Friday, June 12, 2009

Day 11; Amsterdam

After a great night's sleep (I usually get one after traveling earlier that morning) we headed to the Anne Frank House ( If anyone ever goes to this museum please, I kid you not, get your tickets online before you get there! We walked up (Doug and I) to the "Internet online purchases" ticket window as the second and third person in line. Not pre-purchasers were in a line close to 150 people long.

Now, this line could have been attributed to Anne's 80th birthday today (which was so great to see) but also could been due to poor planning. Plan ahead!!!

The museum was absolutly great and so professionally done. "No photos" as I was told and definitely felt like that was understandable and kept the camera in the pocket. We did, however, get to actually walk through and see the entire attic/annex that anne and the other 7 (including some family) that were hidden in that small space. It was a very tasteful and well done museum.

Not only did the house provide chilling details and actual exerts from the diary but also allowed the witness (me) walk through the doorway covered with the fake bookcase, and stand inside Anne's small room that she shared; with original "wallpaper" in the form of pictures and book cut-outs pasted to the wall. It displayed photos taken from that room out the window of other jewish families taken from their homes and onto concentration camps.

Yes, WWII stories and concentration camps can stir some emotions but actually being in that old 10' 8" room stirs some emotions that are deep and only felt by touching the walls and seein the diary its red and yellow rustic hardback display.

After visiting the treasured Anne Frank House Museum and walking and grabbing something to eat, crepes, we headed towards the Van Gogh Museum ( The Van Gogh Museum was everything I hoped it would be...200 Van Gogh paintings and not much else.

I went to that museum hoping to learn a lot about Van Gogh and was hoping it wasn't just a lure to get tourists there to see 4-5 Van Gogh's and 100's of other artists...It was great. So may Van Gogh's with some great back story on his emerging talent and transformation into modernistic art. Van Gogh is vastly catching my top artists...his color schemes and brushstrokes up close are captivating.

After the Van Gogh Museum we saw the famous " I AM STERDAM" sign ( and took some photos but pretty much just went shopping for tshirts and socks to get me through another backpacked week of Europe.

Tomorrow - Berlin. I have NO idea what to expect but I've heard it's great but Amsterdam is one hard city to follow.

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