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 ".