A Travellerspoint blog

This blog is published chronologically. Go straight to the most recent post.

Tulips and Rainbows Clad in Orange -27 April

Keukenhof on King's Day

rain
View 2015 Costa Rica (plus 1996 and 2008) & 2016 Tulip Cruise on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

Today (April 27th) I found our bill under the door had a charge for alcohol on it. I was also agitated because Bob was not getting ready to have breakfast at 7 and I couldn't find my sweater (which turned out to be on the bottom of the closet). We were going to see the tulips today and I wanted to be on time. The alcohol charge turned out to be a mis-typed room number.
View of the bow camera

View of the bow camera


Today is Kings Day and everyone wears orange. I didn't think I had anything orange until I realized that the lining of my coat was orange. So I put on my sweaters, and over that I put on my raincoat, and then I turned my coat inside out and wore it that way. When Bob got our color for our bus (yellow), he thought he saw the bus outside but it turned out to be a Viking cruise ship bus. Raul the cruise manager said for me to get on the first bus, and the first bus we found was orange. So we got on. This turned out to be the bus of the big group of a travel agent from California. But we just stayed there.
Large Dutch house

Large Dutch house


IMG_5561.JPGFields of Flowers in the rain

Fields of Flowers in the rain


Rain and rainbow on the way to the gardens

Rain and rainbow on the way to the gardens


The guide was pretty good (I think the travel agent for this group poaches all the good guides) and we lucked out in that it rained fairly hard, but we were on the bus then (both going and coming) and was mostly sunny while we were in the gardens.
IMG_5564.JPGTicket

Ticket


Bob's photo of me with my orange coat (inside out)

Bob's photo of me with my orange coat (inside out)


The guide took us through the gardens (although one place had stepping stones
Stepping Stones among the Tulips

Stepping Stones among the Tulips


and she wanted me to go on the grass which I didn't want to do with the ground as wet as it was - so I just went around on the road to the other side.
Flagstone pathway

Flagstone pathway


Winding paths

Winding paths


Dolphin fountain

Dolphin fountain


Paths in the garden

Paths in the garden


After we left the guide, I went and ordered tulips for everyone who could grow them. I was disappointed in the bulbs when they came - some of them were rotted.
White tulips

White tulips


Pink and white multiple petaled tulips

Pink and white multiple petaled tulips


World Peace tulips

World Peace tulips


Large cupped daffodil

Large cupped daffodil


Tulip double early

Tulip double early


Single Early Tulips

Single Early Tulips


Red. pink and white tulips

Red. pink and white tulips


Pink tulips

Pink tulips

Mixed border

Mixed border

Tulips

Tulips


Reflections

Reflections


Statue

Statue


Fountains

Fountains


Grape hyacinths

Grape hyacinths


Yellow flowers among the trees

Yellow flowers among the trees

Red Darwin tulip

Red Darwin tulip

Pagoda at the end of a path

Pagoda at the end of a path


Fritillaria Imp - Rubra

Fritillaria Imp - Rubra


Narcissus and tulips

Narcissus and tulips

Stop and play a game of chess

Stop and play a game of chess


Bands of flowers

Bands of flowers


Grape hyacinths

Grape hyacinths


Historic garden map

Historic garden map

Flowers against the wall

Flowers against the wall


Fountain

Fountain


Botanical tulips

Botanical tulips


It did rain one more time a little bit while we were in the gardens and we just went into one of the pavilions. (Bob used the bathroom)
Orange hair for King's Day

Orange hair for King's Day

vases of flowers

vases of flowers

7623164-Exhibit_in_the_pavilion_Keukenhof.jpgAmaryllis

Amaryllis

Amaryllis

Amaryllis

large_IMG_5602.JPGIMG_5600.JPG
Windmill in the exhibit hall

Windmill in the exhibit hall

Flower cart in the exhibit hall

Flower cart in the exhibit hall

IMG_3551.jpg
After we left that pavilion, I tried very hard to find the other pavilions to see what they had in them, but I just couldn't figure out which way to go
Drawbridge

Drawbridge


Flowering tree

Flowering tree


Floral picture (should be seen from the bleachers, but I couldn't get up there)

Floral picture (should be seen from the bleachers, but I couldn't get up there)


Pink and white

Pink and white


So we went back to the bus early because Bob was cold. We passed some kiosks and a calliope wagon on the way.
IMG_5620.JPGCalliope

Calliope


Calliope wagon

Calliope wagon


Strawberry cart

Strawberry cart

Cheese bearing Cow

Cheese bearing Cow

Cheese for sale

Cheese for sale


Wooden tulips (they never fade)

Wooden tulips (they never fade)


IMG_5625.jpg
Most of our group came back to the bus early and did not wait for the guide at the designated location
Going back to the bus parking lot

Going back to the bus parking lot


I took photos on the way back. Some of them I have no idea what their significance was.
Yellow lady statue

Yellow lady statue


Green flags

Green flags

Flower cars

Flower cars

Purple nose

Purple nose

Silka factory

Silka factory

Green light

Green light

Tunnel back to Amsterdam

Tunnel back to Amsterdam

Dolly Parton Bridge (actually the Enneüs Heerma Bridge)

Dolly Parton Bridge (actually the Enneüs Heerma Bridge)

Following another bus back to town

Following another bus back to town


People celebrating Kings Day from the bus

People celebrating Kings Day from the bus


We got back after lunch started and went right on down and ate. I had a John Dory sandwich, 8E7DB58ED1D7E653EE7BDCA456FDFF6A.jpg
Chicken curry soup

Chicken curry soup


and duck.
8E76B86FCD58EFA2E16E935321226E75.jpg
We went this afternoon for tea
Tea cookies

Tea cookies

tea sandwiches

tea sandwiches


Lobby of the ship decorated for Kings Day

Lobby of the ship decorated for Kings Day


and afterward talked to a guy named Richard who was on the Intrepid before Bob was on there.
8E2A9FD1EF90DA38D99D3E2E08FFE163.jpg
Bob has packed - I have to pack sometime tonight.
Kissing Swans

Kissing Swans


We disembark tomorrow and go to Alkmaar

Posted by greatgrandmaR 21:13 Archived in Netherlands Comments (0)

Not Lugging Luggage - April 28

Disembarking


View 2015 Costa Rica (plus 1996 and 2008) & 2016 Tulip Cruise on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

Disembarkation

All the people who were last to get off (9:00) had brown luggage tags. We had brown luggage tags as we were not flying out today. The AmaViola moved over and rafted on the AmaStella in the evening. Bob thought this would be a problem, but it wasn't so much of one. With luggage in the hall it was a bit tight for the scooter to get through, but we went down to breakfast and this time I had the A+ breakfast just to see what it was. It had sausage, bacon, a minute steak, a fried egg, and a grilled tomato. I couldn't eat all the sausage and bacon.
German cat bought in the ship store for our cat sitter

German cat bought in the ship store for our cat sitter

Blueberry soup recipe

Blueberry soup recipe


We put the luggage out a little early and did the last bathroom run and checked to be sure that we hadn't left anything, and went down to the foyer a little early. Our luggage was still there in the foyer. The drill is - you put your luggage out half an hour before your disembarkation time, and someone takes it down to the lobby. Then people shuttle the luggage down to a tent on street end of the pier.
Crew taking suitcases down the dock

Crew taking suitcases down the dock


The guy with the yellow thing is moving pallets down from the ship

The guy with the yellow thing is moving pallets down from the ship


As your transportation gets there, you get your bags and you are off. So we went out a little early - they were bunkering (water or fuel I don't know which) and Bob talked to the chief engineer for a few minutes.
Bunkering barge on the water side

Bunkering barge on the water side


Then we lifted the scooter over the ramp of AmaStella (as that ramp has a step on each end) and went down to the pier. It was a nice day - sunny and cool but without much wind. Our suitcases were under the tent.
There was also a provisions truck there unloading pallets

There was also a provisions truck there unloading pallets


I took a photo of the captain with the lady who has the big group from California.
Captain of the AmaViola and Travel Agent

Captain of the AmaViola and Travel Agent


There was a cab driver there who attempted to pick us up but he didn't know our name or where we were going so I concluded that he was not the proper person. I was getting concerned about our transport so I called the number I had called from the airport and got someone who didn't know anything about our transport. Then I got a call from our driver who wanted to know where we were. I did have the address on me, but I couldn't pronounce it, so I said we were between the Movenpick Hotel and Central Station. That allowed him to find it. It turned out that the guy who had been booked for the transport decided not to do it (maybe hung over from Kings Day), so the manager got this other guy to take us. And he did have the hotel address.
Leaving Amsterdam

Leaving Amsterdam

Highway to Alkmaar

Highway to Alkmaar


Picture going through a tunnel

Picture going through a tunnel


From the taxi window

From the taxi window


IMG_5690.JPG
Tulip fields from the taxi

Tulip fields from the taxi


He had a meter and on the meter, the price would have been 128+ € which was confusing to Bob as he didn't hear the guy say that we only needed to pay 83 € which was the discount rate.

Posted by greatgrandmaR 20:22 Archived in Netherlands Comments (0)

Arriving in Alkmaar

Checking in and Lunch


View 2015 Costa Rica (plus 1996 and 2008) & 2016 Tulip Cruise on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

It was raining like crazy on the way to Alkmaar. We got to the hotel about 10:30 and checked in. It is a big room
Hotel reflected in the canal

Hotel reflected in the canal


Beds

Beds


Wardrobe, TV and Desk (on right) with scooter

Wardrobe, TV and Desk (on right) with scooter


and has both a tub with a shower and a handicapped shower with a seat in one corner.
IMG_5696.jpgHandicapped shower

Handicapped shower


Handicapped toilet

Handicapped toilet


It got to be about 12 and we went out for lunch.
Statue of a shepherd near the canal

Statue of a shepherd near the canal


I decided to go to the museum cafe. This is the building opposite the church. In addition to the library, this is where the museum is and also an Art Center
Stichting Bibliotheek Kennernerwaard

Stichting Bibliotheek Kennernerwaard

Museum building - Cafe on left

Museum building - Cafe on left


View from the museum cafe

View from the museum cafe


There was some language barrier
Flowers on the counter to order

Flowers on the counter to order

Table flowers

Table flowers


but we eventually got a cheese sandwich, a tomato based soup and tea for 25.5€
Box to pick tea bag from

Box to pick tea bag from


Cheese sandwich

Cheese sandwich


Tables in the Culture Cafe

Tables in the Culture Cafe


7625217-Looking_into_the_shop_Alkmaar.jpgPart of the shop next to the cafe

Part of the shop next to the cafe

.
Then I thought the rain had stopped so we started out, but the rain started again so we decided to go through the museum.
IMG_5700.jpg
Lobby

Lobby

On the wall of the lobby

On the wall of the lobby

But first I showed the lady at the desk the copy of the Polaroid of the cheese market that Daddy took. She said her colleague was the "Cheese Father" and would like to see it. So he came and he identified the two men and said that they were both dead (which isn't a surprise as they would be well over 100 years old today). He asked me to bring the photo tomorrow as they would be interested. This was a good tip.

The exhibit was on the -1 floor. That is it was in the basement. There was an elevator. One of the exhibits is the 'Portrait of Alkmaar' which presents the "DNA" of Alkmaar. Alkmaar is full of history and wonderful old architecture. In a thousand years Alkmaar grew from a settlement with ten farms to a proud city with 100,000 inhabitants. In the portrait hall are five themed islands showing important or typical objects. Each theme island is introduced by a special Alkmaarder (in a video). There are numerous portraits, cityscapes and landscapes of the areaPainting of the town

Painting of the town


View of town and country

View of town and country


Portrait of Dirck van de Reemister and cabinet

Portrait of Dirck van de Reemister and cabinet

4A66C75AA06C6D37341AA4234CD60D88.jpgChina display

China display


Officers of the Old Civic Guard in Landscape 1613

Officers of the Old Civic Guard in Landscape 1613


Officers of the Old Civic Guard in a Landscape 1613 - There is no other painting of civic guardsmen on a day out. In the distance is Alkmaar's Great Church, and the artist is in the center with his wife.
Officers of the old Civic Guard 1657. Standing proudly in the center the captains Jacob  Baert and Cornelis Groot

Officers of the old Civic Guard 1657. Standing proudly in the center the captains Jacob Baert and Cornelis Groot


The main part of the museum was called THE VICTORY!!! Alkmaar is very proud of the fact that they were the first Dutch city to withstand the Spanish siege during the Eighty Years' War. There was a seven week siege which ended on October 8, 1573 This eventually led to the creation of the independent Republic of the United Netherlands and the heyday of the Golden Age.
Explanation of the victory

Explanation of the victory


I found the exhibit a little confusing - there were arrows to follow on the floor, and we got to TV screens where we heard from various participants such as Jacob, Catholic farmer Dirk, Protestant dweller Cornelia, and Spanish soldier Juan. Passages from the diary of Nanning Foreest theatrical visualizations, paintings of the siege, letters, musket balls, armor and artillery - including a gun from approximately 1570
IMG_3618.jpgWeapons of the time

Weapons of the time


Battle painting

Battle painting


This is what one of the presentations said:
Part of the video presentation

Part of the video presentation


The retreat
"In the early morning on the eighth day of the month, all the Spaniards left. And so the siege of Alkmaar which had lasted for seven weeks and which had cost the Spaniards huge sums of money and material damage and would be to their everlasting shame and discredit, was lifted.
Part of the video presentation

Part of the video presentation


By contrast, God brought the city of Alkmaar prestige in their joyous victory and celebrated triumph, so the city might justifiably and honourably be counted among the foremost cities of Holland."
There is also a display of a 2010 excavation in Alkmaar where archaeologists discovered skeletons in mass graves - including a skull with bullet hole.
Two skeletons from a small mass grave 1573

Two skeletons from a small mass grave 1573


But I couldn't really tell where the end of the exhibit as the arrows seemed to be circular.
Golden Age

Golden Age


The last part of the main exhibit was "The Golden Age" . To show their gratitude for the city's loyal stand, William of Orange and the States of Holland awarded Alkmaar the Weight House revenues. Painting of the Weight House 1660. It was mainly cheese that was weighed and traded here. In 1679 a record 500,000 pounds was traded in a single day. That was in 1581 and it launched an economic boom: Alkmaar's own Golden Age.
Painting of the weigh house by an unknown artist

Painting of the weigh house by an unknown artist

Gold from the Golden Age

Gold from the Golden Age


Nijenburg Spherical Clock 1690

Nijenburg Spherical Clock 1690

Judgement of Count Willem the Good 1618

Judgement of Count Willem the Good 1618

Golden Age tour

Golden Age tour


Pierre Gole art cabinet with floral motifs

Pierre Gole art cabinet with floral motifs


The old masters are accompanied by a collection of ceremonial silver,
Traveler's cutlery and case

Traveler's cutlery and case


including seven decorated tazza's (Goblets) and seventeenth-century porcelain and glassware of all types and sizes. A particular object is a cabinet from estate Nijenburg with beautiful paintings of Jesus and the Samaritan woman. (below)
Nijenburg Lutheran Cabinet c 1665

Nijenburg Lutheran Cabinet c 1665


On the zero floor (ground floor or our first floor) there was an exhibit of the work of an artist of the name of Van Blaaderen who appeared to have phases where he emulated most of the impressionists.
Introductory text on Van Blaaderen

Introductory text on Van Blaaderen


Van Blaaderen painting

Van Blaaderen painting


Van Blaaderen painting

Van Blaaderen painting


Van Blaaderen painting (winter)

Van Blaaderen painting (winter)

Van Blaaderen painting

Van Blaaderen painting


While we were there a woman came and asked about the Luggie - she said she had a grandson who had been paralyzed in a bicycle accident and he wanted something that made him look less 'crippled' So we showed her the scooter and she even tried it out.

On the way back to the hotel, we stopped in the Grote Kerk
Side nearest the square

Side nearest the square


- there were 1700 people buried there, mostly under the floor. It is actually no longer an church, but it is a very interesting building.
Floor composed of slate tile grave markers

Floor composed of slate tile grave markers


Inside the burial stones made a clacking noise when I went over them with the scooter.
Floor burial locations

Floor burial locations

Close-up of an emblem

Close-up of an emblem


Each of the tombstones bears an emblem, mostly coats of arms and occupational insignia. Bob and I took some photos of the slate floor inscriptions. I asked if there was any way of telling where the various burials were, but apparently there was a meeting going on in the room where the information was.
Close-up of one of the inscriptions

Close-up of one of the inscriptions

Pieter Palinck and Josina Willemsdochter van Foreest

Pieter Palinck and Josina Willemsdochter van Foreest


This one is copper and is now on the wall. They did identify the plaque on the wall which was for Pieter Claessoen Palinck & Josina Willemsdochter van Foreest - a husband and wife who died in 1536. The church booklet said this was a copper tombstone on the floor near where we entered, but I saw it on the wall. Rubbings have been done of this copper stone. There are also plaques on the walls. There is a textboard from 1672 with the rules on how to behave in church. In the beginning of the 16th century a brick annex was constructed in the corner of the northern transept for the bellows of the Van Covelens organ. For many years a small prison existed under this annex. Anyone exhibiting undesirable behavior in church would be imprisoned here for the night, unless he was prepared to pay a fine of three guilders. There are two textboard dating from 1605 relating in Latin and Dutch the story of the church buildings that formerly existed here
IMG_5767.JPGPlaques on the wall

Plaques on the wall


Going back a little - We went in the side door of the Grote Sint Laurenskerk (there is a handicapped entrance). And I took a photo of the statue that was outside first. It is the statue to Maerten Pietersz van der Meij. He was the city's carpenter, but became famous by smuggling letters to and from the city during the Spanish occupation. The artist Mari Andriessen did the statute in 1965
Statue beside the church

Statue beside the church


Afterward, I took some photos of the outside of the church. It is a very large building which is built in the shape of a Latin cross (the diagonal is shorter than the vertical). According to the church history, there was a church here back in 600. A church was founded on this site in 901 in honor of St. Lawrence. But excavations have only found the remains of a 12th century chapel. In 1468, when they were building tower on this church, it collapsed and destroyed part of the church, It was decided to built an entirely new church - starting in 1470 and completed in what was, for those days, a very short time around 1520. Much of the interior and exterior was destroyed in the 1566 iconoclasm - this was when Dutch Protestants were destroying the Roman Catholic art (icons). Until 1570, Sint Lawrence church was Roman Catholic. It remained Protestant after the Reformation until 1996 when it was designated as a museum and multifunctional building.
Windows, side entrance and statue

Windows, side entrance and statue

Carvings on the side entrance

Carvings on the side entrance

Side of the church away from the square

Side of the church away from the square


Plain end of the church

Plain end of the church


The exterior is faced with what the little booklet I picked up in the church calls "white natural stone" although it looks yellow or cream colored to me in the photos taken on the 28th - the ones on the 29th were more cream colored.
Red addition on the 'back' end of the church

Red addition on the 'back' end of the church


There was a model of the church inside, and we also took photos of that.
594688187623703-Model_of_the.._X_Alkmaar.jpgModel of the Grote Kerk (inside of the Grote Kerk)

Model of the Grote Kerk (inside of the Grote Kerk)

Model of the church showing the 'back'

Model of the church showing the 'back'


The interior is lined with red-yellow bricks which are partly plastered.
7623757-Interior_with_the_Great_Organ_Alkmaar.jpgThe Great Organ

The Great Organ


At the end of the church is the "world famous Great Organ" which was built around 1640 by father Van Hagerbeer and his two sons. It was modernized at the start of the 18th century by the North German Frans Caspar Schnitger. The case of the organ was designed by Jacob van Campen who also designed several other prominent buildings.
Great Organ

Great Organ


The shutters to close the case are the largest in the world and there is a painting representing Virtue Crushing Vice (in the form of a snake). There is another organ on the side of the church which dates from 1551. This is the oldest playable organ in the world and was restored in 2000. You can also see in that photo the high transept windows which are the highest on the mainland of Europe
Oldest Organ by the high transept windows

Oldest Organ by the high transept windows


I have included in this set of photos, a picture of a painting that is in the Alkmaar Museum. It is a painting attributed to Pieter Jansz Saenredam who was a specialist in church interiors. It matches pretty well with our photos of the church. It was painted about 1665 although it is not signed or dated. Who commissioned it? No-one knows. But it hung in the town hall in the 18th century. Pieter Jansz Saenredam worked meticulously basing his composition on preparatory drawings and measurements. If he painted it, it was done toward the end of his life.
1665 painting of the interior

1665 painting of the interior


Ceiling of the vault painted by Jacob van Oostanen

Ceiling of the vault painted by Jacob van Oostanen

IMG_3666.JPG
I took a photo of some woodwork which has the date of 1635. Originally I thought this was the place where Floris V was buried, but the date doesn't match, and I can't match this up with anything in the church information.
May be the Confessional or Stalls

May be the Confessional or Stalls


Bob took some photos of a ship hanging in the church. This was unexpected. According to tradition, this is the scale model of a ship from 1667 called "De Ruyter mijn naam" (De Ruyter is my name), which refers to the victorious expedition of Michiel de Ruyter to Chatham. It has on it (which you can't see in any of the photos) paintings - on the mirror at the stern the panorama of Alkmaar. There are also four portraits of ladies in the windows of the officer's quarters. So if you go into the church, look for the paintings
Scale model ship

Scale model ship


The sacristry has a wooden vault on which are painted the crests of Delft, Oudewater and Alkmaar (towns once united through a trade agreement). There is also the crest of the patrimonial lands of Charles V and a mirrored Dutch lion honoring the crest.
Crest near the sacristy

Crest near the sacristy

After we got back to the hotel and dried off and warmed up a bit and it stopped raining, Bob walked over to the RR station
Street near station

Street near station

and got some money changed and came back with Burger King for dinner. Tomorrow we visit the Cheese Market.

Posted by greatgrandmaR 20:24 Archived in Netherlands Comments (0)

Then (1950) and Now (2016) at the Cheese Market

Follow the Crowds


View 2015 Costa Rica (plus 1996 and 2008) & 2016 Tulip Cruise on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

Today (April 29th) we went down for breakfast. The hotel breakfast was a good one and not as expensive as the one for $25 each that we had in Amsterdam. This breakfast was $17 each. The breakfast area was quite crowded because most people at the hotel were having breakfast, but there was adequate food.
Breakfast tables

Breakfast tables


Juices on the buffet

Juices on the buffet


I took some packages off the buffet without knowing what they were. One of the packages was called "fruit sprinkles for bread" and it was a sort of fruit candy
Fruit sprinkles for bread

Fruit sprinkles for bread


After I got some food, Bob went back and got some more for me.
Bob at the buffet

Bob at the buffet


My breakfast

My breakfast


There was a busload of Japanese tourists and another one of German tourists (I talked to one of the German ladies). They had been to a farm on the previous day and to a factory to see how the cheese was made. The cheese market did not start until 10, so I thought 9:30 would be time enough to go down there. But I was wrong.
Rental boat barge

Rental boat barge


When we left to go down to the Waagplein, we passed this place near our hotel which said it was Alkmaarse bootjes Verhuut & Verkoop. You can hire a boat from them on a weekend for € 15.00 per hour including pillows and fuel. (In good weather, but when we were there it was raining and a Friday). I took photos of the buildings as we went. We passed De Nachtegaal on the way to the Cheese Market and I took some photos of it because I thought it looked like an interesting building. I was surprised to find out that it was a restaurant.
De Nachtegaal - top stories

De Nachtegaal - top stories


Roof

Roof


The Old City Hall (Stadhuis) in Alkmaar caught our eye on the way to the cheese market.
Lions on the staircase of the Old City Hall

Lions on the staircase of the Old City Hall


It was built between 1509 and 1520 in the Gothic style.
Facade of the building

Facade of the building


Bob walking by the Stadhuis

Bob walking by the Stadhuis


On one corner is a tower with a pear shaped spire.
Pear shaped tower

Pear shaped tower

Looking up from the street

Looking up from the street


Eight years after it was built it was mostly burned down, but it has obviously been rebuilt. It was made a national monument in 1969. Now it still has some municipal functions
Town hall spire above the street

Town hall spire above the street

I was able to tell where the cheese market was without looking at a map because streams of people were walking in that direction. We passed stalls selling souvenirs.
Tchotchkes

Tchotchkes


Wooden shoes

Wooden shoes


More wooden shoes

More wooden shoes


I got photos of The Waag which is on the Waagplein. (The Weigh House is on the Weigh House Square). It was built in the 14th century as a chapel for the adjacent Holy Spirit hospital. In 1566, the Bishop gave permission to re-purpose the building. When the building was converted, they added the Renaissance style facade.
Looking up at the weight house 2016

Looking up at the weight house 2016


The current design dates from 1884. The original tower was replaced by a larger one which contains a carillon.
Top of the Waag steeple

Top of the Waag steeple


There are four sides to the tower - each with a clock. One one side, underneath the clock it says vive memor leti fugit hora which is Latin for "Ever mindful of death, time flies" On another side it says Singulas horas, singulas vitasputa The first part of this is "Every Hour, Every ??" The decorative side of the building is not right over the place where the cheese porters take the cheese to be weighed.
Vive memor leti fugit hora

Vive memor leti fugit hora


Atop the façade of the building is the Latin proverb: "SPQA RESTITVIT VIRTVS ABLATAE JVRA BILANCIS".
SPQA motto

SPQA motto


This means : SPQA (Senatus PopulusQue Alkmaris - Council and People of Alkmaar) by virtue of its courage and strength, restored the rights to the balance to the people and government of Alkmaar." This refers to Alkmaar's famous victory against Spanish Roman Catholics. Also on this side it says 1520 and under it "RENOVATVM 1884". In 1950, when we visited Alkmaar, the Waag was still in use as an actual weigh house for a real cheese market.
Weighing house -1950 with me, my mom and sister

Weighing house -1950 with me, my mom and sister


Now it is is part of a show put on for tourists. But my photo is pretty close to the one of Daddy's
Then (1950) on the right and Now (2016)-weigh house

Then (1950) on the right and Now (2016)-weigh house


But there were people standing four or five deep all around the market area and from the scooter I couldn't even see the big TV screen they had.
Bob's view

Bob's view


I gradually worked my way around to the other side of the square and then it started to rain so I ducked into the Cheese Museum.
From inside the cheese museum

From inside the cheese museum


From there I could see out between people a bit of what was going on.
Trying to see over the crowds from inside the cheese museum

Trying to see over the crowds from inside the cheese museum


Cheese in the cheese museum

Cheese in the cheese museum

Obstructed view

Obstructed view


Cheese Father in the market

Cheese Father in the market


I talked to the man who was slicing cheese up for people to taste
Man cutting up cheese in the corner

Man cutting up cheese in the corner


and showed him the photo and after a bit, he went and got the Cheese Father.
Cheese Father in the Cheese Museum shop

Cheese Father in the Cheese Museum shop


The oldest one of the cheese porters is called the Cheese Father. Traditionally he wears orange - a different color from one of the four colors (Green, Red, Blue and Yellow) worn by the porters. But when we were there, he was wearing green. According to the Cheese Market website:
In the Middle Ages, it was common practice to establish a guild for every professional group, the cheese carriers established theirs in 1593. The cheese carriers’ guild consists of 30 men and the cheese father. The Cheese father is the head of the four forwarding companies - recognised by an orange hat, black cane with silver mountings, and the Alkmaar coat of arms on his chest. Cheese carriers refer to him as “dad”.
De Kaasdragers carrying the cheeses 1950

De Kaasdragers carrying the cheeses 1950


The Cheese Father couldn't see the picture very well because he didn't have his reading glasses so I asked Bob for his, and with Bob's glasses, he could tell who the people were in the photo. He said, sadly "All dead"
Cheese Father looking at Dad's Polaroid

Cheese Father looking at Dad's Polaroid


I told him he could have the photo for their museum.
IMG_5777_C.._Market-057.jpgIMG_5777_C.._Market-086.jpg
And he let me go through the barriers and got me a seat in front.
Cheese Father behind me

Cheese Father behind me


I took a bunch of photos -De Kaasdragers (cheese porters) move so fast that I used the sports photography setting of the camera so I could take rapid fire pictures in succession.
Photo 1

Photo 1

Photo 2

Photo 2

Photo 4

Photo 4

Photo 6

Photo 6


Photo 7

Photo 7


Cheese maid up by the weigh house

Cheese maid up by the weigh house


We saw two pretty girls in costume at the cheese market. This is new since our first visit in 1950
The Cheese Market website says:
The Cheesemaid’s job is to promote cheese and the Cheese Market. The idea came from the Dutch Dairy Board, who are responsible for the promotion of Dutch cheese at home and abroad. There are always at least two Cheesemaids in attendance at the Alkmaar Cheese Market. They sell the "Kaasexpres" magazine and sometimes pose in photographs with tourists. A logo was designed especially for this, depicting a girl in traditional costume. ... In 1961, the Cheese Maid was named Frau Antju. Now, Frau Antje is been a celebrity, appearing in advertising campaigns and at important events. And the Cheese Maids also appear in costume at the Cheese Market
Cheese maids

Cheese maids


7632585-another_view_Alkmaar.jpg
large_7632502-Past_the_porters_Alkmaar.jpg7632579-Between_Umbrellas_Alkmaar.jpg7632580-Over_the_Green_Hats_Alkmaar.jpg
820187767631917-Another_pict..na_Alkmaar.jpgIMG_5777_C.._Market-086.jpgIMG_5777_C.._Market-124.jpgIMG_5777_C.._Market-142.jpg
TV Camera from inside the cheese museum

TV Camera from inside the cheese museum


Cheese cart in person and on TV

Cheese cart in person and on TV

Cheese maids on the TV above heads

Cheese maids on the TV above heads

Overhead view on the screen

Overhead view on the screen

Cheese Carriers on the TV

Cheese Carriers on the TV


I also took a video with my cell phone. I don't think I can replicate Daddy's Polaroid because all my photos are from next to the building out toward the crowds and his has the building in the background
Then (1950) and Now (2016)-cheese porters

Then (1950) and Now (2016)-cheese porters


I assume that the various personnel in the cheese market performance are identified in the presentation. But I did not hear the loudspeaker so I am going by what is written on the website. In addition to the Cheese Father there is the
Zetter - Puts the cheese from the lorries on the market early in the morning, and loads the barrows. They are dressed in black trousers and a blue shirt.
7631850-PC_Cheese_unloading_Alkmaar.jpgUnloading the trucks

Unloading the trucks


Zetter Removing rain cover

Zetter Removing rain cover


Ingooier When the cheeses are weighed, the ingooiers toss them from the barrows in wood handcarts and take them to the lorries. They are recognised by their black trousers and light fawn shirts.
7627733-During_the_cheese_market_Alkmaar.jpg
Ingooier  with the wooden cart

Ingooier with the wooden cart


Cheese Market 2016

Cheese Market 2016


Vastman - An experienced cheese carrier working for one of the forwarding companies. The so-called forwarding companies, are active in the guild, each of them having their own particular colour: red, green, blue, and yellow, and consisting of 6 cheese carriers and a tasman. The colours are also seen in the cheese carriers’ straw hats, bow ties, and barrows.
Tasman - The tasman is recognised by a black leather purse around his waist, and stands at the scales. Bills used to be settled with him. He checkmarks the cheeses after weighing them. The tasman has been in service for the longest.
Voorman A “voorman” is the head of a forwarding company, and the oldest member. Also referred to as “overman”. Every two years, an overman is selected from the forwarding company. He has a silver sign with a ribbon in his company’s colour.
Voormen?

Voormen?


Weigh house during the cheese market

Weigh house during the cheese market


After things calmed down a bit, I went out to take some more photos
Bleachers late in the morning

Bleachers late in the morning

Market from behind the barrier

Market from behind the barrier


Wagon and pallets

Wagon and pallets

Crowds the bring in lots of income

Crowds the bring in lots of income


Approaching street organ

Approaching street organ

Street Organ

Street Organ


We saw a street organ like the one we saw at the tulip gardens. A street organ is an automatic mechanical pneumatic organ designed to be mobile enough to play its music in the street. Dutch street organ are large organs that play book music. They are equipped with multiple ranks of pipes and percussion. They are powered with a belt drive from a small battery powered motor or donkey engine, allowing the organ grinder to collect money. Slightly smaller than the semi-trailer-sized fairground organ the Dutch street organ is nevertheless able to produce enough volume to be heard easily on a busy street corner. Modern Dutch street organs are frequently trailer mounted, and sized for towing behind a pickup or other light truck
Another view of the street organ

Another view of the street organ

Street organ at the end of the street

Street organ at the end of the street


Store next to where the street organ was set up

Store next to where the street organ was set up


Then it started to rain again
Weigh house after the Cheese Market is over

Weigh house after the Cheese Market is over


and I went back into the cheese museum
Post cards 1€ or 0.5 €

Post cards 1€ or 0.5 €

Wall of post cards

Wall of post cards

smart phone ap

smart phone ap

Wall above the crowd

Wall above the crowd


and asked them about buying some cheese to send home. She gave me a map and marked on it a cheese shop that was two doors from the PO. I put on the poncho I got when I rented a scooter at Disney World and we went out into the street.
It was on a pedestrian street

It was on a pedestrian street


While we were on our way to buy cheese, I saw a jewelry store
storefront

storefront


and ducked in there to shelter from the rain. I bought a sapphire ring to maybe give to my granddaughter
ring

ring


In the end I gave this ring to my daughter whose birthstone is sapphire and bought another one for my granddaughter. We found the cheese store.
view from the scooter

view from the scooter


Cheeses on the shelf

Cheeses on the shelf

The red cheese was what we bought

The red cheese was what we bought


We bought some cheese and then took it to the PO
Post office logo

Post office logo


and bought a box and some bubble wrap and the lady at the PO taped up the boxes and we mailed them. It was time for lunch so because it was cold, we tried to find a place to eat where we could eat inside. I tried this place.
Hap Wat from the outside

Hap Wat from the outside


Fried chicken (I could read that)

Fried chicken (I could read that)


But I couldn't find a table.
Hap Wat sign from inside

Hap Wat sign from inside


Burger Tijd (Burger Time in English)

Burger Tijd (Burger Time in English)


We saw this restaurant when we were looking for a place to eat lunch in Alkmaar after the cheese market. Their website says that they have the best beef burger in Alkmaar. Apparently the burgers are delivered to the customers. Eventually we went into a cafe
Outside of the Grand Cafe samen

Outside of the Grand Cafe samen

IMG_5777_C.._Market-218.jpgBar area from our table

Bar area from our table


IMG_5777_C.._Market-219.jpgIMG_5777_C.._Market-224.jpg
Bob ordered the anytime breakfast
Bob's fried egg, cheese and tea

Bob's fried egg, cheese and tea

My cheese sandwich

My cheese sandwich


I just had a cheese sandwich and a cup of tea.
Dessert refrigerator (we didn't get any)

Dessert refrigerator (we didn't get any)

Bob suddenly panicked because he couldn't find his passport. He knew he had not put it into the safe. I thought I remembered him saying that he wasn't going to take it because he wouldn't need it, but he didn't remember saying that. So we started out from the cafe to go back to the hotel.
xIMG_5777_.._Market-240.jpg
xIMG_5777_.._Market-245.jpg
Bob was looking at the map (I forgot that he really couldn't see it without his glasses) and he took us the completely wrong way and we were down at the other end of Alkmaar. We came to the Accijnstoren
The Accijnstoren

The Accijnstoren


which is square and built in brick with natural stones. The tower has a loud bell. It was initially a kind of tax office. Imported goods had to be declared here, the excise taxes that produced them were an important source of income for the city.
Fender guitar

Fender guitar

Games Workshop

Games Workshop


HT Cinema Sexshop

HT Cinema Sexshop


Bob walking back from the far end of the old town

Bob walking back from the far end of the old town


Although since the old part of town isn't that big, we weren't too far out of the way. Then he remembered that he had left his umbrella at the cafe. So we found our way back there, but it wasn't there.
Cheese Museum after the market is over

Cheese Museum after the market is over


Once we were there, I knew which way to go to get back to the hotel, and when we got there, Bob's passport was right there. So we just had the lost umbrella. I am not accustomed to Bob losing things. Usually it is me that loses things. After we got back to the hotel (and found Bob's passport), we watched TV while the scooter charged up. And then we set out again for two nearby cemeteries - Sint Barbara RC Church and the Alkmaar General Cemetery. The lady at the desk told us to head for the hospital
Arendshof

Arendshof


Molen van Groot

Molen van Groot


Windmills are an iconic part of the landscape - this one is called Mill De Groot (The Great), but it is better known as "De Molen van Piet", or Piet's Mill (referring to the family who own the mill). It is situated on the Singel Alkmaar a little way down the road from our hotel. The mill was built in 1769 as a corn mill. Since 1993, the blades rotate merely 'for show'. You can see the inside of this iconic mill on 'Open Monumenten Dag'
Floral Clock

Floral Clock


Matthias Laurentius Church

Matthias Laurentius Church


When we got to the hospital we wandered around until we found Sint Barbara. The gate was closed and locked
St Barbara's gate

St Barbara's gate

Sint-Barbara

Sint-Barbara

Photos through Sint-Barbara's fence

Photos through Sint-Barbara's fence


Bob took a few photos through the fence. We went in the direction of the General Cemetery which was in a park. The path took us through the zoo.
Aviary outside the gate

Aviary outside the gate


Map pointing to where we were

Map pointing to where we were


We saw a llama and a Chinese pheasant, doves, parakeets and some chickens among other things. It was sunny but cold. The General Cemetery was open and we took photos.
Alkmaar General Cemetery

Alkmaar General Cemetery

Map of the General Cemetery

Map of the General Cemetery


UNCEM_1468689825751.jpgUNCEM_1469039820078.jpg
Bob mostly in A an B sections and I was mostly on the other side in H section. Then I asked the GPS in my phone how to get back to the hotel and there was a single road which was a straight shot instead of wandering around the hospital.
xIMG_5777_.._Market-268.jpglarge_IMG_5777_C.._Market-269.jpg
Bob complained about my holding the phone while running the scooter, but had admitted at the end that this was a good route. We came out right at the gymnasium next to the hotel. When we came in I asked about places that would deliver food and there is a website which has restaurants (although it was in Dutch). The girl at the desk took pity on us and ordered a pizza which was €8.95 and was kind of a medium pizza.
hotel elevator

hotel elevator


It was delivered to our room.
7623952-Pizza_box_Alkmaar.jpgPizza

Pizza

Posted by greatgrandmaR 20:27 Archived in Netherlands Comments (0)

No-Show Taxi to Schiphol - April 30th

Flying to Heathrow on BA


View 2015 Costa Rica (plus 1996 and 2008) & 2016 Tulip Cruise on greatgrandmaR's travel map.

I got to thinking that each time we had been picked up by the City Airport Taxi, they had been late. So I decided I wanted to move the time to 6:30 instead of 7. So I called the various numbers and all I got was answering machines in Dutch. The desk girl at the hotel tried and she had no better luck. So I found the website and emailed them and got an email back about 2330 which said that they would send us another contract. But they didn't.

We set the alarm for 5:30 and packed (except for nightgown and toothbrush) the night before. We got up and I ate some string cheese and a piece of bread that was in a packet that I had picked up at breakfast the day before, but hadn't eaten, and Bob had a croissant and some cheese that he had saved from lunch the day before. We went down in the elevator at 6:30 and the City Airport taxi was not there.
Bob at the hotel waiting for a taxi

Bob at the hotel waiting for a taxi


So I called the emergency number and got an Dutch answering machine. Ten minutes later I called again - same thing. So the hotel called a taxi for us. They did not return my call until 6:55, by which time we were well on our way.
Leaving Alkmaar at 6:45

Leaving Alkmaar at 6:45


So my POV is that they did not come in time to pick us up and I should not have to pay them (and I didn't). The taxi that they called charged the same amount (80 €) He had an ap on his phone that told him where we should check in at Schiphol. I didn't try to get a wheelchair - I just went in on the scooter. Check-in was relatively painless. We went trough security on our own and eventually got to the gate without going to the club first. Here they took the scooter away and I thought they would give it back to us at Heathrow and Bob thought it would be checked through. As it turned out, we were both wrong
After Boarding -From the plane

After Boarding -From the plane


7687216-Shuttle_To_the_Airport.jpg7613576-Airplane_Arrival_and_Departure.jpgLeaving the Netherlands

Leaving the Netherlands

Breakfast on the plane

Breakfast on the plane


The flight to Heathrow was relatively short although there was a delay taking off and a delay in getting a gate. We flew right over London
Tower Bridge and City Hall

Tower Bridge and City Hall

Tower Bridge and The Shard

Tower Bridge and The Shard

Millenium Wheel on the Thames

Millenium Wheel on the Thames

The London EYe and Golden Jubilee Bridge

The London EYe and Golden Jubilee Bridge

Westminster Bridge

Westminster Bridge

Westminster and on the left St James park

Westminster and on the left St James park

The Harrodian School and Leg o' Mutton

The Harrodian School and Leg o' Mutton

English countryside near London

English countryside near London

Fairgrounds

Fairgrounds

Posted by greatgrandmaR 03:28 Archived in Netherlands Comments (0)

(Entries 11 - 15 of 16) « Page 1 2 [3] 4 »