May 25, 2009

Dutch Festival 09

Remember how in my last post I mentioned that I have never really been that patriotic in life? Well, now that I think about it... I have been more proud of the fact that I am half Dutch Indonesian! This weekend, we joined my family at the Annual Dutch Festival in Long Beach. Now, many of you may be saying, 'how can you be both Dutch AND Indonesian?' A brief explanation follows :)

Way back in time, Indonesia was ruled by the Dutch (from the 1800s up to the point that my Grandparents were married and starting their family -- late 1940s!). I am not exact on the date/years, however soon after my Grandparents were married, the Dutch gave Indonesia their independence and allowed them to then choose their nationality... they could stay in Indonesia and be citizens there or go to Holland and become a Dutch citizen there. My Grandparents took my mother (and I think my Aunt Maureen had been born then too) to Holland where they then became Dutch Indonesians. ((MOM, please correct any parts that I may have mixed up :)

It was very cool to hear this story from my mom, that this is also why they speak Dutch versus Indonesian. I think it is very important that we know these things about where we came from. After my Grandfather passed away last December I have been more inclined to read about what his experience would have been like growing up in Indonesia. It is very interesting to read what the Dutch did to keep rule over Indonsia (what they are calling colonialism)... I also know that my grandparents were both in a labor camp while the Japanese were there in the 40s... a horrible experience, I am sure. I always wanted to hear more about it from them when I was younger but didnt really know how to ask... my Grandma was reluctant to share.

Anyhow, thank you for taking the time to learn alittle about this part of my life that I am so proud of. I look forward to learning more about it all so that I can share with my future children, as well. Here is a slideshow of our fun time at the Dutch Festival (by the way, the FOOD is the main attraction at these things... sometimes you dont get a lot of these dishes but once a year at these gatherings!! -- it was all very delicious and as you can see, even my part Polish husband agrees that it is better than Borscht!!!)


Leslie said...

Your family history is awesome. I never learned much about my mom's side of the family, my uncle used to tease about a younger son in England getting banished to the Caribean so I never knew if he was serious, am learning more about my dad's side and try to teach my children what I know about their dad's side of the family.


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