‘I live in an owner-occupied apartment in the Alexanderpolder. It is nice to live here, green and quiet. I often go for a walk around the Kralingseplas. And I cycle to the center of Rotterdam in fifteen minutes. My father passed away last year, so I now take care of my mother a bit. He lives five minutes from here. My parents were together for 45 years, so it’s a big transition for her. She is not sick, but needs extra attention.
“I love to read, especially management books – I also review them. I’ve always been a bit nerdy. I like to keep learning and developing. I’ve sorted an entire library by color.
“Sometimes I also read a novel, but otherwise mainly books from which I can learn something for my work or for myself. I want to be the best version of myself, a little better every day.
“I work as a consultant for Noordhoff Academy. We advise schools on the professionalization of education. This may concern, for example, the quality of the assessment. We also have a learning platform, StudyTube, where teachers can train online.
“In addition to my full-time job at Noordhoff, I also work as a freelance consultant. I advise companies on further training of employees, or how they can map out a certain business strategy. That freelance work costs me a maximum of 15 hours per week, so in total I often work 55 hours per week. I have no problem with that at all, I have a lot of energy.
“Combining work and private life is very easy. It intertwines in an organic way. I often sit on the couch in the evening working on my laptop. That comes naturally, because I like my job!”
“I am interested in technology, artificial intelligence and big data. Many people see these developments as a danger; you also had that with the advent of the word processor. But you better embrace it, I think, and say: what can we do with it? How can you use a tech development as a company?
“To give a simple example: a restaurant can use data technology to see exactly which dishes and drinks are the most popular. Such data can help you become more productive, efficient and profitable.
“My great passion is traveling, in all kinds of ways. Sometimes as a luxury cat and sometimes as a backpacker. I also have an alter ego, Dora The Explorer. In my daily life I wear heels and nice clothes, but when I travel, I turn into Dora The Explorer. That’s what I call myself on social media.
“I always go four, five weeks and have already seen sixty countries. I would very much like to go to India, where the roots of my ancestors. I am Hindustani, or Surinamese with Indian roots.
“During the pandemic, I lived and worked in Suriname for two years. That’s where I was born, our family moved to the Netherlands in the eighties. It was lovely to be there during the lockdowns. I worked there as a talent & development manager for an international organization and I really enjoyed it, but I still missed the Netherlands. Moreover, Suriname is quite isolated, which is not convenient if you like traveling as much as I do. Traveling from the Netherlands is very easy.
“I was married until four years ago. We were together for twelve years, but eventually grew apart. Luckily we are still good friends. I haven’t had a longer relationship since then, things of a few months at the most. Ultimately, I would like to find a nice man to share joys and sorrows with. Building a small world together in this big world.”
Old fashioned idea
“I think that many men are spastic about a relationship. They do not want to commit, for fear of losing their freedom. I think that has to do with an old-fashioned idea of what a relationship is. You really don’t have to do everything together. It’s about releasing each other and bringing out the best in each other. That’s how you can make it work. I see many couples around me where both still do what they like.
“Of course there are always things in which you are both different. But you can just talk about that to reach a consensus. For example, I don’t necessarily have a desire to have children, but if the man is nice enough, you can talk about it!”
A version of this article also appeared in
the newspaper of March 11, 2023