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Shelley Update from Holland!

I am so cheery now because I found a quarantined email from my friend Shelley in the Netherlands! For some reason, my ridiculous corporate spam-blocker-protect-us-our-lady-from-lawsuits-amen considered it “explicit” and BLOCKED it. Probably because she used the word “underpanties.”

So here is some news from Shelley, in her own words. Keep in mind even though she spent the first 18 years of her life speaking English, she rarely uses it now.

this previous year i found myself living in a huge house with a band. dutch guys that play traditional country and bluegrass music. i sing, play the washtub bass and i'm starting to play the mandolin. after 1 1/2 months of playing together, things took off like gangbusters. it was weird. we we're on television 3 times, the radio once and even played hotel new york (and that's the business!) in the harbor of rotterdam.

i make, what shall i call them, adornments? (hair barrets and pins and such) out of plastic bugs and recycled wire and all kinds of stuff. i've got this box filled with 'stuff' wine corks, the insides of computers, old wire, and a collection of ephemera (old labels, papers, wrappers)...just things that i find pleasing in form or texture or material, whatever. this stuff becomes jewelry and accessories or whatever i may need. my latest creation from the box of 'stuff' was doorknobs for my cabinets made from old champagne corks.

i go everywhere on bike and i love my bike. it's a classic and it's beautiful. here in holland the bike is used as a serious form of transportation. there are bike roads through all of holland and they are complete with stop lights for cyclists, information signs. it's fantastic. we also travel often two on one bike, one person on the standard luggage rack on the back. when we played music on the streets we all went with the bicycle. hans up front with the washtub bass which made him look like a homemade sailing vessel and all of us and our instruments in a row behind. it's was hysterical.

i'd rather never have to shop...i only buy basics in the store and then i buy most of them at one store (the hema) whose products are of good quality, reasonably priced and produced in a socially and, as much as possible, environmentally sound way. i buy almost everything secondhand at the secondhand market in the city on tuesdays and saturdays or at flea markets. and if i may say so myself i have a lovely wardrobe filled with absolute treasures from the past.

Huh. And in high school we were PRACTICALLY TWINS.