DUTCH INFLUENCES AT MANIFESTO DESIGN
Let me introduce myself, my name is Bianca and I am the new intern at Manifesto Design. After spending six months in the cold of Austria, I jumped at the opportunity to work for this lovely company in the always sunny Marbella.
Arriving in Spain was delightful, the weather as well as the people have been really nice and good to me. My colleagues at Manifesto welcomed me with open arms, making my time at the company really enjoyable.
But after spending time abroad, you start to appreciate the small things that remind you of home. For me that is The Netherlands, so having a fellow ‘Dutchie’ in the company makes me feel right at home. With the latest edition of Essential magazine, for whom Manifesto director Michel Cruz wrote articles, for a special Dutch edition, I thought it was time to stick to my roots.
When people meet me, the first thing they notice about me is how tall I am. ‘Wow, you are tall’ or ‘Long legs you got there’ are things I hear on a regular basis, and except for the answer ‘that is right’ there is not a lot for me say. Fact is, that the Dutch are the tallest nation in the world. Research from 2016 shows that Dutch men average 1,83m,whereas the Dutch women ‘only’ come second, after Latvian women who are 1 cm taller, with their height of 1,69m.
Talking to foreigners you tend to hear a lot of clichés about your native country. Well I do not speak for all Dutch people of course, but I have never worn wooden shoes, nor do we speak German. If we do it is because we have learned it. Prostitutes are there, looked after, having their own window and minimum age of 18 years old. But it is just in a couple of street, red light district in Amsterdam for example and in a few other cities. They are not walking around in the neighbourhood taking over the country. In fact you would only find them, if you go out looking for them and would they be there if there was no demand for them? The windmills, also true, not always used for their original purpose. Next to my secondary school stood a lovely windmill that the gym teacher liked to use for torture.
I never understood why I had to run away from the mill for 1km, only to run back towards the mill again. Instead of arguing every single time, I just had to write a paper about the purpose of windmills. I don’t know if you have heard about the weather in the Netherlands, 300 days of wind and rain guaranteed. We Dutch people notice this because we are a flat country with most of the surface below water level and we ride our bikes everywhere: even if we have to get the children from school or do groceries, or both. I even took my bike with me when I lived in Austria for six months. This is also where the purpose of some of the windmills comes in, in the past windmills were used for land reclamation, and with our dikes the Dutch are real water experts. That is one of the reasons why The Netherlands was asked to help, in many cases including water struggles, by many countries all around the globe.
However that is just a small part of what makes the Netherlands, there is so much more. I have not even mentioned the legalisation of soft drugs, how do I see the Netherlands, or all the amazing brands and people coming from here. Read my next blog for my opinion about the country I love so dearly and fun facts. For example, did you know we have more bikes in the Netherlands than people, especially in the capital city Amsterdam and every minute a bike gets stolen?