The answer to my question, "What was the collective Dutch hope for the new year?" was answered in today's Amsterdam Metro [9/1/06]. "Nederlanders wil korte, dikke kroket." The Dutch want short, fat croquettes. Croquettes (or kroketten), for those of you not aware of this delicacy for which the Dutch have a particular fondness, is a block or cylinder of liquified foodstuffs fried in breadcrumbs.
This is the results of the Big Croquette Survey recently undertaken, presumably by the krokettenministerie. The important findings also included other items of national importance, such as most croquettes are eaten at home at lunch time in a sandwich. If also discovered that only 1% of all the people asked knew that the average crockette contains horse-meat. This was also a surprise to me. I didn't realise the gunk in a croquette was actually meat.