Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Handen Schuddende Artsen

Wat een opschudding over het niet schudden van handen omdat die van de ander onrein zouden zijn! Nu klaagt een internist erover dat hij door het ontbreken van dit contact geen vertrouwen kan wekken bij de patiënt.
In het Verenigd Koninkrijk schudt een arts nooit de hand van zijn patiënt. Daar zijn alle handen vies. Bij de balies in de klinieken staan pompflesjes waar iedereen zich kan zuiveren van onverhoopt door anderen opgelopen vunzigheid – lees bacillen.
Ik haal daar dan maar mijn schouders over op.

Monday, February 07, 2011

In Praise of Parsnip

They arrive in a grocery bag, and I wonder: what on earth can I do with them, these old fashioned vegetables like parsnip. A. recommended roasting with potatoes, onions and carrots. It worked.
Then I remembered our trip to Florence last year. The Italians use an awful lot of vegetables raw.
So I peeled the parsnips, cut the thin part into juliennes, thinly sliced the thicker part in slivers and served them as an apetizer with humus from the local Libanese catering store.
Better than crisps! I swear!

Friday, February 04, 2011

Significant Other

Wife or husband-
Persons with whom one is married

Person who joins the spouses program, the kindergarten for Important Meetings.

Person who has a business relationship with a loved one.

Better Half
Said by a person who claims false modesty. He doesn't ever believe she is better, nor that he is only half.

Significant Other
The least meaningful term of them all! It may be the dog, or the gerbil, or the tick that bit me. Significant other reduces a person to a mere nothing, a term, no more.

How insignificant can one be?

Tuesday, February 01, 2011

Travelling by Public Transport

I’m growing older. I hardly notice it, day by day; even hardly year by year. But then the telltale signs appear. I has happened to me a few times now: a young person getting up for me in the bus: “Would you like to sit here, madam?”
I think of myself as quite fit. I bicycle regularly from one end of town to the other. I walk, I run upstairs a few times daily, and if necessary I will stand in a crowded train. No problem.
But I will always accept an offer of a seat in the metro. Why?
It holds a moment of connection with another person. It makes the other person feel good about herself, and I enjoy their grace too. I will also comment on it: “They say young people know no politeness anymore, but look at you! You are proving them wrong!”
And finally, at times it leads to conversations.
It brings friendliness back into public transport, and that makes the journey a joy!