Friday, August 07, 2009

The nice mevrouw

Word of the day: mooie (pronounced mo-e-uh) = nice (and if you're anything like me, you won't be able to say the name of mooie in telawi the malaysian way anymore once you know how it's actually pronounced)

I walked around the city of Rotterdam on my own for the first time today, and it was good!

I finally felt like I was on a holiday, seeing the city for the first time, kinda. I'm usually with Schrobbenmaster so we'd be talking and I wouldn't be looking around much. So today was a sort of eye-opener for me.

Went to de Bijenkorf, the department store, to buy another fluffy bath towel. Walked around quite a bit and looked at their stuff, which were quite nice. But it's the people in there that are really nice... well, the cashier I had.

She was a mevrouw (older woman) and spoke to me at length at first in Dutch. I only caught one word - Engels - which means English. So I thought she guessed I spoke English. Until she spoke to me at length again in Dutch. Then when I told her, "Sorry, I speak English", she said "Oh!" and started chatting to me about how nice the combination of my purchases were. And helping me fix an undone thread in my towel, then checking it again to make sure I purchase something nice.

I then told her that I wanted some items wrapped as a gift, and she put so much effort into folding and arranging the items, I felt touched. And wanted to tell her "Heel mooie!", hoping it was the correct thing to say, but in the end, I didn't get a chance to because she was so full of "There you go, it's really nice, thank you so much, see you again, have a good evening, bye!" that I couldn't get many words in.

So, a really great experience for me, and while at first I didn't like the shops because they looked so cold and uninviting compared to English shops, the people in them make up for it by being genuinely warm and helpful, when they could just be courteous and distant.

Off to watch Public Enemies tonight! Woo!

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