One morning I got an email invitation to celebrate the 12.5 working anniversary of one of my colleagues. The first thing I thought is WTH with twelve and a half!? For me, this is a very random number to celebrate. Maybe they forgot about the 12 years and still want to commemorate it? I’ve heard of 5, 10, 15, 20… or even 12 or 13 years, but 12.5 made absolutely no sense.
We got all together in the hall near to his desk. Congratulations and thank you speeches were exchanged, there were flowers, cake, plus he was given a pretty cool motorcycle outfit as a present! Then I got the feeling that this was a big deal of a celebration.
Working in a multicultural environment, I was not the only one lost with the twelve and a half year thing. They explained to us that in the Netherlands they celebrate big time the 12.5 years, as well as 25, 50 and 60 years of anniversaries. Twelve and a half years is the cooper anniversary, apparently, they cannot wait for the silver years to throw a big party so they make one halfway! The locals were also impressed to find out that this is a very Dutch thing… as we were commenting with a group of colleagues of many nationalities and well, nobody else celebrates it.
Another fun fact is that for your 60 years of marriage anniversary there is usually a congratulatory letter from the mayor or even a visit depending on the municipality! Sometimes they make an interview for an article in the local news! I agree this is quite a big thing to celebrate. ❤️