Sunday, 27 December 2009

Count your blessings and how to tell that someone is not gay....

I am back from all the Xmas visits. Dinner with my brother and his family was nice and my sister in law cooked a fantastic dinner with duck breast in porto sauce. It was nice to talk to my nephews a bit more than usual. My sister in law's brother was also there and his life is really in a mess: he is 58, no job, huge debts and is depressed. So I counted my blessings seeing this guy in huge problems. Sometimes when thinking about your own little problems it is good to compare with someone who really has issues of a larger magnitude....
The nice surprise on Xmas day was hearing the sweetest man's voice on the phone, even if his (and my) friends had to call to make it happen....
The visit to my mum's place was emotional as expected. My stepdad gave a speech in front of his children and grandchildren, basically a "goodbye for ever" speech, and called me "his 2nd son". His real son also wanted to say something, but started to cry in front of everybody so his sister had to finish his speech. On a lighter tone, my mom had bought a nice G-star Tshirt for the older grandson. I hadn't seen him in 3 or 4 years and was surprised that he developed into a very cute 16 year old guy. He tried the Tshirt on and it fitted perfectly....for a gay bar. He said he found it too tight and asked if maybe my mum could change it for one size bigger. GAY [ ] NOT GAY [ X ]

Thursday, 24 December 2009

A different Christmas

It is 315pm on Christmas Eve and I just got home from work, we closed shop early to give everyone a chance to do some last minute shopping.
Traditionally, my family don't do Xmas gifts so the only shopping I had to do was some wine and chocolates. Nice and easy.
Tonight, I'll have dinner with MA, JE and HE in our favourite restaurant Dynasty. I haven't eaten since breakfast to be able to eat the gorgeous food tonight! I hope I am able to go home after dinner, as they expect more snow and ice-rain from 10pm tonight which might make the roads too slippery for any transportation.....
If weather permits, tomorrow I'll drive to my brother's house to have dinner with his family. Originally the plan was to pick up my mum and stepdad and take them to my brother's, but unfortunately my stepdad is too sick to travel. After dinner on Christmas day I'll go to my mum's place and spend Boxing day there with my mum, my stepdad and his family. It will be a different atmosphere from "normal" years as he is so sick. Nobody knows if he will live another week, a month or maybe 2 months, but it is unlikely it will be any longer than that. On Sunday, i'll witness the final goodbye's between a father and his daughter as she will be going back to South Africa.

Tuesday, 22 December 2009


I got a new computer last week, and of course the old modem (dating from 1874) didn't work with the new computer so I needed to get a new modem and then my landline phone and the Internet connection totally stopped functioning. To add insult to injury there was heavy snow on Saturday/Sunday, it was so bad that it was too much of a hassle to leave the house so I was totally isolated. I must say I enjoyed the solitude: I never read so much, watched so many movies, called so many friends (thank god my mobile phone kept functioning), so all in all I had a good weekend. Today all connections work again and I am enjoying my new, fast computer.

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Goodbye Solo

I went to see Goodbye Solo yesterday, the latest movie by American director Ramin Bahrani. I had read a while ago that it was a good movie, but didn't remember the details so I didn't really know what to expect. The story is about a young black taxi driver, Solo, in North Carolina who has an old white man, William, as a regular passenger. The old man asks Solo to drive him up to a local mountain, "Blowing Rock", two weeks later: "one way, no questions please, and I'll give you $1,000." Solo smells trouble and tries to develop a friendship with William, who clearly doesn't like the attention and tries to get rid of Solo. However, Solo keeps trying, and more or less forces William to open up a bit. In the mean time, Solo has problems with his girlfriend and we see William often in the local cinema where he spends a lot of time with a young guy who sells the tickets.
Finally, Solo, accompanied by his stepdaughter, drives William to Blowing Rock, where he says goodbye to William (telling his stepdaughter "William is meeting a friend") and stares blankly in the distance suggesting that William jumped off the rock to commit suicide.
The film was a bit too arty for me (none of the stories has a head or a tail), and on the way out I picked up the local movie magazine that had an article raving about the movie ("the ultimate movie about friendship") and explaining how "one can not force friendship on somebody" and "you have to let go of even your best friends". Oh well.
After the movie I had dinner with MI and we discovered the best restaurant ever, Morlang on Herengracht. Their Indian lamb curry "rogan josh" is the best ever and the Tarte tatin is to die for. We will be back!

Tuesday, 8 December 2009


The weekend in London was good. I stayed with AA and got to meet his latest bf WO who seemed to be a nice guy. On Saturday we went to Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, the Musical, which was great fun - especially the costumes were excellent and the songs and jokes were hilarious. One of the songs was "Both sides now" by Joni Mitchell and listening to it I suddenly missed the sweetest man a lot and wished so much he was sitting next to me.....
On Sunday I visited MT and PE in their home in Roehampton, and when I arrived in Amsterdam around 8pm I choose to have one beer with the gang.....until suddenly it was 1am and I took a taxi home. A good weekend.
My stepfather is not doing well. Normally I don't speak with him on the phone often (my mother always picks up the phone when I call), and I was surprised when suddenly he called me last night. After some chit-chat he said that he had dreamt that he was on his death-bed and that he was talking to me, and he repeated the words he had said to me in his dream. I think it was his way of saying what he wanted to say to me (the dream story was just an excuse), and for the first time I could hear tears in his voice. In return, I said the words that I wanted to say to him before he dies, and it felt a bid surreal to have done it over the phone. I could feel that it won't be long until I am actually sitting at his death-bed. His daughter will be arriving this coming weekend, I will pick her up from the airport and take her to my mom's and stepfather's place. It will be quite hard to see somebody dear slip away from life.

Thursday, 3 December 2009


Yesterday was gay movie night again, and the movie was Connie and Carla, about two girls who dress as men who dress as women. The movie is ok, nothing special, but I liked the Filipino character and especially his accent. I think Filipino accents are among the cutest in the world. It helped that we had 6 Filipinos in our group, and while having beers after the movie we had a lot of fun replacing all f's for p's.
Tomorrow I will be going to London for the weekend. I am looking forward to seeing AA, MT and PE and especially to seeing the musical Priscilla for which I have tickets. I just hope this guy will not be next to me on the plane........

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

An example for all of us

Today, Ramses Shaffy (born 1933) died. He was a popular and much-loved singer and actor throughout my youth, and most of all he was a bohemian with a life-long love of life. In his own words, he "had a little bit too much love" and he "loved alcohol". I was happy to see him two years ago in a very emotional and fragile performance on Amsterdam's Rembrandtplein. He was extremely charming, positive, full of life, curious and friendly. The comments today from other Dutch singers, and average people on the street, say it all:
"he lived"
"he didn't care about yesterday or tomorrow, he lived today"
"all of Amsterdam was in love with him"
"i think we would all have wanted to swap our lifes with him"
May he rest in peace.
This song "Zing, vecht, huil, bid, lach, werk, bewonder" translates as "sing, fight, cry, pray, smile, work and admire"