Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Writer's block

The whole day I was walking around in search for today's blog topic. Early afternoon I decided to finally share something very personal and almost tragic. Later in the afternoon my mood cleared and I decided to postpone that one (again).

Then I wanted to write about my quest for good blogs, but remembered that I blogged about (corporate) blogs in January and I think some time before that already. I don't want to be repetitive (not about blogs at least). I did an update of my list of frequent reads (right side of this blog), feel free to check it out and that's it on the topic.

In the evening, when I was cooking my dinner I thought I could write about how cleaning up my fridge mainly consists of throwing away ancient foods. But then I discovered that Arnon Grunberg blogged on that topic today (damn, have to go shopping again!). I'm no copycat of a famous writer, so no fridge post today. Maybe later, when I actually clean my fridge.

I thought about posting on things I like and dislike. I've been carrying that idea for ages now. I've even started with two little lists of 'like' and 'dislike' things. In the process I've realised this is too good of a topic to use for a writer's block cover-up. So I erased the lists and promised to myself to elaborate on that topic in the nearest future.

After all that I considered skipping a post, but reminded myself of my determination to write at least 23 posts a month. Skipping is not an option today.

And then I thought that I haven't shared a piece of music for quite some time already. So here we go: Високосный год (Visokosny god) - Лучшая песня о любви (The Best Song About Love) (I should dedicate a blog post to Russian music some time)

Monday, 30 August 2010


A conversation overheard at the reception of the municipality:
Woman (visitor): Hi! Ramadan moubarak.
Man at the reception: Ramadan moubarak!
Woman: Are you fasting?
Man: Yes. You?
Woman: No.
Awkward silence follows.

He: My friend sleeps the whole day during the Ramadan. What's the point in fasting if you sleep the whole day?
Me: Yes, what's the point anyway?
He: When you fast, you feel what poor and less fortunate feel when they have no food. If you sleep, you don't feel any hunger. So there's no point.
Me: OK.

I went to the Turkish grocery store around the corner and got myself a Ramadan schedule. They had it in two designs: green and brown. I got the green one because it looks prettier. It's on my fridge now all gold and shiny. I hope Allah is not angry at me now.
My Muslim friend looked at me while I was pinning the schedule to my fridge and said: "Yeah, that's how it all starts. And then, when you blow yourself up in the middle of a crowded salsa party, they'll blame me! Please, start cooking already, will you?"

Sunday, 29 August 2010


A couple of days ago I went to the bank to resolve an issue with my debit card. I had to show my ID and the bank employee pointed out my ID were to expire in a couple of months. What?! I've only got it recently! Well, that was almost five years ago. Time flies. My first Dutch ID-card is about to expire. Which means that it's almost five years ago that I acquired Dutch nationality.

Back home I checked some papers for the exact date. 29 of September 2005. That's when Her Majesty The Queen of the Netherlands has put her signature on the document stating that I (along with 98 other people) have won "the lottery".

Five years is a figure worth celebrating. And that is exactly what I am going to do - party! September 29 is a Wednesday this year, so celebrations will take place on Saturday, 2 October. Next week I'm going to send out invitations (FB, LinkedIn, e-mail and sms) and then I'll start with preparations. There will be a couple of polls on this blog as well.

Please feel free to invite yourself! Because if you haven't received an invitation from me then it's because I don't have your contact information, think you live too far to come over or I'm not aware about your existence. But you are most welcome! Really! Unless your name is Martin Timmer. Then you're not.

If you would like to come, please don't wait for an invitation and send me an e-mail (mirskykh[at]hotmail[dot]com).

Friday, 27 August 2010

Ethnic registration

This morning I found a piece of paper on the table in the train. It was a printed A4. The title read: 'Have you registered your ethnicity yet?' It was about the new government and how far PVV, one of the parties, wants to go. And that one should think twice before supporting such initiatives. PVV suggests everyone's ethnicity should be registered. I didn't vote for PVV. And I am inclined to oppose anything they stand for. But this pamphlet brought me back in time.

In Soviet Union everyone had their ethnicity in their passport. Kids had the ethnicity of their parents in their birth certificate.
Like this -->
If both of your parents had the same ethnicity, you'd automatically 'inherit' that. Otherwise you had to choose once you reached the age of 16 and ordered your passport. It was a tough choice for me then. Not that I felt particularly Jewish, but choosing one felt like denying the other. Tough choice.

When Ukraine became independent in 1991 a lot needed to be taken care of. We carried our Soviet passports, but at a certain point we had a stamp in them stating that we are citizens of Ukraine now. And then the new passports came. They didn't have ethnicity in them. And guess what? We were not happy about that! For all the minorities this felt like Ukraine was denying their right to belong to their ethnic group. Everyone is Ukrainian now. And that's not what we wanted. Russians, Jews, Hungarians, etc. all wanted to be what they are.

It's amazing how differently people can see the same issue when they look from different perspectives. I am against ethnic registration in the Netherlands.

Thursday, 26 August 2010

Girl power?

Tonight I went to help a friend to put a door back on its hinges. She was renovating her apartment and wanted to have some doors painted anew. She though taking the doors off their hinges was a good idea. Painting was handy all right. It's just that putting the doors back appeared to be considerably less fun.

We didn't manage to arrange a man to help us tonight, so we ended up having a team of three ladies. First we had a dinner and a nice chat. 50 minutes. One of the old hinges was lost, so we put new
fittings on the door post. 30 minutes. Then we tried to put the door on. After 40 minutes trying we figured out that the old and the new parts don't fit together. We removed the old parts off the door (a challenge!) and put the new ones. 50 minutes. We then tried to put the door on again (10 minutes at most) only to discover that it still didn't fit. We'd have to move one of the fittings on the door post down by one millimetre. We didn't have the right instruments for that. Besides it was already too late. We decided to postpone that till next week.

There's just one little problem. This is the toilet door! And my friend will have her housewarming party next Saturday. We left the door hanging on one hinge so the guests can have an illusion of privacy.

I was biking home through the rainy night and thought that even though we haven't managed to fix the door today I still believe in the girl power!

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

מזל טוב צו דיין געבורסטאָג, אוקריינא

Ukraine has turned twenty today. Ukraine in its current state that is. Twenty is a nice number worth celebrating. Celebrating despite the political mess, corruption and tough economic situation. Celebrating with speeches, church services, artists' markets, military bands parades, rock and pop concerts.

Ukrainians are supposed to be proud. Proud and happy. All of them. Including Russians, Gypsies, Tatars, Greeks, Gagauz and all other ethnic groups living in Ukraine. To show how happy they are, they sing the Ukraine national anthem in their own languages. There are video clips in thirteen languages. Jews sing along. All 103 thousand of them according to the little film. All 103 thousand that for some reason haven't fled the country. Yet.

Oh, wait, what's wrong with the clips? Why do I get this strange déjà vu feeling? I've seen this before. Long ago. Very long ago! People singing happily in different languages, trying to depict how proud they are of their country. That was in early eighties in Soviet Union.
It's amazing how much my perception of such propaganda material changed in the past 25 years. When I was a Soviet kid, this kind of clips made me proud and happy. Now I watch them in disbelieve. At first I thought it was a joke. What is the idea behind this? Why would anyone in their right mind take this seriously? Why would anyone in their right mind seriously engage in making of these ... ehm... clips?

Look at the little Jose (or whatever the name is) - good boy. Great actor! I wonder, are these orphans? No parents to protest against their participation in this pathetic happening?

Happy Birthday, Ukraine!

Monday, 23 August 2010

Bread with butter and sugar

Yesterday's post reminded me of a book I bought several years ago at a thrift store. Somehow I never really bothered to read it, but yesterday I suddenly thought it may contain an answer to the question of how a woman can keep a man tied up to herself. The book (written by James Thurber and E.B. White) is called 'Is Sex Necessary?'. It was published by Harper&Brothers Publishers in New York in 1929.

Tonight I've browsed through the book in search of the answers. The book deals with the nature of the American male, love and passion, feminine types, sexual revolution and some more related issues. I was particularly curious about the chapter called 'What every Young Wife Should Know'. It says nothing about wide skirts and talking with 'lower' lips or such. There's, however, some insight and practical advice:

"[...] women marry men without giving the serious chasm between their essential natures a thought. They think that a man wants a home. Well, he does, in a vague sort of way. Not so much a home, however, as a house. He likes to be able to say where he lives when he goes to vote, and things like that."

"A wife should strive at all times to give her husband at least the illusion that he is free to come and go."

"If a husband uses a guest towel, he should be quietly reprimanded, but under no circumstances sent to his room. After pointing out, briefly, that the guest towels are not to be used, the wife might even give him a piece of bread and butter with sugar on it, or a kind word."
(This is to prevent the husband from getting a feeling that he's "boxed in" with no escape.)

" [...] The same rules should apply to husbands when they live things lying around, or track in dirt, or forget to shut the refrigerator door. None of these faults is, after all, of very great importance, and they should be lightly dismissed."

"A wife is forever taking it for granted that her husband should know as much about a household as she does. If she would only realize that things which are easy and uncomplicated to her are strange and mysterious to her husband, and explain the mysteries to him, adjustments could be arrived at very simply, and sex then have a chance to mean something."
The book also says that writing is a form of sexual expression and quotes someone who goes even further, saying: writing is sex. Hmmmm...

Sunday, 22 August 2010

Feminine energy

About a year ago I've come across a remarkable ad on the internet promising women to get them married in two months  time. The link led me to the website of the Female Club "I Want To Get Married". The club is nothing more than an enterprise of a lady who claims to know what a woman should do to get a man to propose. She wrote a book with practical advice and exercises (which she sells on the website). She also organises all kinds of trainings and courses on the topic. There is no way you can get me to pay for stuff like that, but I was curious enough (mainly because of the absurdity of the idea) to subscribe for the free newsletter.

Most of the advice given in the newsletter seems to make sense: don't be too focused on getting married, don't start talking about marriage and children on the first date, relax, wear flattering clothes, etc. Sometimes the 'Club' seems to lose it. That's when they tell you to add up all the letters of your birthday, divide the number by 3 and draw the result in red ink on your hip together with your zodiac sign. Or say some special words in some extinct language every night. Or eat only red food for seven weeks in a row. Luckily this kind of stuff doesn't appear in the newsletters too often.

Today I have received another issue of the newsletter. 'Alexandra, learn how to increase your feminine energy.' The idea is that if a man feels a strong (sexual) energy he will find a woman attractive regardless of age or looks and he will maintain that interest as long as he feels the energy. If there is no such energy no beauty will be able to keep a man focused on a (serious) relationship for more  than a couple of weeks. So far so good. There is a special training for that, but the president of the Club is generous enough to give away three tips for free.

Tip number one: stop wearing trousers and switch to skirts and dresses. Apparently skirts and dresses below the knee, especially wide models, give you more feminine energy. Hmmm, how about style and such?

Tip number two: before asking a man to do something for you (take out the garbage or buy you a diamond ring) give him a little bit of sexual energy. Unfortunately, the newsletter doesn't reveal how exactly you're supposed to do that. I think you have to take the course to find out.

Tip number three: when talking to men imagine that you have a second set of lips near your uterus and that you talk using your 'lower' lips instead of your 'upper' lips. What?! Ok, if you are a man, imagine a woman who's talking to you using her 'lower' lips. Have you pictured this? Now RUN!!!

I'm going dancing and I think I'll put on my pink dress. I haven't shaved my legs for nothing!
(Yes, exactly like this, but then pink.-->)

Chocolate cake on the spur of the moment

I have been stumbling today. And when I stumble my hands become itchy. I have design, crafts and cooking set up among my interests and my mind starts making most incredible things when I see other people creations. I do my best not to expand my list of projects (oh, by the way, I did replace buttons with coins on my red Miss Sixty blouse), but today I didn't manage to resist the temptation.

Anyway, today I've stumbled upon a very appealing chocolate cake recipe. It was so appealing that I rushed to the nearest supermarket at 21:00 to get chocolate cake mix and chocolate ice-cream. And voila:
Cool down, baby!
With the chocolate topping it almost has an effect of death by chocolate. Get the recipe here.

Friday, 20 August 2010


I love big. (No, you don't think what I think you think, do you? That's cheap!) Big buildings. Big rooms. Big cars. Big airplanes. Big cities. Big sums of money. Big events. Anything!

You know, I was born in a big city at the largest river of Europe and up till the age of seventeen (almost) I lived in the largest country in the world.  Until I was fifteen years old I haven't really seen places smaller than one million inhabitants. Big is what I grew up with. My vision of the world has crimped considerably since I discovered Europe. Which is ok. Europe has big things too. Big cities. Large museums. Great nations. Huge airports. Ambitious projects (GOELRO-like). Great events.

Speaking of great events. Today I had an appointment in Amsterdam and a friend of mine suggested we'd go have a look at Sail Amsterdam afterwards. We were rather unprepared and missed the programmed activities, but we managed to have a peek at the ships at Het IJ.

OMG! This is an event of decent proportions: loads of boats and immense crowds of people. I loved to watch tall ships. Because they are big! Sailing is not really my dream (I'd rather stay ashore and not be sick), but those boats are awesome! I'd watch them for hours, but my friend pointed out that if we don't get going we will get stuck in a huge traffic jam. Obviously, he is not such a fan of big.


If you are not good in baking or don't have time for that don't worry. There's a pastry you can make without having to switch on your oven.

You will need:
250g biscuits
100g nuts
75g butter
0,5 glass of milk
2 table spoons of powdered sugar
2 table spoons of cacao powder

1. Put the biscuits in the blender and crush them into crumbs. Do the same with nuts.
2. Mix a little bit of nut crumbs, powdered sugar and cacao to cover the pastry later on. Put the mixture aside.
3. Heat the milk up. Mix cacao and powdered sugar and pour in the milk. Add butter cut in pieces (to make it melt faster). Mix this all together and let it cool off a little.
4. Mix the crumbs of biscuits and the nuts. Add the cacao liquid and mix it all into a homogeneous paste like substance. Use this to form little balls.
5. Roll the balls in the mixture of nuts, cacao and sugar. Let the pastry cool off in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

Important: don't use a blender to mix the 'dough'. It will make cookies that stick to your mouth. I made this for work the other day and my colleagues didn't like them. :(

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

Wheezing monster

There I am again, being rather quiet and otherwise producing weird sounds. People look terrified when they hear that for the first time. When they get used to the sounds they start laughing. In the past two days nearly everyone of my friends and colleagues has made a joke about it being so nice and quiet around now I have no voice. A friend called me on the phone and after three minutes of fruitless attempts to understand what I was trying to say he told me I should quit smoking right now. A colleague said it was unfair of me to spend the night before drinking and shouting because now my work has to suffer. Another colleague said he'd rather have me being quiet because the sounds I produce are too scary and make him want to go home. This pattern repeats itself two or three times a year. I'm so used to it, I can predict all the reactions and jokes up to the slightest detail. So teasing and pestering is not something I'm concerned with.

What I am worried about is my weight. I had to skip dancing on Sunday and if my throat will not get better, I'll have to skip another couple of evenings. And then I'll roll back to the horrible 60kg. I see myself as a fat wheezing monster. The trousers I bought this summer won't fit which is a complete disaster. Although I'll be able to wear the ones I bought last spring which would be nice. Anyway, I am concerned with my weight. AGAIN! I think I need more work or a new hobby that'll keep my head off my scales.

Not connected to the topic at all: Slow Train Soul - Naturally

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Love to hate to love

I love his brown eyes. I hate him for not teaching me his language. I love him for being a man. I hate that he's so sweet to me. I love that he protects my dignity. I hate that he protects me from myself. I love him for all the support. I hate him for still being supportive. I love him for being generous. I hate him for letting me break his heart. I love him for giving me confidence. I hate him for taking my confidence away. I love him for his trust. I hate him for forgiving me. I love him for being honest. I hate him for breaking my heart. I love him. I hate him. I love him... I hate him... And I am not even drunk!

Friday, 13 August 2010

Young and naive

I have received this song yesterday from a man. A young man. I don't want to think about this, but he forces me to.

Heather Rigdon - Young and Naive

In general I am quite happy I don't smoke or drink alcohol. But sometimes I wish I did!

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Morning rituals

Wednesday, 11 August 2010


I'm ill. Nothing serious, just a cold. Although it's nasty enough to prevent me from going to work (or doing anything at all). A friend came to visit me and brought me oranges. They are delicious, but I was a little disappointed there were no stickers on them. I was looking for a diamond black sticker with 'Maroc' written on it. When I was little we bought oranges in Moscow and those had the Maroc sticker on them. I get a little sentimental when I'm ill.

I was having my fifth orange just an hour ago when I came to realise something. You see, oranges were not available in Kiev or Saratov. We always bought them in Moscow. Oranges were not available in most other cities. This means that people who didn't travel to Moscow on a regular basis had never had an opportunity to get oranges. So there were people who never tasted an orange. I never realised this before. This seems very weird now... Were oranges widely available in Western Europe in the late seventies?

Tuesday, 10 August 2010


Today I've learnt that a friend of mine is avoiding me in Skype because he thinks I'm hitting on him.  The guy has an impressive list of hobbies and is certainly a very interesting person to talk to, but I never considered him as a potential 'candidate'. So hitting on him was not my intention in any way.

But my intentions don't count. What matters is his interpretation of the way I communicate with him. The truth turned out  to be very uncomforting. Do I appear so desperate? Apparently yes. Ouch! I had to hear it not from him, but from someone else. Ouch! Even though I have never considered him as a potential partner, this news sounded as a hard rejection. Ouch! (The latter made me smile when I realised it, though.)

I suddenly saw our chat conversations in a whole new light. So his questions about my love life were not triggered by his genuine interest. He was fishing for information to see how safe it was to talk to me. What about his questions about my work? And...? Ouch! I've deleted him from my list of contacts in Skype to give him back his safety.

I don't blame him. I myself have lost a bucket of Ben&Jerry's to a friend in a bet. I thought a man we both knew wanted more from me than a friendship. My friend said it was nonsense. Together we figured out it was nonsense indeed. Now she enjoys her Ben&Jerry's.

But I concluded that with my thirty six I still have to learn how to be spontaneous but not dominant, nice but clear, talkative but not tiresome, sociable but not annoying. Can anyone suggest a good book on the subject?

Time for some music: Bitter:Sweet - Salty Air

Sunday, 8 August 2010


Nausea. How often have you experienced that feeling? For me nausea is a part of my life just like headaches, bruises on my legs (because I bumped into my bed AGAIN), feeling sleepy or hungry. Nothing to worry about, just learn to avoid it as much as possible. And live with it. When I was little my parents protected me from it in every possible way. I remember coming completely wasted to my evening pre-university lessons because I had to take the bus. No long trips by car, bus or boat. Any flight of a couple of hours means being thirsty and sleepy of travel pills. No airplane flights if possible. I can recall being sick for hours after three minutes in some turning machine on a fair. No roller coasters.

Talking about fairs - I don't really like them. Most attraction parks simply don't have enough things to entertain me taking into account I don't go into anything that turns. Fourteen years ago I discovered Efteling and my world has become a lot more joyful. There are so many things to enjoy without the risk of becoming sick! I did try the roller coasters in Efteling, though. I can have one per visit and it takes a couple of hours to recover. I don't know why I do it. I never really enjoy the experience. I just wait till it's all over so I can breathe again.

 It got better with years: travelling has trained my vestibular system so that I no longer have to avoid cars and busses. Dancing salsa with all its spinning and turning seems to have a positive effect too. But I know how far I can go. At least so I thought.

This year I spent my birthday in Efteling. It's the first and the last time I go there in August! It was a lovely day and the park was incredibly crowded. We spent hours waiting. My friend's feet were burning. Our wallets were empty. But it all was worth it and this visit was different from all the previous years. You know why? Because I went into three (!!!) roller coaster-like attractions!

I am thirty six and this is the beginning of the new era of my life: I don't get nauseous on a rollercoaster - I love it!!! It feels like victory and I can't wait to go back for more!

The Flying Dutchman: The ride takes 3.43 minutes. The tower is 22.5 metres tall and has a 45° tilt! The length of the coaster across which you are hurled at a speed of over 70 kilometres an hour, is 420 metres. During the ride you are exposed to G forces of up to a maximum of 2G (twice your own body weight) and a minimum of 0.2G (close to weightlessness). I loved it!!!

Thursday, 5 August 2010


You see:

You get:

Wednesday, 4 August 2010


I want this for my birthday:
It's a dumplings machine. Yes, a machine that makes dumplings. Pelmeni, to be precise. (Oh, and my birthday is next Friday, 6 of August.)

I have invited a friend for dinner tonight. "Today I will cook something you do like" - I promised. "Oh, yeah? What?" "Meatballs." "Oh yes, I like those!" I took some minced meat out of the freezer and suddenly felt a very strong craving for pelmeni. It's amazing that so many people can live without pelmeni. It's remarkable that I learned to survive without them. Actually, a freezer without pelmeni is worthless. Mine is stuffed with meat, fish, chopped parsley and pizzas. Plain wrong! I could fit about 30kg of pelmeni in there!

You can buy pelmeni in Russian shops. For that you have to live in a place where there is a Russian shop. Check. You have to go to the shop when it's open. That shouldn't be a problem. You have to go by car or by bike and have some isolation bags for frozen products. OK, fair enough. And then you have to be lucky they don't charge you EUR 15 per kg. Hmmm... I make pelmeni at home. At the moment I have all the ingredients, I just lack some four hours to actually make three or four hundred pieces. I also have to get rid of those pizzas to create place in my freezer. Heaven! Why can't I just walk to the supermarket around the corner and buy a pack of pelmeni to serve tonight?!

I have to introduce pelmeni on the Dutch market. Otherwise my life is not worth living. Where do I start?

Happy, not guilty

A friend showed up at my place this morning. His face was gloomy, he hadn't slept for a minute last night. He told me about his problem. It was a serious problem, something with almost disastrous consequences. His life was rolling down the hill with ever-growing speed and he was rolling along.

I tried to find comforting words. Of course I will help him. I will do anything that's in my power. It's just I have so little power... I am almost absolutely helpless in the face of this problem. I made him some mint tea, listened, said that for every problem there is a solution and that everything's going to be all right. He went to catch some sleep.

I saw him to the door and before he left I felt some kind of relief. I was not glad he was leaving. No, that was not the source of my relief. Lifted by an enormous boost of energy I have caught up on correspondence, thoroughly cleaned the entire house, cooked, talked to some friends, washed several loads of laundry, epilated my legs, downloaded some music, played some computer games and did some more smaller things all in some twelve hours.

Somewhere in the afternoon I have realised that I feel very happy. And that both my happy feeling and my energy come from the same source - my friend's problem. I felt happy that I don't have any problems. I felt happy I have a life allowing me to clean the house (or do whatever I wish) on a Tuesday. I felt happy I can dance. I felt happy I have so many friends. I felt happy I have such wonderful parents. I felt happy I get all this attention from young men. I felt happy and that gave me energy.

I felt happy because a friend had a problem. Not that I was happy to hear he had a problem. But I was happy after I knew he had a serious problem. I wasn't happy for my friend because he had a problem. But the fact that he had a problem made me feel happy. His problem didn't make me happy. But I started feeling happy after I heard about the problem. So, in fact I was happy because he had a problem. Hmm... Anyway, I tried to feel guilty, but didn't manage. Should I try harder?

One of the songs I downloaded today: Nouvelle Vague - Guns of Brixton

Monday, 2 August 2010

Alone (again)

New fence around my front yard - check.
Tidied up front yard with new plants and flowers - check.
New lock on the front door - check.
Painted kitchen ceiling - check.
Weed free garden - check.
More mint in the garden - check.
Loads of new clothes - check.
Brand new food processor - check.
My parents are gone - check :((((

Lhasa - El Desierto

Sunday, 1 August 2010


He smiled when he saw me park my bike outside. "I should ask for his name" - I thought.

"It's the last one!" - I exclaimed when I walked in.
"Do you want these trousers shorter?These must be for dancing! Could you dance for me?"
I did some basic steps, a turn, some lady styling.
"Beautiful. I would love to dance like this. I would love to dance with you! I'd take your hand and lead you to the dance floor."
"Take lessons. I think you'd be a good dancer."
He held his pen ready: "What's your name?"
I pretended to stare in disbelief: "You're not telling me you forgot! It's Alexandra."
He didn't ask for my number, but I was so used to giving it (not that they ever call me if my clothes are ready) that I started reading out my number anyway. I asked for his name.
"May I ask you how old you are? I realise you're not as young as I am but I'm curious."
"How old are you?"
"Twenty one."
"Wow, that's long ago! I am thirty six."
His eyes widened for a moment. "Are you serious? I thought you were somewhere in your twenties."
"Thank you." I smiled at the thought how easy it is to make a woman happy. A small flattering lie is enough.
"When will we see each other again? No, I don't mean your trousers! I want you to teach me to dance."
"Text me when you're back from vacation and we'll set up a date."
He wrote his name and number on a small piece of paper and gave it to me together with the receipt.

On my way home I realised that my hair was still not dry from the recent shower and I wore no makeup or jewellery. As I opened my front door fifteen minutes later I heard a text message coming in. "A little sweet tender kiss from your future dance partner." Ehm... Right! Now I am confused.

On a sunless day in the The Hague

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