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Priorities

Two weeks ago I rented a car in Suriname for a few days. At first I was a bit anxious, because they drive on the left here and I had never done that before. But in the end it all went fine. If the steering wheel is on the other side of the car, you automatically also drive on the other side of the road. Continue Reading →

A small request

On this picture you can see Francois Abionie, a young filmmaker and photographer from Moengo, shooting a scene from his film Life in Moengo; A Teenage Pregnancy. I helped him with a bit of color correction and I’ve therefor watched the film numerous times. Continue Reading →

Everybody should have one

I’m glad to be back, though I’m busy as a bee.

I just had to write about this pleasantly portrayed man I found at a little shop in Rotterdam.
He’s still there, in a frame, for someone else to pick up, to be put up on a wall and to be looked at, maybe even admired. Continue Reading →

Not to be a nuisance

When you want to build a house on the same lot of land as your old home, you could of course demolish that home. But where then do you live in the meantime? Building a house can sometimes take years in Suriname. What you can also do is build the new house next to the old house. Continue Reading →

Leftovers

Even before I left for Suriname, people warned me: Be careful with your expectations. First it was my friend Steven who did that. He had spent three months in Moengo himself in 2012. After that Marcel Pinas, the founder of Tembe Art Studio, told me the exact same.
      Apparently expectations and Suriname are no great match.

That also became apparent last month when I attended a meeting in the district’s building in Moengo, behind the doors on this picture. There were more than forty chairs set up in the little meeting hall. The organizer of the meeting, Donovan Pramy, expected around twenty people to attend. In the end however only six of them showed up. Obviously Donovan was very disappointed.
      But too be honest, I was not. Because I also experienced the advantages of too high expectations. Because although only six people showed up, they had bought snacks for the expected twenty people. And I was one of the lucky ones who got to get home with the many leftovers.

      

Everybody is important

Two weeks ago I met a woman who works at the district’s office in Moengo. She wore a khaki uniform. I asked her if everyone who works for the district has to wear an uniform like that. She told me only officials do and then she showed me the insignia on her shoulder and explained me her rank. Continue Reading →

“Fa Aigo”

Since arriving in Moengo, I’ve met complete strangers on the street who knew my name. “Feiko!” They shouted at me while I was passing by on my bike. I was very surprised about that. Moengo may be a very small city and I may be the only white person here, but I did not expect for so many people to know my name that fast. Continue Reading →

I think he’s dead now

Whilst visiting the thrift-store in Rotterdam something caught my eye.
It was small, odd, strange.
Why? Why put it up there? Continue Reading →

Two Romeo’s

Not far from my studio a small group of construction workers are renovating a building. They’re all from Paramaribo. Two of them are called Romeo. When I ask if that’s not confusing, they tell me that they simple call each other by their last name. And their last names are not the same. Continue Reading →

Rihanna

When I looked out from the window of the airplane when we were flying over Suriname, all I saw was forest. As if the whole country was covered with a thick, green blanket. Continue Reading →

Overturned cars

These are the front pages of the Times of Suriname on two consecutive days. Nevertheless they look very alike. That’s of course because of the two similar photographs. Continue Reading →

Unrecognizable failures

According to the sign on this picture, a playground will be built here. For their 40 years anniversary, the port authority of Suriname donated money for a playground “for the benefit of the community of Moengo”. Continue Reading →

Right down to business

A day after my arrival in Suriname I bought a Surinamese phone. I surprised myself with that promptness. When I moved to Belgium last year, it took me two months before I finally got a Belgian number. And when I lived in Paris for 10 months in 2013, I only got a French number after five months. Continue Reading →

My least favourite thing

One of my least favorite things to do in life is to buy toilet paper. Unfortunately it’s also one of the few things that I’m responsible for in my household. Continue Reading →

Feeling welcome

When my girlfriend and me moved into our apartment, the first thing she did was to put photograph on the wall. It was a picture that she once tore out of a magazine and that showed a woman in several yoga positions. Continue Reading →

Baking powder

If Lev sends me a picture he always does that with a very short and straightforward description. He for example once described a picture with a table covered with sugar as “sugar”. And this picture of a collection of fake plastic vegetables he accompanied with the caption: “fake plastic vegetables.” Continue Reading →

Knowing Lev

There are very few certainties in life. Last year I wrote on this website that the only true certainty I found in life is that when you make pancakes, the first one always fails. But recently I came up with a second certainty. And that is that my parents will never ever surprise me. Continue Reading →

A lesson in impoliteness

A year ago, my girlfriend and me were traveling to the suburbs of Paris to buy a pair of second hand Nike Air Max. The woman who was selling them was waiting for us at a certain subway station. Continue Reading →

How to accomplish things

Last year I went wall climbing with my girlfriend. Whereas she had no problem scaling the walls, for me it proved much more difficult. When I was halfway a certain wall and I again found myself completely out of breath, I decided to call it a day. My girlfriend however refused to let me down. Continue Reading →

Getting rid of things

On one hand this car has been parked in an excellent way. I’m familiar with the narrow parking garages in Paris and I know how difficult it is to park your car in between another car and a wall. Especially when your car is a BMW of considerable size. Continue Reading →