Navigating faith, love, and life in the Netherlands

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

There are some things not worth fighting against....



...but I still feel defeated.

Why, for instance, is my doctor's office closed for two weeks straight?  (Yes, I know it's the school summer holiday, but people still get sick...) Without anyone even filling in?  I have a cough that's a bit wheezy-sounding, and a few other questions I wanted to ask during my "alone time" this morning.  (Munchkin is at the babysitter's.)  There's a phone number for "life-threatening" things, but otherwise I have to wait til the 25th.  Grrrr.....

Then, when I was in Blokker, I needed to use the bathroom.  There was none in sight, but I knew there had to be one available for the employees.  I didn't want to leave the store and cycle all the way to and from Prenatal (free bathrooms there by the way).  Rather inconvenient in such a time. "Mevrouw, mag ik de WC gebruiken? Ik heb het echt nodig."  ("Ma'am, may I use the restroom? I really need it.") She shook her head no.  Grr....

I wish I had had the guts to challenge her - "Why?" or "What if someone really had a medical issue with their bowels or bladder?  Would you turn them away too?"

I hate that my American driving license isn't good enough for the Dutch government.  If I had come here as an expat, having received a job offer, I could just swap the licenses over - no driver's ed needed.  But noooooooo, I have to pay €35/hour for lessons (plus about the same amount for each of the 4 times I took the theory test).  Beyond that, I have to have a medical clearance before I can register for the practical exam - and that appointment isn't until mid-August.  Never mind that I will be driving every day for 14 days in the US coming up.  It just means that on the weekends when I COULD drive and run errands, I am not allowed.  Stupid stupid stupid.  I'm jealous of these American expats who come and get that privilege - and then leave after a couple years.

As I cycled away from the center, I felt like I couldn't look at any of the faces around me.  They're all complicit in this system.

People keep asking, "Kan je een beetje wenen?"  Not always.  In this moment, the answer is a resounding NO! I know the rules - and Dutch people LOVE rules - and even if I were to fight against it, it wouldn't change anything.  I'd just be running into a wall over and over again.