Typical Dutch

Dutch Honesty

A couple of weeks ago my friends and I went out to party, as we usually do in our new Dutch life. Like every Friday, the pub was crowded. My friends and I left our coats all together to be sure not to lose them. That day when we were leaving the bar, one of…

The following day we discussed what happened with some Dutch friends. They advised us to go to the bar and ask if the coat was there. Sometimes people take wrong coats and then they return them. This idea sounded ridiculous to me because when you lose something of value in Spain, you can start saving money to buy another to replace it. Anyway we had nothing to lose and we went to ask. The coat was not there. The waiter told us to come back during the next week and ask again. A week later we went back and the coat had appeared. A Dutch girl had taken it by mistake. When she realized it, she returned the coat and wrote a letter of apology to the owner of the coat for having inconvenienced them. My friends and I were surprised. In my culture such situations do not occur, let alone someone writing a note of apology. The truth is that my friend was very happy to recover her coat. Dutch people can be cold and distant in some circumstances but their honesty is incomparable. Now my friend would like to thank in person the girl who returned her coat, but the note was anonymous. So if you read this, thank you very much! It was a nice gesture and much appreciated. Celia Tardío Rodríguez. MSc student of Environmental Sciences

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