Whether I want to write a few lines about my love for the region? The region, the region, the region. If you repeat it often enough, it becomes kind of a crazy word. I mean, that applies for “hop shoots” as well – but that´s a whole different story.
The region: what is that, really? In the Netherlands the word is often misused to indicate everything that takes place outside the Randstad. But then, that Randstad, does it actually exist? In the region, which thus doesn´t really exist, it is used to indicate the urban agglomeration in Western Holland, as seen from Eindhoven, “north of the big rivers”. But the people in that Randstad don´t feel themselves to be a Randstad.
See, now we´re getting somewhere. The region doesn´t exist. I don´t live in the region of Eindhoven. I come from here.
I declare my love for here. For the countryside redolent of pig manure. For the soothing, sometimes lilting, sometimes gnawing dialect. For the instinctive aversion to authority. For the innate tendency to cooperate. For the Catholic character, even now that the churches remain empty: we simply confess it away. For this hideous city, which is understood above all by people from here, or newcomers who find their home here. For companies that make ultramodern telephones work, and public transport chip cards, also north of the big rivers and in Taipei. For the sausage rolls. For the people from here, who really are different from the people from over there. For the cafés, the little squares, the farms, the landscapes. For the miracle of Eindhoven.
The love for “here” is hard to explain, unless you’re from “here”. Incidentally, that also applies for “there”, but then they have their own “here”.