I’m in the Basque country for three weeks now and I see a lot of things that are different than in Holland. Because I think it’s very funny, weird of interesting I will tell you about it. And try to explain the differences like I see them, so this is my opinion. Please let me know how you think about it. Witch is the ‘better’ country?
‘Gezellige’ Basques and ‘Egoísta’ Dutchmen
This Saturday I was invited to a harvest party. My teacher Joxe has a sister who had a hectare of white grapes and it was time to pick te grapes so the famous Basque Txakoli wine could me made from it. Every year they invite people to help them whit picking the grapes and to thank them, they have a nice dinner whit food, wine, music and dancing.
There where a lot of people helping whit cutting bunches of grapes and putting them in to crates. About twenty five volunteers consisting of young and old, women and men and strong or not so strong where helping. They didn’t want money or help just for a hour. No, everybody began at 10.00 a.m. whit picking and cutting.
In Holland these kind of situations are rare. Dutchmen don’t want to do things for free and certainly not for a stranger. The first thing my boyfriend asked me after the party was: “And did you get paid?”
For Dutch people it’s very normal to hire people to help you whit harvesting you fruits or plants. The people they hire are cheap workers like students or people from Poland or Rumenia. Or just let your kids do the work. And invite people you don’t know to a party? Well maybe if they are friends of friends that is possible but totally strangers, now we wouldn’t do that.
And a very big differnece are the grapes. In Holland we don’t have a lot of wine farmers. Roughly a hundred farmers grow grapes for wine. A Famous Dutch wine is for example Regent Barrique from a wine farm in Goesbeek.