April 29, 2012

A ‘Truman show’ village for dementia sufferers

Filed under: Health by Branko Collin @ 2:16 pm

elderly_manThe international press have been giving a lot of attention lately to a nursing home for dementia sufferers near Amsterdam that tries to give its inhabitants a sense of living their ordinary lives.

The 152 patients living in De Hogewey, Weesp still go to the supermarket, the hairdresser and to a café, even though they generally have no idea what is going on.

Writes the Daily Mail in an extensive report:

A brainstorming process began and by early 1993 they had the answer. Yvonne says: ‘In life, we want to live with people like ourselves. We want to be surrounded by people we would choose to be friends with those with similar values, similar jobs and with similar interests.’

The result was a ‘village’ with several lifestyle options. The job of doctors and carers is to make those seven worlds as real as possible: through the way the home is decorated, the food, the music, even how the table is laid.

The lifestyles reflect the world outside the gates. The ‘Gooise’, or aristocratic Dutch; the ‘ambachtelijke’, or working class; the ‘Indische’, or those of Indonesian origin who migrated to Holland from the former colony; the ‘huiselijke’ or homemakers; the ‘culturele’ who enjoy art, music and theatre; the urban sophisticates who relish city life, and the ‘Christelijke’, for whom religion is paramount – whether Christianity or another faith.


The posher ‘residents’ dine off lace tablecloths on a table laid with fine glass and porcelain; meals are brought to the table by ‘servants’ who remain on standby in the kitchen. Their relationship with the residents is deliberately formal and submissive. Conversely, the working-class residents prefer meals to be casual, taken with their helpers or ‘family’, maybe in front of the TV.

See also this German video by 3Sat:

Although it costs approximately 5,000 euro per month to stay at De Hogewey, most of that is paid for by the insurer, dementia being covered under Dutch universal healthcare (there is a small copay of 100 euro per month, according to the video report).

Note: stays at nursing homes are generally covered by a nationwide policy (PDF, Dutch) that lets homes charge for extras such as cable television, laundry services and so on. I imagine the same goes for De Hogewey. In other words, there may be extra costs, but these are typically and easily covered by the state pension that everybody over 65 gets (AOW).

See also:

(Photo by Frank Mayne, some rights reserved)

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September 3, 2010

Rich Dutch housewives show a hit in France

Filed under: Film,Shows by Orangemaster @ 10:36 am

The French version of the hit Dutch television show and Desperate Housewives copycat ‘Gooische Vrouwen’ (‘Women of het Gooi’, a rich neighbourhood of Hilversum where Dutch TV makers used to live’) is known in France as “Jardins Secrets” (Secret Gardens), is dubbed rather than subtitled and is a hit. (The Dutch subtitle shows from other countries (cheaper), while big countries like France and Germany dub everything (laws and such).

Back in 2008 when we first posted about it, “some 2.3 million people watched the first episode, which translates to a market share of 26.6%. TF1 broadcast the first three episodes back-to-back, and later during the evening the market share rose to 31.6%.

French television station TF1 is super sloppy with the introduction of the show on their website, as they claim it’s Danish. Dutch people commented in good French with a polite explanation, but the information was copy pasted from another site with the same mistake. The blurb even implies that Amsterdam could be in Denmark! Ouille, ça fait mal !

As well, De Telegraaf tells of Linda de Mol (pic) who in the dubbed French version has a nasty low class accent, which now has me all curious. It is ironic since people of het Gooi have a specific accent that is associated with money and a rolling ‘r’. The cast has also received criticism regarding the Gooische Vrouwen film that is coming out for the excessive drinking that takes place in the film. De Mol explains that the series was sold to Russia and China and expects nothing less that a lot of drinking in their versions as well. After all, it it’s television, not reality.

(Link: De Telegraaf. Source photo: RTL)

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November 14, 2009

Best Children for Children’s song of the past 30 years

Filed under: Music by Branko Collin @ 1:41 pm

This song from the Kinderen voor Kinderen choir (‘Children for Children’) was voted their best song last Saturday, public broadcaster VARA announced according to Volkskrant. The song is called ‘Op een Onbewoond Eiland’ (‘On a Desert Island’).

My personal favourite, Waanzinnig Gedroomd (‘Dreamed Outrageously’, ik heb zo WAA-WAA-WAA-WAANZINNIG gedroomd) came in second. Both songs were written by Tony Eyk who wrote Van Kooten en De Bie’s Ballen in Me Buik and the Studio Sport theme song, which everybody knows.

Not too shabby is ‘Ik Ben Toch Zeker Sinterklaas Niet’ (‘Do I Look Like Saint Nick?’), the video of which is definitely a blast from the past. You can pinpoint the exact year just from the fact that it has a Commodore 128 home computer in it.

Kinderen voor Kinderen was a choir initially founded by VARA for charity, the idea being that the proceeds of their records would go to help children in poor countries. It was heavily ridiculed for the snooty, Gooi ‘R’ that the children in it used, and which sounds almost exactly like the British word ‘air.’ You can hear a sample at the start of this Kinderen voor Kinderen parody Ik Heb Die Zwaar Bekakte R Niet (‘I Lack That Snooty R’) by fake children’s choir De Boksbeugeltjes (‘The Brass Knuckles’).

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April 4, 2008

Housewives to conquer France?

Filed under: Shows by Branko Collin @ 11:07 am

France rarely looks to the North—or indeed to the East, South or West. But last week, the French massively tuned into TF1, their most popular TV channel, to follow the lives of four Dutch bored and rich housewives, as portrayed in Gooische Vrouwen, a vehicle for Linda de Mol (photo) and a Desperate Housewives clone. The series is broadcast in France as “Jardins Secrets” (Secret Gardens) and is dubbed. According to ANP, 2.3 million people watched the first episode, which translates to a market share of 26.6%. At that time the show had competition from “FBI portés disparus” and “Les nouveaux voisins.” TF1 broadcast the first three episodes back-to-back, and later during the evening the market share rose to 31.6%.

Gooise Vrouwen means “Women of De Gooi,” the latter being the rich neighbourhood of Hilversum where Dutch TV makers used to live. The name literally means The Shire, but is now synonymous with decadence. The saying goes that if you want to make it in Dutch television, you have to sleep “on the Gooi’s matress”, meaning to sleep with somebody influential in TV land (in lieu of talent or skills). It’s the Dutch equivalent of the casting couch, if you like.

Via Z24 (Dutch). Source photo: RTL.

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