Sophia turns 30 today

Today Sophia turns 30 years old.
It is the ninth birthday without gifts, without music, without a party, without happiness.
Without Sophia.
Shortly before her 22nd birthday she disappeared, under mysterious circumstances, on October 28th 2015, in Uganda.

The pain of missing her is boundless and only gets bigger, more intense and heavier, as time passes.
As far as such pain can be expressed in words, better ones than these I have not yet found:

The world is strangely empty without you
There is so little left in it
The sky is always so annoyingly blue
Why? What’s the point?
The blackbird is softly singing in a tree
For me he doesn’t have to bother
The world could be full of happiness, but now:
Empty, without you

Annie M.G. Schmidt (1911 – 1995)

We will continue doing what we can to find Sophia.
Hope does spring eternal and too much has still not been done.

Marije Slijkerman
Gerard, Max en Jan Koetsier

Amsterdam, December 7th, 2023