Both of the Van Wijk brothers work for Dentilia, the dental laboratory on Hoogstraat founded by their father. Arthur van Wijk is the current owner of the company, and its flourishing played a key role in their lives. They grew up in the neighbourhood during the 1950s and 60s, with the family living on Groenendaal, just behind the business.
The area around Groenendaal was where the brothers, true rascals, often played. One last undeveloped site remained, and when it flooded they could race through the water on their scooters. In front of the Savoy Hotel were gaping holes, even bomb craters, filled with water. Using scrap wood the brothers covered over the holes, though sometimes they still managed to fall into the water. That’s when ‘you got a soaker’: wet feet. But the holes were never that deep, imagines Gerard van Wijk, though at the time the muddy water seemed frighteningly deep.
That’s when ‘you got a soaker’: wet feet.
Grit your teeth
To this day the brothers work at Dentilia, the oldest business on Hoogstraat between Mariniersweg and Oostplein. The premises is currently undergoing renovation. Dentilia can best be described by the text printed on the T-shirts of a local football club that the business once sponsored: “Dentilia: grit your teeth”.
To this day the brothers work at Dentilia, the oldest business on Hoogstraat between Mariniersweg and Oostplein.