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If I had a column in the Delft op Zondag

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(Not the real)
Delft op Zondag


16 OCTOBER, 2016

Als dit dinsdag is, dan... / If this is Tuesday, then...

DELFT - Tuesday is the day when things go off kilter, just a bit. Monday is simply starting up again after the weekend, Wednesday is half way through whatever you do and calls for a beer after work, Thursday and Friday are for planning the weekend.

My nickname for Tuesday is Dues-day. Switching to Dutch, it would be dienst-dag - service day. Each of us has dues and things need servicing, meaning there are things you have to do whether you like it or not. Toilets don't clean themselves; dishes pile up; clothes need washing. Tuesday is the day you cannot ignore something any longer. It is the day when a dentist tells you that you have to have a root canal. A not-future-enough Tuesday is the day its scheduled for.


"The back of my place faces northwest. If there is any sky to see, my view of it is sure to be a Dutch Masters, slow-fading scene. Every Dutch person thinks their sunset is the best, with obvious reason."

But that is OK because the people you were going off to see are late too. They'll say the equivalent of: I was sorting my socks and couldn't just leave it half done. But, if indeed you have all you need to patch your bike tire and can do it, then you hurry on to your meeting. There, you see you have not washed your hands and they are handing out cake.

When a day goes into free-fall Tuesday, all a person can do is smile pleasantly and let it fall. Wednesday will be along shortly and things will make more sense. There are no deadlines set for Wednesday, and you've already missed Monday's; so, if you can survive Tuesday, there is hope. This last week's Tuesday started out with sunshine and a Delft-blue sky in the early morning.

Tuesday is the day the fan in the bathroom stops working. When you see you have to get it fixed, you may chase a service man for days. Once you are actually speaking, he can come Tuesday but not this Tuesday. Check it off the list anyway.

Tuesday is the day you really, really run out of the things you didn't get around to last weekend: mayo, beer, bread, etc. It is the same day that you are ready to relax and discover you do not have a last bottle of wine in the cabinet above the sink.

It is always, somehow, on Tuesday that you realize that you forgot to take the fish for tonight's dinner out of the freezer before you left that morning. It becomes worse when microwaving a block of ice results in mush, not biological 'alt-meat'.

Stuff happens, meaning annoying and distracting things happen anytime, but Tuesday is the day they seem to come one right after the other. You are already late, and the slow leak in the back tire became faster; it is now flat as the landscape.

But by midday, it all was washed-out gray. There was a chill if you were in the shade, reminding folks winter was just round the corner. By 5 (17:00), the day cleared and changed to open sky, ruddy clouds and tree tops, ink-brush black, waving goodbye.

G. Wiley / NLStrabo - © Copyright - All rights reserved -
In memory of Herb Caen