Maybe Dutch can be a poetic language after all...

Sometimes it takes a foreigner to make notice what's great about your culture.

No, I am not changing my opinion of Dutch films. But Orion, my neighbour's American friend, who's staying here at the moment, introduced me tonight not just to one but two great Acda & De Munnik songs.

The first one was "Als het vuur gedoofd is" (when the fire's gone out), the song "Het regent zonnestralen" (it's raining sunbeams), a fabulous song as well, is apparently a sequel to. It's about Herman, again, sitting in the park thinking about opportunities missed. Acda & De Munnik are at their best when telling stories, finding poetry in everyday life, without having to use "poetic" language.

The second song, "dag Esmee", is also of the narrative kind...About someone running into a high school friend. And that's all I'll say, because the story's probably best when unfolded by Acda & De Munnik.

Why is it that it takes a foreigner -with, admittedly, a surprising grasp of Dutch for someone who's only spent 6 months here-to notice these songs? Oh, sure, every Dutch person knows "Niet of Nooit Geweest"(not or never been is probably the best translation, but it's not great) by heart, and that's a great song too, but why don't we go looking for these hidden gems?

Yet another thing for my wish list then. I'd better be on the lookout for a very rich Sinterklaas.


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