Sunday, 13 April 2014

Some more goings on

I have been in Amsterdam for just over a week and we have done so many things already! I had a list of things to do in Amsterdam and have just about ticked off every one of them.

My wish list of things to see inluded a visit to Keukenhof, the Rijksmuseum to see Rembrandt's Nightwatch.
The Rijksmuseum was amazing, in that it has been thoroughly renovated over several years and has only just been re-opened recently. The people's entrance hall is magnificent and the structures that were built are an engineering feat...amazing stuff. See here for More about the renovations .

The amazing 4 story historic Art Library recently restored and open to the public.
Here are just a few photos of the hundreds I took, of our visit there.

1770's Delft Blue Ceremaic vases. The tall ones are to display single tulip stems in the little spouts on the sides

The new foyer and entrance court showing coffee/restaurant  with store beneath (downstairs)

The all important coffee time at the Rijks

The visitors crowding around to see the Nightwatch by Rembrandt

me with the Nightwatch. It's a huge artwork.
Mieke with Vermeer's streetscape that Dad loved so much

We have been to both in the first week. As well as that we have been to Edam,  a gorgeous little town not far from Mieke's house, where they make the famous Edam cheeses.

MS 'Ria' - on Het Ij
Me with my new friend Ria
On Friday we visited the parents of a friend , who live on a houseboat on Het Ij,- in Amsterdam. They have lived on this boat for many decades and have never lived in a house. It is very roomy and comfortable and recently motored down to France in it for a holiday. How good is that, to be in your permanent home on holidays! No packing, or organising someone to look after your place. They stock up with all their regular groceries and even oil for the engine before they set off for their journey. They are a very lovely, hospitable and kind couple, and we enjoyed our visit with them very much

Mieke with Ria and their keeshond

At Mieke's garden house
This past week we've also spent several days at Mieke's garden house, weeding the very large garden and planting some seedlings. There is just so much work to be done after the winter months, as well as that she was away in Australia for 6 weeks, so she is somewhat behind in the jobs that should be done in early spring. These garden complexes were opened up to the community after WWll for people who lived
 in flats and had no probability to acquire a garden of their own.(Some history about these gardens.) Each garden contains a very small house - about 6 x 6 metres each, which you can renovate however you like but you have to stay within the parameters of the rules laid down by the council governing these garden complexes. There are a number of these on the outskirts of Amsterdam and highly sought after when they are available for sale.

In the garden

In the garden

Anyway, with all the sightseeing, gardening, walking everywhere we go, I feel rather tired each night so I sleep very well.
The house I am staying in is a one bedroom unit but the rooms are roomy, so I sleep in the lounge or dining area and then each day the bed is folded up and put away...but it is a comfy bed and the rooms are centrally heated so it's very comfortable and plenty warm enough.

OK...It's taken me quite a long time to load these photos from my phone to my memory stick and then back into my it's goodbye folks for now.
Missing all my lovely family and friends in Oz but enjoying my time here immensely.


  1. I enjoyed that letter thank you. you have done so much in one week. I love mieke's garden house. I wondered how that worked. you sound happy. missing you. xx

  2. funny. the history of the gardens seems to be in dutch. xxx lol

    1. Charein, there should be a 'translate' button somewhere on your page and you can then read it in English. :-)

  3. Tricia, you fit right in! You look wonderful amongst the people and the scenery. Such a treat to know you're having such a great time. The painting sure is huge, good you took a photo of you next to it. Love the pic of you and Miek @ coffee. I esp like the photo of you with Ria, the scarf suits you, don't often see you in winter clothes.

    1. Thanks Hil, these are just 'spring' clothes and even they take plenty of time to put on and take off. It's quite a drama to decide how warm or freezing the day will be. Not used to it, but you would do well. x

  4. Hi busy you have been! Love the idea of a floating holiday & Mieke's garden & house is magical. Being in the home of Rembrants ..what a treat!...reminds me of the Hermitage...& this re-enactment of the Night Watchman.

  5. Hi Tricia - you certainly are having a great time. Lovely for you to be back in Holland after so many years!

  6. he he. Het heeft een poosje geduurd.


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