Georgian National Day: Diversity and Vibrancy at Castle de Wittenburg

Regal in white Georgian national dress H.E. Mr Konstantine Surguladze, bearing a traditional sword, together with his spouse Mrs Nino Rusadze, a vision from another era in a cream and white high-necked open-sleeved creation with touches of gold, charmingly greeted the large amount of Ambassadors, Diplomats, Georgian nationals and friends of Georgia.
Many Embassy staff and Georgians delighted us in their dress showcasing the richness of fabrics and embroidery in deep colours. Even Castle Director Ralf Meppelder joined in and cut a dashing figure.
Further examples of national dress and footwear, combining traditional and modern could be admired as guests made their way down to enjoy their drinks in the warmth and splendour of the gardens.
Gathering in the ballroom for National Anthems, we discovered the diversity, vibrancy, modernity and drive of Georgia, a country at the crossroads of Asia and Europe, by means of a short film.
His Excellency stood proud on this Day of Independence, proud of his country and its people and all they have achieved in the last 25 years. “Our transformation and our path” he said” which has led us to the ultimate goal: joining the EU family where we belong with our minds and our stance”.
The Ambassador then proceeded to introduce the State Minister of Georgia on European and Euro-Atlantic Integration. State Minister Mr David Bakradze commended the Netherlands as being one of the biggest EU investors in Georgia. “We are”, he said, “past the period of transition. Georgia is not Reformed but Transformed”and is rich in business opportunities.” He went on to link the common vision and pragmatism of both countries.
We were then treated to two outstanding Georgian musicians: Nino Gvetadze on the piano and Levan Tskhadadze on the clarinet. This was a top level performance and the beautiful, tone-perfect and highly professional harmony they created was charmingly reinforced by the knowledge they are in effect husband and wife.
Still under the spell of their masterful performance we made our way to the sumptuous buffet
where huge platters were loaded with a wide array of delicacies: involving aubergines, beetroot, spinach, mint, quantities of salmon, and meat dishes, not to mention the desserts and cakes with red and white flags.
I did not know how splendid Georgian cuisine was and they were of course complemented by beautiful Georgian wines…
This was one of those perfect evenings combining the charm and depth of History and tradition with a modern drive and vibrancy. Georgia, firmly in touch with the Dutch.

Photo’s: Anton van der Riet & George Beridze

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