Amersfoort is a beautiful City and I am proud of being an Amersfoorter. This year King Willem-Alexander celebrated his birthday together with His family in Amersfoort. I was lucky to be a tiny part of this whole movement of activities. I love being an activist, when it is the time to speak out during different events. This time it’s not about ME it was about US, the 132 Nationalities in Amersfoort, representing our Countries.
On king’s day, we were divided in two groups along the Zuidsingel: One to stand along the road and the other group to stand in a boat to welcome the King, Queen and their whole family. Many of us were excited to shake the hands of the King and Queen. It’s an opportunity in a lifetime. When we were in the boat, some were complaining that their dream of shaking hands with Queen Maxima was gone. Many had a lot of expectations. Yes, everybody had in mind to shake hands with royalty.
But when I saw that I had been chosen to be in the boat, I told other women to just have fun where we are because there was no guarantee that we were going to get our handshake. When the time came, there was music and we were having fun. You know, me and music I can’t stand still. So we danced and waved. And we did get our moment when the King came to wave at us and I was able to make eye contact and wish him a happy birthday. This was not caught on TV because the focus is on the King and not on us in the water. So we remained invisible, at the end it is the King who has a birthday!
So we played our small role in the two and a half hour movie of our king’s visit to Amersfoort. And I kept wondering why everybody wanted to shake hands with Queen Maxima or King Willem? And I thought that this was it, I would go back to join the WIJ Amersfoort party. So we went back to the boat station, but when we got out we could not move as exactly at that moment the royals were passing. And then the unexpected moment came... Queen Maxima approached us and shook her hand with me. We looked at each other and I knew she recognized me from the boat. Another great moment unseen again, no camera, no selfie...
If you would ask me how I feel now, I would tell you to be proud of who you are and where you come from. WE are one people and at some point we are are all connected to one another. My precious moment with our Queen is a good example of how in the end we all get what we deserve.