Tuesday, April 20, 2021
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Pia de Jong

Pia de Jong is a Dutch writer who lives in Princeton. Her memoir, “Saving Charlotte,” was published by W.W. Norton in 2017. She can be contacted at pdejong@ias.edu.

The Son Also Rises

When my children were much younger, I sometimes burst into tears realizing that one day they would not be permanently around me anymore. Now I realize children need to leave the nest when they are ready.

My Brilliant Friend

He was sitting on a metal heating grid on the lawn next to the Graduate College. A squirrel. A fat squirrel, I must say. A squirrel on steroids, with a huge pot belly.

These Vagabond Shoes

Covid stopped us for almost a year from crossing the Hudson, but now it was time for a dose of Gotham.

Where Have All the Foxes Gone?

In April I saw my first fox trotting in front of Nassau Hall. In June I saw a coyote, playing close to a deer family. But at last, the student have returned, and the animals hide themselves again.

Lightness of Being

My news diet changed during the Trump administration. And then I found poetry.

Storm Damage

The mob storming the Capitol plays through my mind, over and over again, like a bad ‘Game of Thrones’ episode. They have been blind-sided by a man who once looked into a pond and fell in love with himself.

A Life to Dance For

‘I have only one lesson,’ Roger Berlind told a group of Prince­ton students. ‘Follow your intuition. Do what your heart says.’

The Nativity Scene on Nightingale Street

This Christmas, in a year that took so many magical rituals from us, I think back to my “Grandpa and Grandma Amsterdam,” as we called them, living in their upstairs apartment on the Nachtegaalstraat — or Nightingale Street.

War of the Words

The biggest surprise of this presidential election is that there is no surprise. The country turned out to be exactly as split as it was four years ago.

A Change of Habits

I am no longer the same as I was before the pandemic. I can’t just pick up my old life, pretend there’s not a half-year gap. Social contact, I read, is one of the most complicated things for our brain.