“Ach kassian, het is vorbij …”

I’ve been listening to my Wieteke van Dort‘s CD – quite an unusual choice for Saturday morning, I suppose. Most people have never heard of Wieteke van Dort – I heard her “Geef mij maar Nasi Goreng” when I was a highschool student at St Aloysius in Bandung. Every year, the school holds three nights of students’ performances – and I remember vaguely that a group of students created a skit out of this song. Somehow, I brought the song up during my many conversations with my friend Sjoerd in Amsterdam – and he knew what I was talking about. Hehehe. So, when I went to Amsterdam in 2002, we went to the Fame CD store in Kalverstraat and I bought myself the double-disc Wieteke van Dort 25 Jaar als Tante Lien Jubileum CD. *grin*.

She sings with a mock Javanese-Dutch accent that is perfect to the ‘t’ – I can certainly picture old ladies back in Indonesia who slipped in some Dutch words with the same pronounciation. Her songs are mostly about the tempo doeloe (“the old times”) when the Dutch still ruled Indonesia. So, some of her songs are lamenting about the loss of Indonesia, the loss of idyllic time – she also sings some old Indonesian tunes such as Bengawan Solo, or Burung Kakaktua.

Here’s one clip of Wieteke van Dort as Tante Lien, singing “Arm Den Haag” (Poor Den Hag) describing Den Haag as a widow, for losing Indonesia. The song has many references to Indonesian food (tahoe petis, sajoer lodeh, and so forth).


I don’t know why I like old-fashioned stuff and history – I might’ve mentioned before that maybe it’s because my sense of history was severed as well – it seems pretty mess up that I’m a pure blood Chinese, born in Indonesia, having Indonesian habit and tendencies, with Chinese ethics and mentality, but with the logic and way of thinking of the western culture. No wonder I like to build my sense of history, building a version of history that I see fit for myself: the creation of old-style European corner behind the garage, loo walls plastered with old advertisement reproductions in a much loved house built in 1940’s.

Well, I’ve finished listening to my Wieteke van Dort CD, I’m now listening to my Delirium CD – much more modern and atmospheric. I’m off to take a shower and may walk to the tramstop and catch the tram to the CD to see the Garden Show at Veale Garden today. It’s going to be a warm day today: 32C so I’ve watered the plants and have done my first batch of laundry.

Published by fuzz

I've finally relented to the lures of blogging - and for those who care, well, I'm a self-confessed geek who's a wanderer at heart, who thinks and analyses too much, and who's trying hard to hold on to his 7-year old inner persona.

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