May 2, 2016
May 1, 2016
I visited the Rijksmuseum a couple of a months ago with two friends, and we arrived early because we overestimated the amount of traffic between The Hague and Amsterdam early on a Sunday morning.
Himself dropped us off and headed back home since art galleries and museums are not really his thing, my girl friends and I decided to look at the back side of the museum.
This wasn’t originally because we intended to do so, rather that despite the sunny day, it was so bitterly cold and windy that standing still was less of an option, even rugged up in warm clothes and coats.
Having reached the back entrance through the tunnel that goes through the ground floor of the building, we stop and take a look around.
The museum reaches back behind me to my left, the entrance to the tunnel running under the building covered by an ornate porch. To the right the decorative façade reaches upwards, and the more you look the more you see. Even the gates that close off the tunnel underneath the museum at night are beautifully ornate. There are stone carved pieces of various ages, some have been worn away by time, the one that contains the “Green Man” image in it’s foliage is difficult to estimate with regards to age, it could be an old one that’s been cleaned during the recent renovations, or it is a new addition because there is so much less wear than the other stone pieces.
On the other hand it’s more sheltered position has probably spared it a great deal from the elements. High up on the wall are two massive panels, made in tiles: the nearer one depicts what looks to be a crowd gathered at a roll call, the other I struggled to see well due to it’s height and angle but appears to be a King on a throne surrounded by the members of court. The detail is tantalisingly close but frustratingly too far away. It’s like a sweet (candy) placed just millimetres out of reach. I can see so much and I can see so little… Between these large tiled pieces are two smaller panels with inscriptions, these panels are framed in ornate stonework. The beautiful stonework continues down to the arched pieces at the top of the four windows on the lower floors. I’m going to invest in a far more powerful zoom lens and this wall is near the top of my list to come back to… preferably without the freezing temperatures that prevailed when these photographs were taken.
April 30, 2016
I am visiting the Rijksmuseum with two girl friends. It’s early on a Sunday morning and we arrived earlier than expected so have kill some time until the doors open.
Although the sun is shining, it is bitterly cold and the entrances to the museum are located in the shadow of the tunnel that runs directly under the musum, so in order to keep warm I need to move a little.
Going far is not an option but the end of the tunnel and the other side of the museum is only a few meters further so I head out there.
I exit on to a large Plein, at the end of which is a large ” I AMsterdam” sign (actually in real life the letters are the same shape and size, but the “I AM” is in red and the rest in white).
Before me is a lovely ornamental garden, one that I know from Google Earth images is a recent addition. Fountains and statues complete the outward vista.
I’m not certain if the smaller building is part of the Rijksmuseum complex, a private residence, an office, or something else that just happens to be located in a building of similar age and style to the Rijksmuseum. Beauty in both a large and small package is droolworthy either way…
April 29, 2016
We had arrived early on a Sunday morning at the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.
The sun may have been shining but it was bitterly cold and the wind was freezing so standing in the tunnel waiting for the museum doors to open was not a particularly comfortable experience.
I was trying to balance on my crutches to keep my feet off the cold ground when a young woman came up to us. Neither of my two friends speak Dutch, one, originally from Romania lives here and is learning, but the other, from Greece, is visitor so we were conversing in English whilst we waited.
The young woman turned out to be a visiting Australian physician, an anaesthesiologist visiting Amsterdam to attend a convention.
She approached us to confirm that she was indeed at the Entrance to the museum and then we got chatting about where we were from since I recognised her accent.
So, four women are standing talking, when all of a sudden the Aussie lady and I, who had our backs to the tunnel wall gasped and began to laugh. The other two took a second to follow our eyes, turned and then joined in the laughter.
A man, I would guess at late twenties or early thirties, dressed in what certainly looked from the front like a fluro-green mankini, covered by a tank-top, and wearing a tight beanie, sped past us on his inline skates.
He was wearing protective wrist, elbow and knee pad but nothing else.
We were all rather startled to see someone so scantily clad skating past the Rijksmuseum, especially considering how sodding freezing it was, we were all really cold and we were well dressed and had coats on.
I managed to lift my camera to snap off a few photographs before he sped off into the distance.
I enlarged one of the photographs to give you an idea… it certainly looks like the rave must have been a good one that Saturday night, things having only wound down just before nine on a Sunday morning!
My Romanian and Greek girlfriends were left with their mouths open… I was left to tell our Australian visitor that in Amsterdam you can expect anything…
April 28, 2016
Himself dropped me and two friends off early one Sunday morning at Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum.
The sun was shining but it was bitterly cold and a chill wind meant that being early was both a blessing and a curse.
We go through the arches near the centre of the building and find ourselves in a kind of porch or tunnel, that runs right through the building to the other side.
There are cycle-ways down the centre and the number of early morning cyclists during the time that we waited told me that this was a short-cut that was well used.
The walls have tile decorations both large and small, with what looks like a poem, or quotations marked out too, plus a larger piece that looks like a dedication (I think) to the founders of the Rijksmuseum.
Added to this, there are undecorated reinforcement ironworks over the cycle paths, and then decorated ones over the two pedestrian galleries that run either side of them.
These latter ironworks have a birds and maybe stylised mythical creature on them, and each set is different. My biggest problem in getting photographs however is the low light, all but a couple of the photographs I took came out too out of focus to use, my lack of tripod obviously a handicap here. On the other hand some of the tile photographs came out better than expected so sometimes it’s just swings and roundabouts. The last photograph is of a large carved stone piece, located on the entry door at the opposite end of this tunnel through the building: unlike to end we came in at, that door is protected by an external porch and this carving is within that. I would like to take more photographs of the detail of the Rijksmuseum, maybe in summer when the light is stronger, in the meantime I get to wonder on who managed to fire the zigzag shaped bricks and how they managed to fit them so beautifully into the decoration.
April 27, 2016
Several months ago, since I have not been out of the house socially for weeks, two friends arranged a trip for us to Amsterdam’s Rijksmuseum.
It’s amazing that after living some twenty years in The Netherlands, I have never visited this would famous museum, but full time work and a young family never afforded me that opportunity at first.
Later the children were bigger but the museum was closed for ten years for a top to bottom renovation, both of the building and the artworks.
I had thought that a visit was impossible once the Rijksmuseum re-opened because I knew that the building was vast and beyond my capabilities on crutches, but my friends did some research and found out that there are wheelchairs available on loan for use in the museum on a first-come-first served basis.
This sounded perfect. Himself dropped us off early on a February Sunday morning and because traffic was light we arrive early. I get some photographs of the ornate outside. The Rijksmuseum is such a huge building that getting it into one photograph is impossible, I have to do my best to get sections of it, but without a better zoom lens I can not do the stunning decoration justice.
April 26, 2016
April 25, 2016
Photograph above: (old) 45 strip adult card, photograph below: 15 strip child/senior citizen card…
(New) 45 strip adult card, note the black edging…
(old) 15 strip adult card…
Next… the card(s) you buy from the driver… if your fare falls between card values ie 5 strips, there will be no change given, you pay for three cards (six strips). Not a cheap way to travel…
The first OV Chip cards (these are one time use paper ones) there are plastic ones that can be topped up…
The two new 15 strip cards I found with the rest… I will keep them for nostalgia’s sake…
15 strip adult cards… three different editions, fare increases and different styling…
15 strip kid/ senior edition, price increase and new styling…
The oldest card in my collection… sadly used and not in mint condition…
The stamping machine, usually 3 (or four) in each tram… in stations also outside at tramhalt… everyone remembers jumping on a tram in the rush-hour and the flurry of “peep” noises that the machine gave when each card was stamped successfully one after another. You had to fold the card over in the right place to put it into the machine, that’s why so many of my strippen kaart are bent up…
Calculating the number of stops and thus how many strips to stamp off…