Saturday, January 29, 2011

Venlo Strangers - part three


Day three in Venlo and I first bumped into Femmy and her co-worker. They were on their lunch break but they still gave me some time.

Me - What are Dutch people like?
Femmy - They are cautious with strangers but more welcoming once they get to know them.
M - Are there any differences between Limburgers and other Dutch people?
F - Yes, I think Limburg has an inferiority complex. They feel looked down upon by the people from the Randstad, you know the four big cities in the Netherlands. We are more like France, Belgium and even Germany. People in the Randstad consider us to be foreign.

M - What do you like to do in your freetime?
F - I like to go out drinking with my friends?
M - Is that beer or tea?
F - These days I don't drink beer everyday, more often it's tea.


Me - Hi, I'm doing a project where I ask strangers some questions and then take their photo. Is this ok?
Martel - Well, I don't have much time.
M - Ok, there's only four questions, just give me a one word answer. My first question - What's your name?
Martel - Martel
M - Can you tell me some about the Dutch personality?
Martel - Open-minded
M - What's different about Limburgers?
Martel - Not open-minded
M - What do you like to do?
Martel - Art

Martel, I can't read your web address - (that's how I read it but it's not recognised)


Leon owns Purity Photography, a place where you can get professional studio portraits taken. He's friendly and I believe he's great at his job.

Me - Is there a difference between Limburgers and other Dutch people.
Leon 'Yes, there's a difference. People in Amsterdam are very international. There's a big difference, it's like two groups of people in this country.

M - What do you enjoy doing?
L - This, photography. I love it. And traveling, unfortunately it's expensive, so we can't do it that often. This picture (of a monkey) was taken in Bornea. We went with the WWF (World Wildlife Fund)

Renee - for some reason, I forgot to take your photo - sorry

For some reason, I forgot to photograph Renee, I believe it was because I was taking notes (for once).

Me - Can you tell me something that's typical about Dutch people?
Renee - They pay for themselves. They are self-centred (I believe Renee meant self-reliant)
M - Are you a Limburger?
R - Yes, but I study in Rotterdam at the moment.
M - Are Limburgers different to other Dutch people?
R - Yes, they're sweeter. We care more about other people. Here, everyone knows each other. In the rest of the Netherlands, it's me, me, me.
M - What do you like doing?
R - I'm at an art academy, I love drawing, building things, art stuff
M - Buildng things, do you mean sculptures.
R - Yes, I could't remember the word, thanks


Max and Lucas were shooting a mini-video with an Indian theme. They had an Indian model and were shooting in one of the main shopping streets in Venlo. They're at the university and they really like the Dutch.


Me - What are Dutch people like?
Lucas - Open-minded, friendly.
Max - Yes, tolerant is the word. You cross the border and the culture is different. We're only five minutes away from Germany here, but there's a big difference.
L - Yes, in the university in Germany if you have a deadline. That's it. No work handed in, no score. But here it's much better. You can say, it's my birthday, can I hand it a day later, the professors will agree.
Max - Yes, they are much more humane here.


Lina was working in a restaurant that I had lunch in. She has excellent English and later I saw her on the street and stop her, despite being short of time, she helped out. Lina is from the Hague.

Me - What's typical about the Dutch character?
Lina - They are open-minded, they don't take bullshit well and they are direct.
M - Are there any differences between other Dutch people and Limburgers?
L - There's a big difference. We like apple pie, they don't, we have cold food for lunch, they have hot. Other Dutch people are more direct, whilst here, they are politer. They are more laidback here. Also, I really have to listen hard as their accent is very different to what I'm used to.
M - What do you like to do?
L - creative things, meeting new people, I really like writing, the arts.

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