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Amsterdam and Poland 2017 

 Day 4, Amsterdam

Wednesday, June 7

 

 When we woke up this morning, it was cold, cloudy and rainy so we stayed in bed an extra half hour as we didn't have any place to go until around noon. After another good breakfast, relaxed in the room for a little while.

Today we had planned to attend the noonday concert at the Concertgebouw. which is the large music hall in Amsterdam It was too far to walk, and it was raining so we took a taxi.  Every Wednesday the Concertgebouw offers a free half hour concert. We got there just in time, as a few minutes after we arrived they ran out of tickets. The concert to get is held in their Rehearsal Hall which was limited to 400 people. They had to turn away many, many people, so we are very glad that we got there in time to get tickets.

We sat on the third row to hear Beethoven's Tweede symfonie in D played the Intercontinental Ensemble consisting of 9 young musicians.  It was beautifully played, and we enjoyed it very much. We could have taken the tour of the music hall but we had planned to visit the art museum afterwards

 Construction on the Concertgebouw began in 1883 in a pasture that was then outside the city. A total of 2,186 piles of length 40 to 43 feet were sunk into the soil to support the building.

The hall opened on April 11, 1888 with an inaugural concert, in  which an orchestra of 120 musicians and a chorus of 500 singers participated, The Main Hall seats 1,974 people.

When we came out to the concert it was pouring. We had worn our raincoats and hoods and carried a small umbrella which didn't do much good because the wind was blowing so strongly, it was really cold out.  

  We walked in the rain for several blocks to the Rijksmuseum which a large art museum comparable to the National Gallery in DC. It is reported to have 8000 artistic and historical objects that tell the story of 800 years of Dutch history from 1200 to the present.  

Before visiting the galleries, we stopped in their restaurant for lunch which was tasty. The cafe overlook the atrium inside the muesum.

 Kathleen had bought our tickets online and an audio tour.  We were there for over two hours and enjoyed many of the old Masters including Vermeer's "Girl with the Milk Pitcher"

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rembrandt"s" Nightwatch".

 

Other favorites were:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Gallery was very full of art lovers. When we left the sun was shining but it was still very cold, and we were some distance from our hotel so we took a cab.  

 

After Kathleen had her usual afternoon nap, we walked several blocks to another restaurant, Haesje Claes, where Kathleen had made reservations several months ago.  It was a Dutch restaurant, with a lot of atmosphere and huge crowds. There were four dining rooms and a second floor where a bus tour group was seated.  After we were seated from a while at a four top with a bench seat against the wall, the maître d’ said he wanted to move us across the aisle to a booth when it became vacant. It seems that they wanted to move all of the tables together on the side we were on for a large group which soon arrived after we moved to the booth. 

Kathleen had a tomato soup, and I had a Dutch shrimp cocktail which was a surprise as the shrimp looked like a bowl of small worms but they were good. For the entrée Kathleen had salmon and I had calves’ liver and onion with bacon and fried apples – it was delicious.

We have certainly enjoyed our stay in Amsterdam. It is a fun city with a lot to see. We will have to come back another time to see all of the things that we missed.  We are thankful that we were not run over by a bicycle.

  Next Day

Day 1 - Amsterdam

Day 2 - Amsterdam

Day 3 - Amsterdam

Day 4 - Amsterdam

Day 5 - Warsaw

Day 6 - Warsaw

Day 7- Warsaw

Day 8 - Czestochowa and Kracow

Day 9 - Krakow

Day 10 - Auschwitz and Wroclaw

Day 11 - Wroclaw

Day 12 coming soon