I learned that in Dutch, people tend to use verbs expressing actions (e.g. stand, lie, sit) rather than ones of static status (e.g. be) if they can. For example, one is more likely to ask Where is your book standing? – Waar staat uw boek? instead of phrasing it as Where is your book? – Waar is uw boek?. Such choices fascinate me. It is perhaps a linguistic indicator for their being physically active. I read somewhere that Dutch are encouraged to get out of the house and do things as much as possible. They are undoubtedly out and about a lot in their bikes. They cycle to offices for work, supermarkets for food, coffeeshops for weed, cafés for beer, and literally anywhere else. Kids can either be put in the front like a windshield or be trusted to ride their own tiny bikes, with which they will exhaust themselves keeping up with their parents. At first, I found it absurd. The poor little ones! But perhaps it let kids grow stronger and more independent. Either way, they definitely grow up being confident bikers. Getting off bikes, there are a lot of people running, jogging, dog walking, or socializing in parks. For the last three months, I have run regularly at various times of the day here and there. Even in the coldest, wettest, darkest and windiest winter days, I have companions. It is encouraging. Dus ik laat mijn boek op de plank staan, en ga voor een run.
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