Vrolijk Koningsdag idereen!
Recently, I’ve been dreaming – literally – of being back in The Netherlands. The UK (while it lasts) is so fucking shitty at the moment, what with ugly Brexiteers and repulsive Scot Nats making everything confrontational and unpleasant, that I felt the need to get away from it all. Of course I realise that The Netherlands is also riven, with Geert Wilders strutting about causing trouble and the Turks adding to the strife. However, being abroad and in lovely Utrecht, will still be a tonic (with gin) and cause for rejoicing.
This visit I’ll be using the centrally located city as a jumping off spot to travel to a couple of other places. East is Arnhem. West is Rotterdam and Delft. North is Amsterdam. Far north is Groeningen or possibly Leiden. I’ll be on the trains for a while but as most places are only an hour from each other, it will be entirely enjoyable!
Both my flights and hotel have been booked, so the countdown has started.
The Mauritshuis in Den Haag have just launched a brilliantly well designed and fun website all about The Goldfinch, the tiny, world famous painting by Carel Fabritius.
If you like a) art b) Dutch art from the Golden Age c) a really clever web site, d) birds including goldfinches – I like all of those – you could do worse than spend a relaxing 10 mins at http://puttertje.mauritshuis.nl/en/
You should, if you can, head off to Den Haag and The Maurishuis to see the beautiful city and art but if you can’t and would like to see the most famous Vermeer in the world, this photo will save you money on the trip. Of all the photos of Het meisje met de parel I’ve seen on-line, this is the most realistic impression of what it’s like to stand in front of the painting. Click to zoom in!
I had a great time in The Netherlands again and managed to revisit much of Amsterdam, Den Haag and Delft. Sadly a chest infection and some bad blisters on my feet put paid to some other planned trips. My consolation was and will be two-fold, First I had to take it easy, for the latter part of my trip, in the many canal-side cafes and bars of Amsterdam. Second, I will have to revisit the country to see the places I missed out on this time.
Please click on the photo to see some shots of the fantastic places in the glorious sunshine I visited.