Leeuwarden are *not* in Holland.

2. The Dutch love sprinkles on toast. I’m talking the sprinkles kids put on ice cream, but Dutch adults put it on bread. For breakfast. It’s called “hagelslag”, and De Ruijter makes the best kinds. Another variant, “muisjes” – little mice – are candied anise seeds; also delicious on buttered toast. You can get either pink, female, or blue, male, varieties. I’m not joking.

3. The Dutch will only eat one hot meal a day. If you arrive at a Dutch friend’s house around dinnertime, they might ask, “Heb je al warm gegeten?” which means “Have you eaten something hot already?” If you had a hot lunch, your friend will prepare a (cold) sandwich for you for dinner. You can not eat 2 hot meals per day.

4. Dutch “g” “ch” and “r” are all pronounced more or less the same (although the Dutch insist they’re different) – a harsh, guttural “kh” sound (like you’re clearing phlegm from your throat). So the word “gracht” (canal) combines all three “kh” sounds in one word…that sounds really, really awful: “khkhakht.” This is why “Grolsch” (the beer) sounds like “Khkhols”, not “grolsh”.

5. The Dutch love speaking English. See #4. Seriously, they all speak perfect, although heavily-accented, English. They will pronounce “idea” eye-DEE, and they will resist pronouncing it with 3 syllables in English, no matter how many times you correct them. On a related note, “I have no idea” is “geen idee”, which sounds a little like “rainy day” when pronounced correctly.

6. The Dutch loathe the Germans. Some pretend they don’t, some are openly proud of it, but they all look down on them. An example: I was walking along a beach (Schevengingen) with a Dutch guy, and we saw a guy furiously digging a hole in the sand. My Dutch friend sneered. I asked him why the guy was digging a hole. He said, “Because he’s a dumb German.” I pressed, but what for? Is he building a castle or something? “No, he’s just a stupid German! He can’t help it! The morons just love digging holes for no reason!”
Another story. A Norwegian friend flew down to Germany, rented a car there and drove to Rotterdam. He had parked on the street, and a cop approached him while he was in his car, and told him, in German, that he wasn’t allowed to park there and began writing him a ticket. When he looked at his driver’s license and saw he was Norwegian, he tore up the ticket, said, “Park wherever you want” and “Welcome to Holland!”, all in English.

Rows of tulips7. The country is drenched with rain year round, but the Dutch never use umbrellas. They use raincoats and rain “suits”, but they never use umbrellas (too hard to ride your bicycle with one; plus, it’s *really* windy all the time). The Dutch will happily put up with wet faces and heads. The “wet look” is permanently “in” there.
Another oddity is no matter how much it rains and floods temporarily, all the water’s gone in about 20 minutes. I think it’s because the ground is mostly sand; the water just drains away. The cement blocks used as a road surface are taken out every few years, the sandy ground is pounded flat with this sand-pounding-machine (seriously) and then they replace the cement blocks.

8. The Dutch have strange snacking habits. They eat fries (what they’re famous for) but they’re often drenched in mayonnaise or pindasaus (basically spicy peanut butter). They also love frikandel (all the scary remnant parts of animals they can’t sell elsewhere, pressed into a vaguely hotdog shape, and then deep-fried until dark brown; yes, it looks like a piece of shit), kroketten (deep-fried lumps of dough wrapped around meat, that look like dried-up old turds), and cheese souffles, which are greasy but I have to admit, pretty damn tasty. The most famous purveyor of this junk is a chain called Febo; you buy everything out of an automat. They’re everywhere, especially inside train stations, and open late when you’re coming out of the clubs at 3am.

9. You heard about the Dutch using free bicycles provided by the government? Nope – that’s the Danish. The Dutch love using bicycles (called ‘fietsen’, pronounced FEETS-un), but in every city, theft is rife and you have to use 2-3 locks to prevent even a piece of shit bike from being stolen. This is why the average Dutch person doesn’t spend more than $50 for a bike – it’ll eventually get stolen. Junkies in the Amsterdam red light district will sell you a bike for 10 euros (25 guilders before the euro changeover), but be careful; if you buy one and a cop sees you, you go to jail.
There are specially-designated “fietspaden” (bike paths) all over the country, and pedestrians can not walk on them. If you hear a bell ringing–that’s how the Dutch tell people to get out of the way–then pay attention! You’re about to get mowed over.

10. The Dutch are not big potheads. Despite it being legal there (along with “magic mushrooms”), you almost never see a Dutch person getting high. You see TONS of foreigners – Brits, Americans, Germans, etc – smoking out in Dutch “coffee shops” (“coffee shop” means marijuana; “cafe” means coffee, so pay attention to what the establishment calls itself), but it’s pretty rare to see a Dutch person there. The legalization is tied to a very Dutch concept called “gedoogbeleid” which is difficult to translate but means permissiveness-because-there-are-bigger-fish-to-fry. The Dutch live below sea level, so they have plenty of dams & dikes keeping the water out. To relieve pressure on this system, a little water always trickles through – that’s okay as long as they can keep the floods out. This is often why the Dutch are said to not care about trivial drugs like marijuana and magic mushrooms – so they can focus on hard drugs like cocaine and meth (which are very much illegal).

There’s my list. Let me add something that I found in a tourist brochure given out at the Schiphol (SKHIP-hull, not Shiffol!) airport, which I think totally captures the Dutch attitude (I’m paraphrasing because I don’t have it here):

  • Please keep in mind that not all of the women you see in the windows in the Red Light District are really women.
  • If something bad happens to you, please find a policeman/policewoman and explain the situation to us. Please do not be embarrassed – we have really seen it all before. You couldn’t possibly shock us.
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582 Comments »

  1. I just wanted to mention that the fries are more a thing of Belgium, not the Dutch.

    You missed out one important part about the Dutch and eating culture: they love having “boterhammen met kaas” (loafs of bread with cheese) topped with peanut butter or jam.

    It’s a great story, keep up the good job and maybe see you again in the Netherlands.

    Michelangelo

    Comment by Michelangelo van Dam — July 31, 2008 @ 8:40 am

  2. Michelangelo: You’re right; patat has its origins in Belgium, but they’re still ridiculously popular in NL.

    I definitely left out some of the other Dutch culinary items like boterhammen met kaas, met ham, poffertjes, stroopwaffels, tosti’s, etc. and my FAVORITE: komijnekaas! (I’ve been able to find it here every now and then.)

    Love the Netherlands – look forward to visiting it again.

    Comment by JM — July 31, 2008 @ 10:19 am

  3. Nice

    Comment by nice — July 31, 2008 @ 11:41 am

  4. Erhm, i’m from Holland and i’m quite sure there’s no difference between The Netherlands and Holland. The zone you refer to is called ‘De randstad’.

    Comment by Jape — August 29, 2008 @ 11:31 am

  5. I hate to have to do this, you being a Dutchman and all, but de Randstad only refers to the the cluster of Amsterdam, the Hague, Rotterdam and Utrecht (the last *not* in Holland) and their surrounding areas.

    Holland is composed of the provinces of Noord Holland and Zuid Holland, and most definitely does not include Utrecht, Groningen, Leeuwarden, etc.

    Substantial overlap but not the same things.

    Comment by JM — August 29, 2008 @ 12:21 pm

  6. Well, i suppose you’re right. Maybe you should add an item about the poor education over here.

    Comment by Jape — August 29, 2008 @ 12:31 pm

  7. Haha, I would, but that would be terribly hypocritical (I’m American).

    Comment by JM — August 29, 2008 @ 12:35 pm

  8. And the Dutch are notoriously anal, as the last couple of posts prove.

    Comment by ubidubi — August 29, 2008 @ 12:42 pm

  9. What’s up with all the Dutch not knowing their own country? Their education is truly really, really poor. I once had to do the same to some exchange student named Amcke, she thought she was really smart. But she had no idea Holland was not the same as the Netherlands, even though she was Dutch.
    But then again, it may just be because I’m German and thus superior.

    Comment by I hate Amcke — August 29, 2008 @ 12:54 pm

  10. Okay, I’m a little biased. I’m Belgian, living just across the dutch border. Let’s get some things clear. First: fries are a Belgian thing. There is no such thing as GOOD dutch fries. I’m not going to say we invented them. Go to Belgium and ask a local about a GOOD frietkot (as we call them). Success guaranteed. Second. Holland is NOT The Netherlands. Those who say it is, are the real ‘Holland’ dutch. Stay away from them. (well, most of them…) But DO visit Friesland, Noord-Brabant, Drenthe, Limburg (a favorite!), … Third. Good beer? Just a couple of miles south…

    Comment by Bram — August 29, 2008 @ 1:21 pm

  11. Well, number 6 would certainly explain a lot. My former boss is Dutch (and spoke with a heavy accent, ja?) and every time I wore the ‘Germany’ T-shirt I bought at EPCOT, he gave me merciless grief. I expect some of that comes from being occupied during WWII…(quite possible he was old enough to remember).
    Thanks for a great post

    Comment by Phred — August 29, 2008 @ 1:51 pm

  12. Wikipedia knows all (and if not, correct it!)
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holland

    Comment by BK — August 29, 2008 @ 2:45 pm

  13. Hey , I’m Mexican and i want to say your article was superfluous.

    Can’t wait to go there. I’ve been in Europe before, but I’ve never stayed for living on the Neads, it seems to be a pretty good life experience… maybe I will travel there next year.

    It seems the only problem is the language.

    Comment by Esteban — August 29, 2008 @ 3:44 pm

  14. Please give more – I have Dutch friends – this is an insight to them!!! 😀

    Comment by Maggie — August 29, 2008 @ 4:17 pm

  15. What about droppies?

    Comment by Gary — August 29, 2008 @ 4:44 pm

  16. The sprinkles were noteworthy on my voyage to Amsterdam.
    Great article~

    Comment by Nanook — August 29, 2008 @ 4:52 pm

  17. This article is full of B.S. Thumbs down.

    Comment by kasssoufle — August 29, 2008 @ 5:47 pm

  18. what about the pancakes! When I lived in Amsterdam i could not get enough. Also, going to a dutch birthday party is one of the most awkward things in the world if you don’t know ‘the rules’.

    Comment by MissingNL — August 29, 2008 @ 5:55 pm

  19. Fascinating stuff.

    The thing that struck me most about Amsterdam, last time I was there, (August Bank Holiday 2005) while sitting out on the pavement somewhere near the Dam, and getting very pleasantly stoned, was “Where are the sirens?”

    Actually this train of thought was triggered by a siren. I suddenly realised it was the first siren I’d heard since we arrived about 5 hours earlier. This was about half ten on a Friday night in a European town with a population of about half a million(?). If I’d been in ANY British town of more than one fifth that population at that time, the evening would have be a continuous chorus of sirens.

    From Friday night to Monday Night on a very hot weekend (which meant that there were a lot of people on the streets and out late) in Amsterdam, I heard just 5 sirens. I have no idea whether that is typical, whether it’s due to some special anti noise laws they have or what. But the impression I got was that it reflected the low number of incidents which justified a siren in the first place. It was certainly impressive.

    Apart from the stolen bikes, have you any idea of the relative crime rates in NL (v UK) and are you aware of any good sources of data. My working hypothesis is that Cannabis – when it’s not treated psychotically by the State – reduces rather than increases overall crime and Amsterdam is a living experiment to test that empirically. But I can’t seem to find a definitive data source…

    Comment by Harry Stottle — August 29, 2008 @ 5:56 pm

  20. hi
    im not dutch but i life in holland for over 10 years (i´m 13)
    um they changed the frikandel they dont put any cow intestins and oher rests in it animore mostly i’ts jjust pig in it so you dont have to worry

    you forgot to ad that pannekoekenhuizen “pankakehouses”
    are veryvery popular

    and the education is very we compared to in america ^^
    and holland is the same as the netherlands
    de fries “patat” are not detched in mayonase

    Comment by chloe — August 29, 2008 @ 6:07 pm

  21. i’m french and english

    Comment by chloe — August 29, 2008 @ 6:09 pm

  22. i couldve sworn marijuana and shrooms were illegal, but the authorities just didnt care…

    Comment by james — August 29, 2008 @ 7:04 pm

  23. they make a misery to indonesian… thousand miles away from they are, now…
    http://tinyurl.com/5syzsu for 350 years of time…
    looting, torturing….
    http://tinyurl.com/oy58g
    something that you SHOULD NOT forget!

    Comment by jerky_holland — August 29, 2008 @ 7:27 pm

  24. This was a really interesting read. So nice to find something like this about a country I didn’t know much about.

    Comment by Rhonda — August 29, 2008 @ 8:18 pm

  25. I’m dutch-Indonesian (born in Canada) please explain further the “issue” with Indonesia….My Oma never mentioned any racism towards her.

    Comment by Lauren — August 29, 2008 @ 9:28 pm

  26. I’m married to a Dutch gal. They do like their drop (licorice). The average Dutch person eats five pounds of it a year, but my sweetie eats about twenty. You’re right about animosity toward Germans. Many familys were affected badly by German attrocities during the occupation. A visitor to the Netherlands may feel they’ve entered the land of giants. They’re the tallest people on Earth. It’s not unusual to see a six foot two Dutch girl walking down the street in highheel boots.

    Comment by Frank — August 29, 2008 @ 9:41 pm

  27. Well, it seems you don’t know so much about Holland as you claim to do.

    Firstly, hemp (weed, grass, dope, wiet) is NOT legal in the Netherlands. Anyone who has lived in the country long enough knows this. Tourists don’t know this.

    Weed (the stuff sold in the coffee shops) is “tolerated”, but not legal. There is a tolerance amendment in the Opium Act regarding this.

    And secondly, the Dutch don’t “hate” the Germans as you claim. This statement I find very racist. Like with any nationality, it depends on the person not on where they come from.

    Next time, get your facts straight. I found your article not never well written.

    t.

    Comment by tim — August 29, 2008 @ 11:30 pm

  28. What a civilized society.

    Comment by tommy — August 29, 2008 @ 11:54 pm

  29. […] 10 things you didn’t know about the Dutch and the Neterlands […]

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  30. […] things you probably didn’t know about the Dutch and the Netherlands. But now you’re […]

    Pingback by The Fine Art of Eccentricity · Okay, you light it and I’ll hit it with this bat. *BOOM!* AUGH! — August 30, 2008 @ 12:18 am

  31. About the kh (ch/g/r); that’s just their accent; and definitely not the language. In Flanders (that’s the Dutch speaking part of Belgium) we pronounce them quite differently and distinctive, and no horrible kh sounds…
    Although I guess we make are own pronunciation “mistakes” (for my region that would be using the “french r” instead of the “rolling r”, pronouncing double vowels as single and pronouncing the I sound to sharp…)

    And then there’s the slight difference in vocabulary. For example the word “poepen” has quite a different meaning in these two Dutch speaking regions…

    Comment by Lieven — August 30, 2008 @ 1:24 am

  32. I’m really curious why Dutch hate the Germans so much.
    The languages sound so similar…..

    Comment by matelot — August 30, 2008 @ 1:45 am

  33. So, why are ‘patat frites’, originating in Belgium indeed, being called ‘french fries’ by the anglo-saxons?

    Comment by velijn — August 30, 2008 @ 2:55 am

  34. To someone who understood neither German or Dutch it may well sound like American English vs British English, but modern German evolved quite differently and there were constonant and vowel shifts which made words that were otherwise spelt similarly, sound quite different.

    I’d say Dutch is half way between English and German and they all have alot in common – a common example:

    Wasser pronounced ‘vasser’ in German
    Water pronounced ‘vaater’, note the t and long a in dutch.
    Water in english (bless the shocking phonetics, pronounced ‘waugh-ter’, I can’t even begin to explain it.)

    Amusingly the Swiss who speak a form of German sound like they have a Dutch accent to my ears!

    also on point 5) Dutch speaking English – I think their accent is influenced by an American one due to their television consumption – But I suspect their English is more internationally understandable than most spoken by English people in England.

    Also, as for the behaviour of colonial powers in past centuries, can anyone honestly cite an example of perfect behaviour ? The Belgians, Portuguese, French, English, Italians etc all left huge problems in their land-grabbing wake, behaved callously and disenfranchised huge numbers of people. If you’re going to pick on the Dutch at least mention the rest.

    The Dutch are an exceptionally tolerant society now. I haven’t met any truly racist Dutch – there are some more against immigration than others though, and I’m sure there are some burn-them-all racists as well, as you find both types hidden away under every country’s bed.

    Comment by alext — August 30, 2008 @ 3:14 am

  35. The animosity for the Germans comes from a bitter rivalry in soccer. The Germans always win.

    The definition of “Holland” differs from person to person, but oficially it’s the region comprised of Noord Holland and Zuid Holland. Still, no Dutchman is going to tell you off for calling all the the Netherlands “Holland”.

    About the legality of weed: You can sell it, but you are not allowed to grow it.

    Comment by vidar — August 30, 2008 @ 3:17 am

  36. Having had the privilege of staying in a few Dutch homes when holidaying in the Netherlands, I would like to say that all the families ALWAYS had umbrellas(7), and I even managed to ride a bike using one when needed.

    Comment by Brian — August 30, 2008 @ 3:49 am

  37. Never been there before, but you sure give a good picture of it.

    I wasn’t really interested in this country before but now I’ve read your post, I might have a go one of these days.

    Thank you very much for this discovery.

    Comment by axelle akermann (from france) — August 30, 2008 @ 4:26 am

  38. Hi, I’m Dutch, and would like to explain a bit. I really liked this article, because you are mostly very right, and it is interesting to see what other people think of our culture.

    The blue and pink “muisjes” are a tradionally treat, when sprinkled on “beschuit” ( a sort of biscuit, often used as breakfast). When a child is born, the parents often serve “beschuit met muisjes”, and of course, that’s where the colors are for.

    And the reason that the Dutch don’t really like Germans, is that some of them are very rude as tourists. They often refuse to speak anything but German (they exspect the same from you when you are there) , and they are known for digging huge holes at the beach. The “hate” for Germans is also a remnant of WW II for some older people.

    And about the term “Holland”, that is indeed the name of the two western provinces ( Noord-Holland & Zuid-Holland) combined, but most of the people use it as a nickname for the whole Netherlands.

    Comment by Steak — August 30, 2008 @ 5:08 am

  39. Here in Belgium it’s the same, the youth (and I’m one of them) thinks it’s cool to keep shitting on the Germans “to take revenge for the World War”, we all do it in here!

    Comment by belgian brewer — August 30, 2008 @ 5:30 am

  40. hi,
    i wanted to start by complementing you on a very good portrayal of some of the weird dutch customs.
    However I wouldn’t say we hate the Germans. We just have a big grudge against them and it is more of a prejudice really.
    Also i want to thank all the Belgians for their very amusing comments (please stop relating yourself to us and instead find a working government or decide on what language to speak).
    Yah it might have been worth mentioning when our jokes are not based on Germans they are based on Belgians ( because of their extremely low IQ)
    uhm that’s pretty much all i had to say =p

    Comment by lucifertje — August 30, 2008 @ 5:43 am

  41. Well, wait till you hear what Germans think about the Dutch – especially when they see them on the Autobahn!

    But seriously – I’m not sure if the Dutch antagonism toward the Germans is as extreme as you wrote. I often meet Dutch tourists and travellers overhere in Germany and they are all very nice and mostly speak at least some German. I don’t know a single German who speaks as much Dutch. They just laugh at their accents and call them “Käskopp” (Cheeseheads).

    But allow me one positively biased assertion: I think the Dutch people have a really great, sarcastic sense of humour!

    Comment by Dal — August 30, 2008 @ 7:23 am

  42. The practice of tolerating open marijuana use was the same here in London – the attitude being it’s relatively safe, but there are more important things to worry about. Still – the drug is illegal.

    Loved the observations. I have a Dutch boyfriend, and dated another Dutchie last year, visting AMS several times. Not seing things from a tourist’s perspective opened my eyes to certain things: The Dutch DO have a certain ‘side eye’ attitude to the Germans; they have a very dry and offbeat sense of humour, and also, I’m told the attitude to sex is more conservative than it would appear.

    Visitors could be forgiven for thinking that all Dutch people walk around with a spliff in one hand and an erection in the other. That’s really not the case!

    I loved AMS, and hope to live there one day and explore the rest of NL/Holland. From what I’ve seen, it’s an interesting, quirky place and I feel right at home there!

    Comment by china blue — August 30, 2008 @ 8:11 am

  43. LOVE this post! It makes me want to learn the language more than anything, actually. Thanks!

    Comment by eli skipp — August 30, 2008 @ 9:00 am

  44. Holland, hol = hollow, land = land, thus ‘hollow land’ meaning the diked area’s which are lower than the sea forming hollow pieces of land. Technically the provinces Zuid- and Noord-Holland can be regarded as Holland only but most other provinces of the Netherlands have diked area’s (we are a delta country so we have dikes against rivers as well) and could be considered Holland.
    I love the Germans and the prejudice against them is mostly a result of mass psychosis and is one of the many lesser things about living here.

    Comment by ThunderPreacher — August 30, 2008 @ 11:02 am

  45. My girlfriends is Dutch. She can’t stop going on about tosti. Drives me nuts

    Comment by Ren — August 30, 2008 @ 11:18 am

  46. Stumbled upon this page. Interesting points you make. And mostly accurate. Being Dutch I would know, wouldn’t I. The thing about The Netherlands and Holland: Officially the country is called The Netherlands, but whenever I’m abroad I always say I’m from Holland. And when we cheer for the national football (soccer to you) team we say Hup Holland Hup. So basically we all get it wrong from time to time.
    The thing about pot being legal is so complicated that even the best lawyer would have difficulty explaining it.
    As for us not liking the Germans, I think that’s pretty much universal. Try going to France for instance. They really can’t stand them there. I suppose this all still has to do with WWII.
    I assure you the Dutch snacks, although they may not look appealing to you, have to meet rigorous standards and are not made from leftovers that can’t be sold anywhere else. Even though that’s a popular myth and just about anybody will tell you that they are made with cows eyes and ears and whatever else you can think of.
    But we do use umbrellas, even on our bicycles. But we’re obsessive about them. like the English.
    The thing about bicycles being stolen is, unfortunately, true.
    I’ve had two of mine stolen over the years.
    Once again i liked your article. It’s always nice to see a foreigners view of this lovely country.

    Comment by Rien Jansens — August 30, 2008 @ 11:46 am

  47. I meant to say we’re NOT obsessive about umbrellas

    Comment by Rien Jansens — August 30, 2008 @ 11:48 am

  48. Apparently the Germans have no love for the Dutch either.

    A german friend told me this joke:

    What are the 4 phases of water?

    A: liquid, solid, gas….and a Dutch tomato

    Whenever I’ve told this to a German, they laugh hystreically, saying “Ja, is true!”

    Comment by Jaleel — August 30, 2008 @ 12:24 pm

  49. hehe. its funny to read all of these comments. Some of them seem like the person only knew about two words of english. Esspecially some of the dutch comments. Anyway, i’m part dutch. my last name, de Vlaming, is dutch. Apparently there is a hotel in Amsterdam, or some city in holand, that is the de Vlaming hotel. I am american and NO ONE pernounces it right here. the pernounce it like \defleming.\ It gets on my nerves!!

    Comment by kcat3838 — August 30, 2008 @ 5:44 pm

  50. American child of a Dutch mother here. You forgot to mention the very weird concept of “gezellig” in Dutch culture. I’m not sure what the actual definition is, but my Oma once explained it to me as “togetheryness”. It is usually used to describe long family get-togethers and large crowds involved in pointless activities in my experience.

    Also, there’s the issue of “Ik kan niet” (pardon my spelling if that’s not right; I don’t speak the language). In short, the Dutch refuse to do pretty much ANYTHING the first time you ask. The respond with “Ik kan niet” or “I can’t do that.” Once while we were on a trip to Holland, my mom approached a woman at a ticket counter and spoke to her in English about switching trains. She was greeted with a series of “Ik kan niet”s until she gave up, switched to Dutch and say “I don’t care if you can’t. I can be a pissy Dutch lady as well as you can. I want to switch trains!” The ticket was rapidly granted.

    And finally, on bicycles- the standard practice (if you can get away with it) is that if your bike is stolen you just steal someone else’s bike. Thus the entire country is constantly about 5 bikes short of its population. It’s like a game of musical chairs.

    And finally, the Dutch birthday song may be the most obnoxious thing in the world when your half-deaf Opa sings it at high volume irrespective of the neighbor’s preferences… Actually, scratch that. It’s obnoxious regardless of who’s singing it!

    (But god, hagelslaag is good stuff. As is all dutch chocolate, cookies, pastry, and poffertjes!)

    Comment by afiena — August 30, 2008 @ 10:22 pm

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