My famous compatriot Anton Chekhov has once written a short story called “Cutie”.Olga, the protagonist, is a very sweet woman who loves her husband and does everything to satisfy him. Sadly, the man dies and Olga remarried. And it is the true love again, she obeys her husband from A to Z and adapts entirely to his lifestyle. Until her husband dies again and she remarries again. And again the ultimate love and obedience.
Cutie how Chekhov described her but then modern, so the extreme of feminine unconditional love and obedience, I came across in Amsterdam Zuidoost when I had just come to the Netherlands.She was my neighbour.
At first I found her just eccentric.I must honestly say that she has done her best to welcome me in her own way. When I had just arrived from Schiphol, the whole staircase was decorated with matryochka figures, flags of Soviet Union, posters with polar bears (do we have polar bears in Russia?) and Mikhail Gorbachev.
A few days later I came across her -a stately Dutch blonde dressed in beautiful colorful Indian sari, and she wore a red dot on her forehead.She saw that I had a plastic bag from the Muslim butcher downstairs with me and alerted me that meat food was murder. Then she asked if I ever wanted to eat together with her and her Indian friend. I also saw a shelf next to her front door with figurines of Indian gods.
After a few months I saw her at the Muslim butcher.She wore a beige djelleba and a black headscarf backwards. She bought lamb and couscous. I understood that she had another friend.
Therefore, I called her cutie, to the protagonist of the story of Chekhov.Later I saw her in a beautiful Chinese silk dress, in shalwar-kameez and even in a Mexican poncho. Her front door was also decorated differently every time -with posters of the Chinese wall and porcelain vases, a view of the Taj Mahal or a large sombrero.
One day, my door was called.I did open and I saw her, howling and with a letter in her hand.
“My father died!” she said.
“You come in, neighbour.Sit down and relax “.
I gave her a drink and took place next to her on the couch.I had to comfort this woman that I barely knew in one way or another. Tricky, because I’m on the cool side though. I often come up with practical solutions when someone just needs a warm embrace.
“Your father, what kind of person was he?”
I found it to be a good start to the conversation.I wanted to give her the chance to lose her story to which I could say that she had to try to remember the beautiful moments with her father. And that her father is no longer there but he was there so he remains in her heart, in her memory.
“My father?A motherfucker! Thank goodness, IE is finally dead! I hate him! “
And then it was quiet.I didn’t know what to say about it.
“When is the funeral?” I formally asked.
“Here is the letter”.
The letter was two months old.She didn’t have to go there anymore.
After a few months she was again reappearing.She wore an Egyptian galabiyya and hijab and decorated the whole house as an Egyptian restaurant “Kilobatra” -with figurines of pharaohs, bongs and camels. The man to whom this metamorphosis was due later came to live with her too. He was called Omar and he came away from Aswan. Long live the Internet caf茅s in every village of Upper Egypt. In the beginning everything was very romantic -he caught the pigeons and made “grilled Bigeon” on the balcony, turned the music of AMR Diab and sat all the time on his Apple Shiesha.
I wondered if Omar would stay long and we would stay alive surrounded by alabaster pyramids and a bronze Osiris and Isis, or that he would be replaced again by someone else.I did want to see cutie in a flamenco dress, or else in a Japanese kimono.
But it has ended differently.In their two-room flat came one day visit from Egypt. Family of Omar, namely his wife and 6 children. I don’t know if cutie agreed to that, at least I heard shouting and the sound of falling stuff. Maybe she threw the Chefren pyramid to his Mangokop, who knows. Eventually, Omar found a way to make her notice who was the boss. Well, one way… This way was purple blue and was sitting around her left eye as she finally hupled to the Muslim butcher to fetch lamb and okra.
A few weeks later Omar disappeared together with his family and I did not see him again.Cutie wore jeans only since then and bought Heineken at Super De Boer. So there was really a sa茂di from Ubbar EGYBT needed to heal her the ideal woman.
Shocking is a big word (I find it especially very funny).
My neighbor, when I was living with my parents, was just a few months with his family coming into the street (from The Hague to Wassenaar, so some small cultural differences).
The first summer it was a warm summer, so he went to wash his car….In a string. Yes, the neighbor decided on the street, in a thong, to wash his car…. Now he was also a bodybuilder, so yes, you can imagine how it looked.
My neighbor, who normally finds everything, had him ‘ explained ‘ that this is not appreciated (hey, idiot, you don’t run your bare butt on the street anyway?!)
From now on he washed his car in shorts….
I lived in a less good district of Groningen at the time.
Our neighbor had always been a separate type, which apparently had fun in all day in his only underwear to stand pool in the living room (the whole living room was seized by a large pool table, furthermore there was nowhere more room for it).On the tap of the cue and roll of the balls as he set up a new game, we didn’t really bother.
However, one day our wall suddenly dreaned.No soft vouchers, but really rock hard popping and dreaning. Our first thought was that the house would collapse, but soon it turned out that our neighbor was twisted: with 5kg weights, by a naked, screaming neighbor against the wall between our homes was thrown in. Not once, but half an hour, until the now warned police could convince him that it was a less good idea.
For a long time we heard nothing.The best man had a roommate by letting a room under, and on the normal pool-billiard sounds after there was nothing more wrong, the guy had gotten help and that seemed to go well.
Until the roommate suddenly stood with us on the sidewalk, with great panic in his eyes and voice: “It’s not going well, you have to be out of the house NOW!”
The neighbor had an episode again and had decided to turn all the gas taps in the house full, and throw the main gas seal piece with one of his training weights.Fire and police quickly alarmed and cleared the whole block, by the fire department all the street without gas put. It was in the middle of the winter, even once again.
In the end, the neighbor was then, again naked, drained by the police and I did not see him again…
Already a few years ago.
Was a few days before or after old and new, was the neighbor to blow the leaf.And her neighbor (my Overneighbor) suddenly throws fireworks to her, because otherwise he couldn’t work.
A little background information;
The neighbor lives there all her life and is already retiring, that neighbor is coming to live with his family in the street when I was somewhere around 7 years I’m guessing (am now 21).They have designed the house themselves and yes that is really a mega house compared to the other houses in the street. And he chose to set up his office on that side of the house. Have about a piece or 5 cars. He owns several companies and his wife as well.
Now I’m not trying to stereotype all the millionaires, but I think it’s striking that you don’t just walk down to ask if that leaf blowing can maybe later.Or if necessary, sit somewhere else in the house. The house is large and there is a lot of space that is not even used.
Most likely, my neighbours were the founder for the pruning of a lime tree on our soil.A fairly high, almost monumental lime tree, which is close to the street, was made smaller without notice by the municipality just a couple, he would pose a danger to their home. My dad told the city workers as well clearly the truth after which they left.
A few months later a summer storm took over, which pulled the lime on their side of the street and where a large branch was put in through the thatched roof.Despite our own halved tree, it felt somewhat like righteousness.