Happy Birthday, King Orange!

King's Day

Dear King Willem-Alexander,

I would like to thank you for inviting me to your birthday party in Amsterdam this year.  You’re a man after my own heart.  If I was a king, I would also make my birthday a national holiday, encourage everyone to dress in orange (or, a color appropriate to my name), allow everyone to sell things in the street without requiring a license, and make sure there are great big parties.

Plus, “King’s Day” is the perfect name for it!

Kings Day Amsterdam church Dutch flag

Sorry for my late response.  I know it was on the 27th of April, but I haven’t had the time to write you this note.  As a busy king, I’m sure you can understand that sometimes things just come up.

I was advised not to participate in the “King’s Night” activities since my more experienced friends told me it’s tough to wake up for the street celebrations the next day.  I also didn’t see any formal events in Amsterdam, but I did watch your ceremony in Dordrecht on TV.  You have a lovely family, and please pass on my best wishes to your wife and daughters.

The highlight of my day was buying two small chairs from a “young boy” who was selling things on a little street.  He actually seemed non-existent, but his “mother” claimed he was the actual salesman, and she told us that he had simply wandered off to play with other kids.  I am skeptical about this, and I think she just wanted a better story about why she was selling her old dinosaur toys and plastic spacemen.

Kings Day Amsterdam street market

So, same time next year?  I’ll see you then, when you’re another year older and wiser!

I hope we’ll actually get to meet say hi to each other, but if not, I’m sure I’ll enjoy spending my time with all the lovely citizens of your kingdom.

Your new friend,


P.S.  I always share a word of the day from the country where I am, so I included that below (but, I assume you already know this one…)

Kings Day Amsterdam crowded street

Dutch Word of the Day:


This is the Dutch name of “King’s Day,” and it’s pronounced “Cone-ings-doch.”  April 27, 2016 – be there or be square.