Thursday, May 6, 2010

A week and an entry as schizophrenic as John Cusack in Identity

Is that an obscure enough entry title for you?

Remember a little while ago when I told you about Queen’s Day?
Well I think it’s time I showed you footage.  There’s really no way to describe it.  There’s a whole lot of Orange.  Believe it or not (I’m gonna go with not unless you’ve actually experienced Queen’s Day for yourself,) these were some of the much tamer outfits worn that day. Oh and also...the Garbage people went on strike that day.  And the entire city was one giant trash heap.  Just thought you should know.
Group shot Queen’s Night after our craft session with all things orange…
All set to go out on Queen’s Day (yes that is an orange bra poking out!)…
(Start of) Canal Parade…
And yes those are hotel bathrobes.  Because that’s how we role…
What can I say? I'm a baller...

Yep.  So there you go.  I think the closest thing that we have in the US in Mardi in New Orleans…maybe.  It’s hard to believe anything else can be just as insane.

But then a week later on May 4th and 5th is Liberation Day(s) in Holland.  The 4th is the much more somber remembrance of the lives lost, while the 5th is the celebration of freedom (Basically it’s Queen’s Day II.) They celebrate their Liberation from Nazi Germany in World War II in 1945.  It’s amazing how well observed this Holiday is by the entire country.  I don’t mean to get political, but allow me to put this into perspective…
I brought up 9/11 while talking with Suzan and Rogier the night of the 4th.  I was saying how amazed I was that 65 years later, everyone still wakes up on May 4th, knows it is Remembrance Day, and at 8:00 the entire country fall silent for two minutes.  Movies are paused, practices are delayed, and games are stopped for this national observance.  And here we are less than ten years later and half of America probably forgot to *realize* that on September 11th it was September 11th.  But Rogier explained…
September 11th was the first “fight” on American soil (forgoing the Pearl Harbor, not yet a part of, not the continental, etc. argument please.)  The "fight" on our soil lasted a day and over 5000 lives were tragically lost.
World War II lasted for four years in Holland.  On average, 5,000 people Dutch citizens died every single day.  Please, please understand that I’m not saying that 9/11 is less worth remembering.  And the impact it had on so many elements of our country – our politics, our defense system, our economy, and our livelihood, will remain a part of history forever.  But it cannot be compared to Europe in World War II.  Not because it’s any less significant.  I can’t stress this enough.  It just can not be compared.  To put it lightly inappropriately, it’s apples and oranges.
Any Cloggies out there want to contribute anything?  Did I miss something?

Ok.  So there you go.  I know that was a little bit of an intense bit of information.
Anyway…at 8:00 on May 4th Suzan and I were watching the service on TV in Amsterdam.  We were about a minute and a half into the moment of silence and this is what we saw…

Let me start off by saying everything turned out to be ok (as much as it could after that chaos) and the Queen returned and the ceremony continued.  What has now been officially released is this…

“A panic ensued among the thousands assembled on the May 4 Remembrance Day to join the Queen to honor the dead of the Second World War, which ended 65 years ago. The two minutes of silences had almost ended when a man in the crowd started screaming. Another dropped his case out of fright which caused a bang, setting off cries of "a bomb, a bomb". In the ensuing stampede to get away from the area, 63 people were hurt. Luckily, the worst injuries were broken bones.”

But can you imagine watching the TV and all of a sudden that’s what you see?  I FREAKED!  We had no idea what was going on.  All Suzan could say was “SHIT SHIT SHIT SHIT”

Of course which caused Fien to reply “What is shit mama?”

Word fo the Day: Dodenherdenking – Remembrance Day


  1. Looks like you had a good time! I can't imagine being in that crowd!

  2. We had a similar reaction watching the ceremony on TV too! They started rushing out the royal family and my heart skipped a little. I'm glad it wasn't worse, but I wish it hadn't happened in the first place.

  3. Oh OH Oh OH OH!!! I know about Queen's Day!!! How cool to see pictures! One of Greg's friend's sister in law (yeah, follow that )... is from Holland and she told me about Queen's Day! So cool!


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