This is the News page of
Marinela Olaroiu and Wim van den Heuvel

About us

12-25 July 2020
It is wonderful to be ‘at home’ in Craiova and a well-known surprise: for the next weeks we will be busy with the garden in Craiova and in Varvor de Sus. Fortunately, we have time for relaxiation in between, thanks to Dragos and Andreea. They invited us for an interesting, extensive 'wine-tasting' at Domeniul Vila Dobrusa - Crama Avancis in Dragasani. We will enjoy the wines for some time!

By the time, the garden is ‘perfect’ and all is well-ordered, we will have to leave and be prepared to encounter new ‘corona-measures’ on our way to ……? (Somewhere in The Netherlands).

8-11 July 2020
We drove – in another mood we had expected, because we discovered the new owners of our house were cheating – the way we know so well to Craiova, enjoying our ‘new freedom’. No problems with corona-measures this time. And we enjoyed our 'classic stays' in Der Kaiserhof and Continental Forum.

6-7 July 2020
The moving company worked carefully, efficiently and quickly. So, we could have a last look and closed the doors. Than we went to the same castle, where we stayed when we bought our house 21 years ago. We celebrated living happily for 21 years in our beautiful villa in Spaubeek.

Week 26 and 27 2020
These are busy times. Preparing to move, but we do not now yet to where. I.e. organizing weekend markets in our front-yard to sell things we (probably will not need in our apartment), selling paintings, storing winter clothes in case we do not have a place to live in the Netherlands in December, etc. Also preparing to visit our house in Romania, medical check-ups, a temporary address in the Netherlands, informing a lot of institutions, organisations about the changes, etc. And we planned as much appointments and controls as we could for the rest of the year. It will stay a busy time this year.

13-21 June 2020
We have started preparing for our move to ....? The first step is to pack the books, to sell the paintings that are too big, and having a market in front of the house each weekend for stuff we don't want to take with us. We are doing well so far.

7-8 June 2020
We went visiting friends in Schildwolde and were invited to attend a special museum (needed reservation of course in ‘corona time’). It is worthwhile to visit Museum Møhlmann in Appingedam (, designed and owned by the painter Rob Møhlmann. Admire the exhibition ‘In het spoor van Jan Mankes’.

22-29 May 2020
A very busy week. First, we sold our wonderful house in Spaubeek. So, we have to think about moving: where and when. Probably, it will be in Maastricht, but …. Now we have to find an apartment, which meets our wishes. We starting visiting ‘apartment for sale’, ‘apartment for sale’, ‘apartment for …..etc.

14-15 May 2020
We planned to go back from our place in Craiova to Spaubeek. Should we take the risk? We did: travelling through ‘corona-Europe’: Romania-Hungary-Austria-Germany-home. It has been an exciting experience: could you pass the border? Well we managed, but has to be very patient. Will you be put in quarantine ? Fortunately not. Is there a place to sleep ? Difficult, but we found an empty hotel (no owner, no personnel, no guests) and slept very well.

7 May 2020
For some time Wim worked on a article about ‘lessons to be learned from the covid-19 pandemic’. It has been published now in two journals and might be updated after a while.

22-29 April 2020
Winter is now definitely over in Craiova. We take care for the grapes, strawberries, currants, peach, apple, pear. Time to create a new vegetable garden. Certainly useful in corona times, but before that the jeu-de-boule court must be removed. Three days! And then the vegetable garden starts to take shape ... and then the plants come: tomato, cucumber, zucchini, pumpkin, beans. At the end of June we expect to start harvesting ..........

18 April 2020
A week after Roman-Catholic Eastern, it is Orthodox Eastern. Still a lot of restrictions because of covid-19. Hopefully, we get used to the space we have to give to eachother, always. It is a lesson not to be forgotten. Happy Eastern ! Paste Fericit !

1 April 2020
After the spring the snow comes! Indeed strange times. The peach and plum trees are full in bloom. The daffodils bow to the snow. It produces beautiful pictures (see also personal)..

1 April 2020
Paliatia vol 13, no 2 has been publshed. See

30 March 2020
Although it is probably forbidden, we had to go outside the town to check our cottage in Varvor and do some reparations and preparations for the spring. So we protected ourselves and moved on. We managed and fortunately no checkpoints.

23 March 2020
For over a week we lived in springtime. But this morning we discovered it is winter (see also personal). We are adviced to stay inside as much as possible, not because of the winter, but due to the corona-virus. We expect it will take some days...........some more days..........

15-16 March 2020
We drove to Bucharest for other planned meetings. But - not unexpected - most of these were cancelled. So we had time to meet Dragos and Andrea and to spend time with family.

13-14 March 2020
Being earlier in Craiova than planned, the first job is to cut the grapes and clean the garden: pleasant work with plenty of sun and not to many people around (as adviced by the health authorities).

8-11 March 2020
We have appointments for conferences and meetings in Slovakia and Romania, so we started to travel through what was becoming 'corona Europa'. On our way we were informed that the conferences were cancelled. The planned visit to the museum Danubiana was short (see also personal). Arriving at 10 o'clock, we were told that the museum was closed starting this morning by ministrial order because of ... the corona virus. We continued our travel through Hungaria and were lucky enough to pass the Hungarian-Romanian border at Nadlac three hours before the virus-check at the border and closure of the border started. We arrived safely in Craiova, where the spring welcomed us.

1 March 2020
The first issue of 2020 (volume 3) of Romanian Journal of Family Medicine, of which Marinela is 'editor sef', is published: see

26 February 2020
Wim participates in various advisory committees, which focus on long-term care. Today, there were various meetings dicussing how to improve this care. As in all health care, persons, who need care, are considered the main object, the most important. We all seem to agree on that. Regulations and measures are designed to serve the person in need, at least that is what we want and say. However, we have to ask ourselves not only 'how to realise it', but also 'do we realise it'. The answers may be surprising.

15-16 February 2020
Stormy weather! A perfect time to visit Dacia Felix in Tongeren, Belgium. Wonderful !! (see also personal) We stayed overnight in Liege to celebrate our being together.

13 February 2020
A policlinic visit to some hospitals - like in our neighboorhoud Zuyderland - may turn into a 'dehumanising' experience, as we experienced. For a 5-minutes check, you are asked to come 20 minutes in advance. After arrival on the requested time (08.40) and registration, we wait, just wait and wait. After 80 minutes, you dare to ask what is going on. It seems you have been 'forgotten'. Nobody is responsible. You are a patient (although not sick) and have to behave as a 'patient'. We have had such experiences before; yes, in the same hospital! Just imagine, you need acute care.

6-8 February 2020
It took some time, but we did the most work to 'rearrange' the souterrain of our house. Now it is ready for art exhibitions.

4 February 2020
Today the first 'working' meeting of the programme committee 'Better at home' was held. The various research proposals to analyse the key problems in taking care for people with chronic health problems at home brought in-depth discussion on the way the committee has to work.

20 January 2020
Today, various craftsmen start to paint the walls in our souterrain and to replace some doors. The work is expected to take about 3 days, but unfortunately they stopped after the first day, due to weather condition. After some consultations, we decided to finish the job ourselves.

14-15 January 2020
A new committee 'Better at home' is installed by the director of the Health Research and Development Council on the 14th in The Hague. Wim is a member of that committee. The next day the programme committee on long-term care and support held its meeting in Utrecht.

10 January 2020
The new volume of Paliatia has been published ( !

8 January 2020
The programme to stimulate scientific research in nursing sciences and to build a research infrastructure ends today officially. The committee did a good job, accordingly to the 'self-evaluation', thanks to the excellent work of the Health Research and Development Council (ZonMw) staff. For Wim it was a honour to chair this committee for 11 years.

Merry Christmas and a Happy, Prosperous 2020.















9 December 2019
The next issue of the Romanian Journal of Family Medicine - of which Marinela is editor-in-chief - has been published, see

6 December 2019
Time to start rehabilitation. Is there a better way than to start with ‘Sinterklaas’ himself? (see also Personal).

2 December 2019
We enjoyed the visit and stay of Dragos with some friends. It was not only a cosy weekend, it also helpful for the ‘healing proces’.

27-29 November 2019
A ‘forced stay’ of Wim, chaperoned by Marinela, in a hotel-hospital (Rotterdam/Schiedam Franciscus Vlietland) is a learning experience. The progress in surgery technology, the efficiency of the treatment process together with the ‘human touch’ made it an inspiring source for writing and research (see also Personal).

26 November 2019
A meeting at ZonMw in The Hague opened the opportunity to look for the ‘lessons learned’ in stimulating nursing research. Some lessons could be useful for the next programme on ‘nursing and caring’?

5-21 November 2019
A busy time – a consequence of being abroad for some time – with a lot of meetings, editing journal articles, check-ups, shopping and maintenance.

1 November 2019
The Dutch Health Research and Development Council Conference (ZonMw) organized a final conference of the research programme ‘From Knowledge to Action’, chaired by Wim.

23-26 October 2019
We attended the 'National Conference of Family Medicine' in Bucharest. Marinela presented an overview about how General Practitioners work in the Netherlands.

21 October 2019
After the conference in Poiana Brasov we needed a break. We choose Sinaia and enjoyed our stay at ‘La Tunuri’. This hotel is situated in a monumental park with a view on the Peles Castle: an old dream (of 20 years ago) came true!

17-19 October 2019
Another invitation came some time ago to participate in the National Conference on Palliative Care in Romania, to be held in Poiana Brasov. The title of the conference 'MISIUNE, VIZIUNE, VALORIS. Marinela and Wim were asked to prepare a workshop on the impact of (top) research on (clinical) palliative care practice. A challenge we accepted with pleasure.

10-12 October 2019
The annual conference on family medicine is a real event each year, with when - you are lucky - a beautifull boattrip on the Danube. We were lucky. Marinela presented one lecture on 'Palliative care in familiy medicine' and Wim one lecture in English (translated by Marinela for participants who doubted about their English) on 'From frailty to resilience'.

3 October 2019
Today is time for tuica. Wonderful weather, we start at 9.00 in the morning. We plan to distillate 3 ‘kazans’, but the gas supply is inefficient today (actually for the last months): we reach 8 liters at 19.00. The good news: the quality is +++++. And the help of Mihai was really needed. (See also Personal)

29 September 2019
We organized a diner in a Lebanese restaurant in Craiova with friends and family. The quality was good, the taste provoking, the service was poor. We enjoyed the wonderful evening with Nela, Tatiana, Lucy and Gaby ……….… We almost forgot Teo? Of course not!

25 September 2019
A day for relaxation with Dragos, who came to visit a football match in Craiova and to support us to solve some technical ICT related problems. Now we feel ‘protected’ again.

23 September 2019
RAIN! Not much, but after 2 months it seems like a miracle. We had never thought – after living so long in the Netherlands – that we were excited about rain!

14-19 September 2019
Still no rain, but we cannot wait longer: we had to pick all the grapes. The quality of the ‘most’ is good; the quantity of wines is small: all together (various red and white wines) we will have about 150 liters. The remains are preparing to become a good tuica.

3-11 September 2019
For some medical consultations and planned meetings, we had to travel (by air) to the Netherlands. Unfortunately, it was also the time of strikes at KLM, which resulted in some annoying delays. Also, one of the planned meetings was cancelled. All together, we had full agenda and were happy we had some time to visit friends in Schildwolde and Spaubeek.

1-2 September 2019
We started to pick the first grapes. These are some nobles ones. The heat threatens to dry them out. We expect about 15 liters of nice wine. The other grapes have to wait a few weeks (hoping for rain).

6-17 August 2019
The rain has stopped a week ago and now the heat (canicula) is ruling our life. We spend days in Varvor – in the forest – to clean it, to make some walking space and to build a few terraces.

29 July 2019
Time for a second medical consultation. The advice is again a treatment with electrotherapy

25-27 July 2019
In a few weeks our garden in Varvor has turned into a jungle. We need help to find our way. Fortunately we have Mihai!

12-22 July 2019
Our friends from Spaubeek - Margot and Fons - have honored us with a visit. We enjoyed being together and exploring Oltenia a bit, urban and rural parts. At the end we made a small tour and visited Sibiu, Shigisoara, Brasov, Sinaia and Bucharest (see also personal).

29 June 2019
Today a special day: Teo's hair needs to be cut. The honor is up to Nasu. After the ceremony, which included cutting the first piece of hair and a prediction about the future profession of Teo, there was a festive barbecue with friends. A beautiful tradition!

24 June 2019
Traveling and working in the garden have a price: back pain. A medical consultation is required, including an X-ray. The advice is - as a first step - a treatment fan for two weeks: physical therapy. Fortunately there is another distraction in between: a farewell concert for Alexandru Racu by the corala academica a filarmonicii “OLTENIA” Craoiva led by Florian-George Zamfir and 3 violin concerts (Bach, Beethoven and Brahms) by the symphony orchestra "OLTENIA"
with Gian Luigi Zampieri as conductor and Florin Croitoru as soloist

21-23 June 2019
When we are back in Craiova after 6 weeks, the garden looks very different. High temperature and lots of rain have been successful: wheelbarrows full of weeds (see also personal).

18-20 June 2019
After some busy weeks in the Netherlands we are on our way to Craiova again. We have partly taken a different route: we visit and spend the night in Leoben (Austria) and Belgrade (Serbia).

25 May 2019
After 10 days being back in the Netherlands, the garden is ‘presentable’ and we are ready for a barbecue, just in time.

21 May 2019
After 4 years we meet again with Wim’s sisters (in law) and brothers (in law). This time the place to be is Nuenen, where we also met 10 years ago. A warm and pleasant meeting which showed evidently, that we are getting old.
Afterwards, we met Vincent in the park.

14 May 2019
Wim had an inspiring meeting with the committee on ‘Long-term care and support’  in Groningen, followed by an interview with former colleagues of the department of sociology to document ‘narrative history’. Walking through the city of Groningen we meet people, which we did not see for 20 years; a special experience.

10-13 May 2019
Today we leave, going back to the Netherlands. How will our garden look after 6 weeks? For our way back, we choose a road we have explored for the last time 15 years ago. First stop at the baroque city of Oradea. The next day along the Tartar mountains to classic Cracow. Our last stop is in amazing Dresden.

7 May 2019
Pomana today, to remember the death of Marinela’s mother 7 years ago. We start at the graveyard and afterwards we bring her favorite dishes and drinks to family and friends.