If I had a column in the Delft op Zondag

(Not the real)
Delft op Zondag


3 DEC 2017

DELFT - Some weeks, it takes more time to find out about something that is not today's fireworks. Sure, Twitter twits and Facebook smiles - and no site likes my Ad-blocker. Like a good archaeologist, you have to sift through the dirt to find a clue. For example, DeZandmotor (sand motor) they have made along a stretch of Den Hague's beach.

It is meant as a 'real life' experiment in influencing coast lines. (The Sand Motor) Given the number of people who live on coasts, it is useful to know more about effects of types of sand added, plants that grow quickly and anchor sand, and the impact of a line of dunes. The study area already adds to recreational and feeding space. Holland is on the great North-South flight path, though fewer birds travel as winters average milder. Delft even has a flock of wild parrots which lives here all year.

Where Drift You?


The bike and pedestrian bridge across the Schie canal has an automated watch house. Barges and yachts queue and wait their turn. Dutch famously say: I am late because the bridge was open - meaning up. The university is beyond this point so traffic is heavy. Those using it see 'Waar drijf jij?' - where are you going? And around the corner is written 'Ik sta hier' - I am standing here.

Not long ago, I read of a farmer up north, in Friesland, which can be a cold salt marsh most of the year. He has found a way to raise potatoes in ground too salty for it. They are being grown, sold and doing well. I keep meaning to ask the Potato man in Thursday's market if he has any in stock. But, his stall is past the Nuts caravan and the Candy Man, so my mind has drifted off by then.

Of things that are better, congratulations to Mr. Musk who has won his bet with South Australia. His huge battery farm is built and running. Is it not amazing how many bold, imaginative people we have produced for this still-new century. I am one of those in favor of cars that do not need to be driven by anyone - and which park themselves. And I do not care if it is made in China; just give me the remote.

I wonder if finally forming a government here was news in the US, or if it was only of interest to us. There were very different views on immigration and education, hot topics. As well, there was jockeying for plum jobs.

It is noticeable that folks seem to have a bit more money than last year this time. Not that a Dutch person is likely to start throwing about his coins the moment he has a bit extra. That would not be prudent at all.

Shops are steadily busy and, in one, a person can wait in line a long time as the people in front you want their purchase gift-wrapped. Only the busiest shops have a person who does only that. Usually, the sales clerk wraps.

My impression is the Dutch can be overly sensible: keeping things a long time, not throwing much away, and buying 'used'. They will also fill their homes with objects of art they fancy and enjoy displaying.

Next year, Brexit will continue to muck about, but Amsterdam has won an agency that must leave the UK. Nothing personal but our weather is milder than England's and our English easier to understand.

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