Happiness delayed - Leeuwarden City of Literature

Between May 7 and August 14, 2022, every day during the 100-day Arcadia cultural program, Happiness delayed by Leeuwarden UNESCO City of Literature brought a new story to a different, paradisiacal spot in Fryslân.

100 stories by 100 writers told in 100 gardens over 100 consecutive days

We’ve asked 100 authors from Fryslân, The Netherlands and Belgium, and all over the world to write about their idea of paradise, of beauty, of happiness. Until August 14th, every day a new short story will be told, each day in a different garden or other idyllic setting throughout the province of Fryslân.

After the live readings of the stories by skilled (voice) actors, they are published on our website, where you can read each story in Dutch, Frisian and English, and in some cases in the original language of the story (among others Spanish, German, Korean, Hebrew). On this website, you can listen to recordings of the stories too; most of them in Dutch or Frisian, but the stories that were written in English have also been recorded in English, for example Cat Hellisen (CoL Edinburgh, UK), Emma Neale (CoL Dunedin, NZ), and Jessica Bothma (CoL Durban, ZA). 

We are very happy with and proud of this unique collection of stories and translations about beauty, happiness and what paradise might, should, could be, or not. We want to say a special thanks to the Cities of Literature who contributed a story for Happiness Delayed: besides Edinburgh, Dunedin and Durban also Barcelona (SP), Heidelberg (DE), Nanjing (CN), Suleimaniya (IQ), Ulyanovsk (RU), Utrecht (NL) and Wonju (KR).


100 locations

100 stories



Sunday 14 August 2022 • 15:30 hours
Voorstraat 35, 8801 LA Franeker, Nederland
Read by Ate de Jong in Dutch

And then?
by Thomas Verbogt

Saturday 13 August 2022 • 15:30 hours
Oldehoofsterkerkhof, Leeuwarden, Nederland
Read by Tet Rozendal in Frisian

Tree Child - a fairy tale (6+)
by Paul van Dijk

Friday 12 August 2022 • 19:30 hours
Boegen 1, Oudemirdum, Nederland
Read by Claudia Woolgar in English

Landmark Beach
by Chika Unigwe

Thursday 11 August 2022 • 19:30 hours
Dokter Ypeylaan 10, 9257 MR Noardburgum, Nederland
Read by Marjolein Ley in Dutch

Time and the Story
by Julie Phillips

Wednesday 10 August 2022 • 19:30 hours
Jan Hofswijk 1, Wijnjewoude, Nederland
Read by Marjolein Ley in Dutch

Mirror (12+)
by Caja Cazemier