from the last 2 weeks

1. funny story: Jerome's mom said to his grandma "I have to tell you something about Jerome"
of course she got really nervous and thought it might be bad news.
but when his mother told her we will get married, she was relieved and said
"oh, that's ok, it happens! I thought you were gonna tell me something serious!"

2. Since I told some people about what I am doing in the next months and that I will travel, a couple people got mad and demanded for me to explain how I manage to travel so much and not work in a 'regular' job... I so tried to think about how I could explain to them what I am doing... but I realised I really cant explain it to myself... I mean I just do so much nearly random work, get involved on many levels with so many nearly random projects and I apply to very many residency and project calls and then sometimes I am accepted. And even though I don't have 'a job', I am always working many hours a day and like some magic and with a lot of help from the people in my life I sort of survive, very minimally. Its funny that this makes people mad, but I guess I can understand its confusing... I still can't really explain how it works out or what my plan is.... in some ways its very nice to not have plans and to move a lot but in another way its scary to think and never actually find out what is the purpose of what I am doing...

3. Amsterdam is really pretty and clean and quiet but I find this almost unsettling. Its like the whole place is sugar coated and when you are aware of all the brutal right-wing populist actions happening in the Netherlands right now, its pretty hypocritical and feels a bit like some kinds of 'calm before the storm'. It is so sugar coated in fact that even the aggression and nationalism that's still visible is wrapped in a 'nice' blanket. One African guy in a phone shop told me he didn't like the area he lived in because "there are too many immigrants"!

4. Also weirdly, in Amsterdam I got on a bus on morning, waved goodbye to my friend and started to walk to the back of the bus to buy a ticket and then i realised the driver was yelling at me in Dutch. I turned to him and said sorry I didn't understand and that I was on my way to buy a ticket. He was so mad and began to say in English "look miss, I said good morning to you and you totally ignored me... in THIS country we are polite and while you are here, you must be courteous to people in public places!" I was so shocked and told him "sorry, I don't speak Dutch and also I was in a rush to get a ticket and also I didn't want to bother you since you are in the midst of driving the bus!" He continued to yell at me about how rude I was so I finally just told him "look calm down, you're not my dad and its a waste of your time to get so offended because I did not notice you, I didn't mean any offense" and I just walked away into the bus. I find it completely baffling how someone who is supposedly trying to be 'nice' (saying good morning) can end up being totally mean and angry!

5. Note to anyone planning to get married : Getting married in Germany is pretty funny... you absolutely could not be spontaneous about it, no sudden eloping here. Also they ask funny questions including "Have you ever slept with another woman/man?" Very archaic structure.

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