Monday, April 29, 2013

A Royal Note on the Netherlands

Tomorrow is a very special day in the Netherlands and I would like to share part of it with you in this special post. Every year, on 30th April a huge street party takes place in The Netherlands, specially in Amsterdam. It's the Koninginnedag, or Queen's Day, and it commemorates the Queen's birthday with a big party for all citizens of the Netherlands. Boats parade along the cannals, music bangs loud, there are thrift markets in almost every street and people have fun dressed in orange. But before going any further, I would like to introduce you to this very ordinary couple.

Posing at a random shop window

They met almost 15 years ago at a party and fell head over heels for each other. After a couple of years and some family issues they got engaged and married. She wore a very delicate and beautiful dress which would suit for a princess. They had three lovely daughters and lived happily ever after. And tomorrow they're becoming the King and Queen of the Netherlands. Ups, so ordinary are they not!

Source: Wikipedia

Willem-Alexander and Máxima met in Spain, during the famous Feria de Abril in Sevilla. It was love at first sight but not an easy start because her father had been minister for the dictatorship regime that took place in Argentina from 1976 to 1981. However, they stood against all odds and eventually got the green light to their relationship from the Dutch Monarchy and Parliament. They got engaged in 2001 and celebrated a fairytale wedding in 2002. It was almost perfect, if it wasn't becase her parents were not allowed in the country nor to attend the wedding because of her father political past. I can imagine how heartbreaking it must have been for her to be enjoying the happiest day in her life so far away from her beloved parents. And her tears that day, first in the church and later when they opened the reception's dance with a tango are fondly remembered by many Ducth people who hold Máxima close to their hearts since that day. Now Prince and Princess of the Netherlands, they have three daughters and lead quite a normal life. Last January, Queen Beatrix abdicated in favour of her son Willem-Alexander and tomorrow he will be crowned King of the Netherlands.

I have to admit that I am very impressed by all the affection and admiration the Dutch royal family receives from its people. They're highly accepted, with more than 60% of the people in favour of the monarchy and Máxima is especially loved and one of the most popular members of the family. But I don't think it's hard to love her at all! She's smart and very dedicated to her duties as a princess. She learnt Dutch very quickly and pays special attention to causes related with the integration of the inmigrant population in the Dutch society. She looks happy and healthy, has a radiant smile and a great sense of style (you can check more of her style here, sorry it's only in Dutch). So no wonder that the whole country is under her spell!

I come form a kingdom myself and I don't think I know anyone who supports the monarchic instution in the 21st century, let alone in Spain (but that's another story). I have always found fascinating the lives of kings and queens and I treasure my royal issues of Vogue and the Hello special on the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middelton. I think it's quite distinctive for a country to have a monarchy as head of the state. But I'm a rational person too and I also question what their role nowadays really is, how fair it is that a family enjoys so many privileges and how anachronical it is for these rights for pass from father to son (or to daughter in some countries). It seems more middle ages to me than modern times. But I also think that if current kings and queens have survived centuries of revolutions and upheavals there is no need to take them away now. Not as long as they really serve their countries.

But back to the Netherlands, tomorrow is a big day and I would like to wish Willem-Alexander and Máxima all the best for their upcoming years as king and queen. I wish them strenght to meet their royal duties and to never compromise their morals; I wish them wisdom to get through these difficult times we are all facing and to overcome the difficulties any monarchy will encounter on the 21st century; I wish them kindness to keep their people as close to their hearts as they have done so far; and I wish them happiness to continue smiling the same way they have as prince and princess. And of course, all the best for Queen Beatrix, who has been a good and caring queen and sure has have a rough last year since the accident of her son Prince Friso. May she enjoy many years of happiness and rest with her beloved family. Lang leve de Koningin! Lang leve de Koning!



  1. awesome!!!
    Have a fabulous time!

    Best wishes, Alexandra

  2. Qué buena tu reflexión sobre la monarquía en nuestros días y el caso de España...No sabía que esta pareja se hubiera conocido en la feria de abril de Sevilla, qué romántico. Bsins,wapa:)
    Disfruta del acontecimiento .

    1. Ya, es que España es un mundo aparte, pero tampoco quiero meterme en cuestiones políticas ...

      Yo tampoco sabía lo de la feria de Sevilla, pero en las últimas semanas no había revista en Holanda que no contase la vida y milagros de los nuevos reyes jejeje

  3. Fabulous post Irene! I'm happy for them. I've always been fascinated with Royal Life. They're a beautiful family.

    1. Thanks, Kim!

      I also find royal families somewhat fascinating, even if a bit old-fashioned.

  4. Their love story is touching (love at first sight and against all odds)and theirs would make a great movie. Have a festive celebration and a wonderful week, Irene!

    1. You're so right, I also thought it would be a nice story for a movie ... maybe in the upcoming years!


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