A highlight, or so they say
WEDNESDAY, June 9 – Election day in The Netherlands. A celebration of democracy, a point I do my best to impress on Sander and Eamonn whenever there’s an election. You have a right to vote, to actively participate in the political process, and you’d be a fool not to take advantage of the opportunity. I give Eamonn the red pencil and let him color in the circle I’ve selected, and then push the paper ballot through the slit.
It ought to be a journalistic highlight. The build-up, the excitement of the final days of the race, the vacuum on the big day, leading up to the evening broadcasts with the results and the hectic sequel. A journalist’s dream, and even more important for me, as deputy-head of the biggest and best news organization in the country?
The truth is: It doesn’t interest me one bit.
The fact that I’ve acknowledged that lack of interest is probably the worst sign of all. I can’t help it. I’m not on my toes and I can’t get excited about anything. There’s no rush of adrenalin, no energy and I’ve resigned myself to the situation.
Which is strange. These elections were always the sort of thing I truly enjoyed. I could have made a real contribution to all the new projects where journalistic crossmedia are put to the test. I just trail along, and although I feel a few pangs of guilt, the end of the story is that I can’t swing it.
My head is simply overflowing. With pictures of Jennifer’s memorial bench, the medical developments, the up-coming trial, the confrontation with the motorcycle cop, Sander who is overwhelmed by the thought of the trial, and telephone calls about his music lessons, Eamonn who cycled home on his own for the first time, arranging for care for the boys, thinking about accommodation for the summer, the unpaid bills, the tax returns that should already have gone out.
To be truthful, I feel as if I’m losing my way. So what else is new?