Surprised I looked around the room: a bed nicely made up, with a small pile of towels and a face cloth at the foot of the bed. A bedside table with a bedside lamp and a small vase with flowers from the garden. An own sink, a private balcony, a heater and a notice board with beautiful, carefully chosen quotes to cheer me up. I stayed with a friend in the forests for a weekend: recovering myself for a couple of days with nymph Sytske and her knight Joris.
The Sunday was a Sunday like a fairy-like Sunday. Sleeping in, together having breakfast with the eggs of the chickens in the garden and fresh orange juice, reading a book, baking a pie, talking at the fireplace, watching ice skating on tv, cooking extensively and watching films on the sofa with a blanket at night. I think it was weeks, or even months ago that I had the feeling that I didn’t have to think for a moment. Last Sunday I managed to rest while I was doing something. Maybe it is not even important what you do, but how you do it.
It helps to be outside. And chickens in the garden help too.
“SNOW!!!” I hear Sytske yelling somewhere at the other side of the house. With a broad grin, she enters the living room: there is snow and it is Valentine’s Day. There is a present in the study that Joris hid there, but the key of the door is missing… With almost impatient curiosity, she starts searching the room for the key. I never do something for Valentine’s Day, and neither do Sytske and Joris, normally. That is why it is so nice that he had bought a big bunch of red roses for her this year. A bouquet that is actually a bit too chic for the house, but because of that, so nice.
I think it is great if people have a practical attitude. I like to see how people outside the city reside, work and live. Not too much unnecessary luxury and not being disgusted with rolling up their sleeves. Maybe I idealize this, but I am able to settle down in a village in which the shops are closed on Sundays. In which you will find forests and heath-land within a radius of 200 meters. In a house in which you sit on a sofa or a chair with a blanket, in front of the fireplace. And in which you will eat venison stew on Sunday evening, and let the Sunday just be the Sunday. I especially like it when people with a practical attitude are moving with the times and for example buy a bunch of roses and a box of chocolates for their practical girlfriend for Valentine’s Day.
A girlfriend who in her turn tidies up the guest room, not just practically by laying out towels and shower gel, but by doing everything to make you feel welcome and at home. On Monday and Tuesday I was all by myself in the big house, walking almost all alone on the Utrecht Hill Ridge and sitting all alone on the sofa, reading a book. But I haven’t felt lonely.
Is it because I am under a delusion? Because I let the delusions live my life? Delusions of wealth, abundance, luxury and malleability, that only lead to scarcity? A scarcity that I can see disappear when life gets easier. When people dwell upon things that really matter.
Translated by Hester Falkena