If I had a column in the Delft op Zondag

(Not the real)
Delft op Zondag


14 MAY 2017

The New Guy

DELFT - The scrappy kid won. Like the Dutch, the French know what is best for their pockets and what is for bars and clubs. It looks as if enough voters in France do not feel going back to the country's sense of their Exceptionalism was the better option for the future.

It was a similar question here but not exactly so. Consensus in government is a foremost, upmost principle. In our election, Holland for the Dutch only vied against cautious optimism. All political parties refused to be in a coalition with Wilders. Had he won, Consensus would end, and we would live with rights for some and not for others. It is easy to see that life is changing, but no one seems to know what and how exactly.


"How odd to see a candidate who is not old, worn to wrinkles by experience of the world, who sees a better way ahead and who is unconventional. He does not carry about the way things were because he is too young. That is one of his attractions."

Weather is one of those wild things that does not care what you might have planned for this day, such as an outdoor barbeque. Spend all you like on your hair, and the wind will blow it apart without a flip about your look.

My back garden is only a warm day away from having me messing about, fussing whimsically. I think a person can live closely beside others so long as one has a bit of ground, a balcony or a window planter. I live in a row house with my garden on to a center courtyard. Our side forms a long edge of an inner rectangle. When children from a nearby school have recess, it is noisy. When the drummer across the way practises his half an hour daily, it is annoying. When all is stillness, it is peaceful.

Even so, Dutch know where their euro comes from, which is pragmatic. Holland is a trading nation with people who have always looked outwards in chasing profit. A single currency, a single market, is good for business.

On the other hand, the UK and US are sticking to being exceptional. They each have the firepower to back up their choice, and good luck to us all about that. Globalism is not loved everywhere but necessary in our times.

There is a feeling, maybe my imagination, that open is winning over closed, in attitudes toward our work force, equality, migration and opportunity. Issues like these affect us 'on the doorstep'. But France said: this way forward.

I am looking forward: to Summer. We have had a series of days - practice summer - that teased us. Those few times, the wind and clouds are off the balmy Gulf Stream. Between we had bland skies and spotty rain.

Delft is building new neighborhoods; there are a lot of Dutch. The homes will be low-rises, about 4 stories. These will be designed neighborhoods based on data collected on our habits. That plainly is our near future.

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