In an attempt to accelerate the recovery of my achilles tendon injury, I underwent two Shockwave treatments; one in November and one in January. After each of those treatments, I was not allowed to walk for two days. For the 12 days after that, I was advised to “walk as little as possible, and as slowly as possible”. Knowing myself, I knew I had to find an external tool to keep myself from disregarding all pain and barge up and down the large Jan Schaefferbridge at the end of my street, to then do an aerobics video in my living room. File under: how I acquired this particular injury.
Inspired by a Hannah Witton video, I decided to buy a foldable walking stick that fit inside my purse. On a side note: there must be a difference between a cane and a walking stick, but I haven’t been able to figure it out and will therefore use both words when referring to the same thing. Anyway, this walking stick would both be supporting me and making sure I couldn’t walk faster than I should, but it would also signal to the outside world “I have difficulty walking, please don’t rush me”. Because The Netherlands in general and Amsterdam in particular is a stressed out mess.
Having lived here for the majority of my life, I am well aware of this fact, but I must say that every time I (due to illness or injury) am not able to keep up with the pace, it’s a shock. Amsterdam’s public space in particular is completely unsuited for anyone who has even a small mobility issue, let alone a large one. There’s bikes everywhere, curbs are often ridiculously high, elevators and escalators are regularly either broken or blocked by (you guessed it!) bikes, the traffic situation is often completely unclear. On top of that, most if not all Amsterdam pavements are wonky and far from smooth. I have been told that this is due to ground water level shifts and not because we are bad at laying pavements.
What also doesn’t help, are the almost constant renovations and works in various areas of the city. And of course the fact that after all this, a huge amount of tourists and a huge amount of people actually living here who are trying to get to work are thrown into the mix.
Karl Lagerfeld passed away. And despite – as a teen – being super impressed with his work ethos, his creativity and the fact that my favorite perfume ever (Chloé by Karl Lagerfeld, the discontinued 1975 edition) was released under his label, I can nowadays only agree with this article: Stop mourning oppressors: anti-condolences for Karl Lagerfeld.
Can a Night Owl Become a Morning Person? From personal experience: no. You can force yourself, with a lot of effort, misery and exhaustion, to become a little less of a night owl, but the best thing to do is to “just” find a career in which you don’t have to get up at 6 am. I really feel there should be more focus on this in high school during future career events.
The radical story of Patty Hearst. I don’t know about this one. Of course, the horrors transpired are atrocious and should definitely not be swept aside, but I have a very hard time listening to all the people in this documentary who very firmly claim to know exactly who she was, what she was thinking and why she did things in a certain way, and who seem to have little to no knowledge, let alone regard for the ways in which trauma affects a person.
This month flew by, and not only because I had to walk very slowly following my shockwave treatment on my achilles tendon. I still owe you all the “Get out of the house!”-post detailing my adventures walking with a cane, but first let’s get the monthly round up out of the way.
On my Goodreads you can see that I am participating in the reading challenge once again. I have again decided to read at least 12 books, as this is a manageable amount of books to read in between all the other stuff I do.
Read – Online
For the people that missed the “David Bowie is…” exhibit, there’s an app.
Ballet danser Sergei Polunin entire existence has been a huge mess for quite some time, which has been excused and sometimes even encouraged by many in the (ballet) world because he’s just being a “tormented artist”. The Paris Opera Ballet however is having none of it. I am very curious to see if these consequences will lead to change, but I’m afraid that he will continue to socially, physically and mentally destroy himself completely while his adoring fans keep applauding him. What a waster.
I didn’t listen to any English language podcasts this month for some reason.
Watched – Films and Documentaries
Surviving R. Kelly. Even as a music loving teenager living in a not so big town in the east of The Netherlands (yes, this was the 90’s, no, we didn’t have internet yet) I knew through people in the know that he was a mega creep who preyed on young teenage girls. So it’s safe to say that even back then, everybody knew. Nobody did anything about it though, because “musical genius”, whatever the fuck that means. Now everybody is shocked and up in arms, but will anything change? Will this finally be the end of R. Kelly abusing women, more specifically black teenage girls? Or will things just continue as they always have over the last 25+ years? Calvin Michaels has a lot of interesting points about this documentary series.