Greek radio producer Nikos Koulousios is surprised by how much the Dutch love their kings and queens.
How did you end up in the Netherlands?
I came on an Erasmus student exchange programme and then continued and completed my studies in The Hague and Amsterdam.
How do you describe yourself – an expat, lovepat, immigrant, international etc – and why?
I am a citizen of the world. With a lap-top and a good internet connection, there are no real borders any more. I feel like we are moving towards a time where you can ‘live and/or work’ in any city of the world without being physically there.
How long do you plan to stay?
I am waiting until everything I have invested in here in Holland starts paying off.
Do you speak Dutch and how did you learn?
I speak Dutch, but not on an everyday basis. I did some courses and conversation lessons.
What’s your favourite Dutch food?
What do you miss about back home?
The way people care about each other and support each other. The humility of a society that is not as money-driven as the Dutch one. I miss the fact that NOT everything comes with a price… I miss the generosity of the Greek spirit. And the Greek hospitality.
How Dutch have you become?
I have developed a bi-cultural mind. I can function well within the norms of the Dutch culture but my intention was never to become Dutch. Assimilation is not a goal for me.
What’s your top tourist tip?
Read the history of the creation of the Dutch state, do not tip a waiter unless you are really happy with the servics, ask for better service when you see sloppiness, ask for good value for your money, don’t just eat French fries.
Tell us something surprising you’ve found out about the Netherlands
I was surprised to find that the Dutch build their own land and that they love their kings and queens so much.
If you had just 24 hours left in the Netherlands, what would you do?
I would like to see Holland from above. I would rent a small plane or an air balloon and hope for a clear blue sky.
Nikos Koulousios has been in the Netherlands for 14 years. He has a radio show Hellas Pindakaas