Monday, 29 November 2010

What I Did This Week ..... Well , Not Everything , Of Course .

Sonata :

Well , we finally got to the Collector's Fair in Utrecht , Friend and I . We had our usual enjoyable potter through a huge number of stalls , selling everything from Thirties' haberdashery to ( metal) detectorists finds . Why anyone would want a handful of old rusty bent nails escapes me , but then why did I lug home a handful of 1930s and '40s business letters ? I could probably find a Taschen book of pre-war graphic designs with plenty of examples like this

But I can read these and try to picture the correspondents . There is , for instance , a humble apology for the malfunction of a fan and the hope that the client will be so kind as to accept the immediate replacement of same , signed by the boss with his "salutations bien distinguèes " . What do you think , would I get the same treatment now if I sent back my defunct pop-up toaster ?

Meanwhile , it's nearly the end of term and it's almost Sinterklaas , the night when Dutch children get their presents and there are all the decorations to make with the pre-schoolers . Serried ranks of St . Nicolaases line the window ledges

bishop's mitres and page boy hats in bright crepe paper hang from every available hook . We've sung every song to death and read every picture book about the Good Man to tatters . And this week we'll hold three parties , complete with small presents , which must be hunted for .

On the 6th. he'll have been and gone and the children will calm down .

Which will be handy , because then I'll be able to prepare for my next career . The one I'll be taking up when the Budget Cuts start squeezing the playschools out of existence

I find , to my relief , that I already know a fair number of these songs so I'm off to a head start .
You must do , too . So all together now , one , two , three ... " All I want For Christmas Is My Two Front Teeth ".


elizabethm said...

That has to be the best book title I have seen this year! Fabulous!

Rattling On said...

Umm, big budget cuts here as well. Fingers crossed for us both.
I have seen, on another Dutch blog, that the children dress up and black their faces. Could you explain what that's all about? Most interested.

Jinksy said...

I can think of nothing better than a quick busk at Christmas! I'd join you if I could...

Anonymous said...

I would love to go to this fair ~ and a handful of rusty nails is just what I need to repair some bits and pieces round my home! As for the other things, I belong to an international mail art network and would love some of those other bits and pieces. You do some wonderful things.

Kate on Clinton said...

Love that book! Please do tell more about these Sinterklaas. Is this in addition to Christmas or another way of celebrating it?