On the 27th of April, His Excellency the Ambassador of the Netherlands and Mrs. Anne Veldkamp, held a reception at his Residence in Herzliya Pituach, in honor of the National Day of the Netherlands. Amongst those at the event were key Ministry of Foreign Affairs persons, members of the diplomatic and consular corps, and of course many dignitaries.
On the pool side grass, at the Ambassador’s Residence, a carriage containing Dutch cheeses, sweet summer fruits, Heineken beer and Herring from Holland, served the guests who came to celebrate the King’s day. The national color of Holland, orange, was the theme that embellished the sunflowers and the house. At the entrance and living room there were Van Gogh paintings (the Ambassador lives in the same village Vincent Van Gogh lived and painted).
While the guests were mingling at the poolside, The Ambassador read his address to the king of Holland:
"To His Majesty the King
Equally on behalf of representatives of the Dutch community in Israel, of Dutch military forces serving in missions in and bordering Israel, and our many Israeli guests gathered here today, I extend you heartfelt and respectful congratulations.
The next year of your Reign will once more see intensive contacts between the Netherlands and Israel, including visits by government ministers, members of parliament, business leaders as well as representatives of knowledge institutions and civil society organizations. The ties are strong and diverse, to which you have contributed since the beginning of your Reign.
Your Embassy will continue to work actively for the enhancement of these ties, with a focus on innovation and new generations. In accordance with your Government’s policy and our position within the European Union, we continue to endeavor to reach a durable peace between Israel and the Palestinians and security for the State of Israel in this turbulent region.
We wish you, Queen Maxima and your daughters happiness and prosperity, for your family, your Reign and your Kingdom.
Your Ambassador to Israel"
The Ambassador also said that this is his last time in Israel. In the summer he is moving to become the Ambassador of Holland in Greece. He surly will miss Israel and his many Israeli friends.
About The King's official birthday…
The King’s official birthday (King’s Day, Koningsdag) in the Netherlands, is celebrated each year on April 27 with parties, street markets, concerts and special events for the royal family. In many towns and cities, particularly Amsterdam, Arnhem, Utrecht and The Hague, the King’s Day celebrations begin on the evening before the day. Some people set up stalls to sell second-hand goods and King’s Day themed products in many city and town centers.
The day features official musical performances on King’s Day. Many people spontaneously sing "Het Wilhelmus". This is a poem written in 1574 and describes the life of William of Orange (William the Silent) and his fight for the Dutch people. It is written as if William of Orange is introducing himself to the Dutch people. Versions are also played by bands performing at King’s Day events and on radio stations.
Each year, the royal family visits one or a few places on King’s Day. They are entertained with displays and performances around local historic events. Royal family members generally join in with the games in a good natured way and greet thousands of people who turn out to see them.
The two national anthems were played and the Ambassador raised a toast and wished that God will bless Holland and Israel.
Photo by Silvia G Golan