Carol Bontekoe

This blog has been keeping track of my adventures since 2004. The stories and the adventures have come from my college dorm room to Uganda, Peace Corps Kyrgyzstan, learning Dutch in the Netherlands to living in the wilds of Homer, Alaska. I went back to school in Amsterdam to study Theaterwetenschap (Theatre Science) at University of Amsterdam. And now my adventures as a Fruit Fly, a Sexy Unicorn, and creating a movement with Team Sparkle in Chicago.

Thursday, January 17, 2008


Maybe it was Peace Corps. The first two months they drill into your head that half your job is to intergrate into your community. Or it could be growing up in a small town and being an athlete and a member of just about every club out there. I don't know what it is but something in me makes me what to come involved in the community I live in. In my smal villge here in the Netherlands I haven't become as involved as I'm used to. Until now I thought I was some how sliding under the radar. The only thing I did in the community was play volleyball with the 60± crowd of ladies. Oh, and the butcher always chats me up. However this past Saturday night I had to go to the town hall. It became The Netherlands version of wall Drug for me.
Wall Drug you know what that is?
It is a crumy lil town in South Dakota but starting hundreds of miles away there are signs proclaiming the greatness of Wall Drug by th time you get into double digits miles away you have to go to Wall drug. Wehn you hit single digits your brain is about to explode with curiousity.
For the past month everywhere I have gone has been advertising Grote Bingo(Big Bingo) for January 12th. Even if I was shopping in another town or my gym in another town had the sign. So, this Saturday came and I had been thinking about Grote Bingo for a long time. I had nothing planned so I put on my Fryslan scarf my bright pink shoes and I walked into town. I figured I play volleyball with old ladies, at least ne of them has to be playing bingo. I was very relieve when I wlked in and saw Tjsetke. She seems to be one of the only ladies from ym teams who always goes out. I sat with her and her daughter. I was quickly embaressed as I stood up shooting Bingo just to have Tjsetke pull me back down and tell me that I infact don't have a Bingo. I have been playing Bingo my whole life I know a bingo when I see one. What I didn't understand is that you had to have a specific Bingo to win. I was forced to just wave the reader off as he kept asking if I really did have a Bingo. My low key status was blown by one shout of Bingo. Later on I thought I had a Bingo and hesitated to shout Bingo because f the last time. But Tjsetke told me I did have one and encouraged me to run up there. So, I shouted Bingo. Everyone gave each other a look like "I'm sure." They reviewed my card longer and slower than they had anyone elses. When they informed me that I had one a brand new smooth maker(blender with a cool spout in it) I lost all Dutch reserve and my Americaness came shining through as I jumped into the air, pumped my fist, and shouted, "Yes!"
I sat quietly the rest of the time eating chips and rinking a hieneken.
Apparently I was never as under the rador as I thought I was and this past Tueday comfirm it. On Tuesday my boss Rob had to go to a meeting for the parents of the kids in the school. I guess I was all people could talka bout. A mini celeb here in Oudemirdum. They were talkign about how my Dutch was coming long how I played Voleyball on Wednesday, my Bingo playing skillz, amongst other things. I guess now that I know that De Au Pair Van Lucas(the au pair of Lucas) is better known thn I had thought there might be many more Bingo nights in my future. And who knowns maybe I'll even manage a sentence sometime that isn't covered in my thick American Accent.


  1. becky said...

    love the wall drug reference ;) i've actually been there!!