This morning I did all things Dutch. I rode my bike for a few miles to the Metro dressed in the red, white and blue of the Dutch flag. Then I used public transportation (Dutch people do that a lot) and finally walked (Dutch people do that a lot too!) up hill and down in searing heat. While walking I mingled with many Dutch people, also dressed in red, white and blue or wearing a huge orange flower. Our destination? Arlington National Cemetery. Why?
Their Majesties King Willem-Alexander and Queen Maxima are in town for their first visit to the United States after ascending to the throne two years ago. And they were going to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier at 9 AM sharp. DC Dutch ("the best Dutch club in the greater Washington, DC area", according to its Facebook page) and the Embassy of the Netherlands in the US sent out mass invitations to the Dutch community to join the Ceremony.
So I went. I had not arranged for a press credential thinking that I could probably wriggle my way into the press corps but it wasn't as easy as I thought. In fact I was relegated to some spots far away from the action. Nevertheless I got some photos and in retrospect I'm glad that I was off the beaten path because the photos I got are more my style - not too posed, not too perfect and in candid style.
Tonight the Dutch Royal King and Queen will attend a baseball game, the Washington Nationals against the Toronto Blue Jays. A special section of the stadium is reserved for the Dutch community. I have tickets but kind-heartedly (not!) gave them to my youngest! It's going to rain "cats and dogs" with a potential flood warning in effect and I can't find my red, white and blue or orange umbrella!