Last Day :-(  A Walk To Rembrandt Square, My Special Purchase, & A Few Other Shots

Last Day :-( A Walk To Rembrandt Square, My Special Purchase, & A Few Other Shots

Well, it’s our last day in Amsterdam… 10 days flew by!

Susie & Matt went out for some last minute shopping.

I decided to try the action video cam again. I know a little bit about photography (have been doing it on and off for 30+ years), but the video stuff is new to me and I have a lot to learn. Here are my initial thoughts. I like photography because you can capture a single moment in time with great detail, but sometimes it can’t capture the entire scene. Video on the other hand can sometimes better capture an entire scene, but can lack details of the moment. Plus a video can include music/audio from the scene.

Here is an example. I could show you a photograph of the view from our apartment window, but a short video (with audio) can do a better job. You can hear the sounds of bicycle, horns, birds chirping… No great work of art, but it illustrates my point.

While Matt & Susie were out, I decided to try making a timelapse video of my walk from our apartment to Rembrandt Square. Here it is:

My Special Purchase

NO! I didn’t buy a bunch of dope to bring back home 🙂

Many of you know that I wear Hawaiian shirts on Fridays (yes, even in the winter). Every country I travel to I try and buy a Hawaiian shirt. I was freaking out because after 9 days, I hadn’t seen one Hawaiian shirt. So decided to try one last place, the Waterloo open market.

Eureka!!! Within 5 minutes of looking, I found Nirvana… I found this:

What a GREAT shirt and I only paid 10 euros!!! I hit the jackpot!  I am happy 🙂

FYI… Susie thought my purchase decision (and my sense of fashion) was horrid 🙂

We spent most of the afternoon & evening packing and cleaning up the apartment because we have to leave at 8am tomorrow 🙁

So I will leave you with a few of my favorite shots from the trip. Thanks for reading!







Rainy Day :-( But A Special Sunset Arrived Just In Time

Rainy Day :-( But A Special Sunset Arrived Just In Time

It rained on and off for much of the day 🙁  HOWEVER, it did clear-up around 8pm and the light was very special.

So Susie & Matt went to the Van Gogh museum (I have been there twice, so I stayed home & blogged)

Here are a couple of shots from the day/night…

Susie & Matt on their way to the Van Gogh found this awesome car in front of our apartment. Here are some details from WIKI: The Canta is a two-seat microcar from the Netherlands specifically created for disabled drivers.[1] It was developed in 1995 by Waaijenberg together with the Delft University of Technology. In addition to the standard petrol-engined production models, an electric Canta was designed for the German market but it has remained at the prototype stage. In the Netherlands, it is classified as a mobility aid because the width of the vehicle is only 1.10 metres, thus it may – unlike larger microcars – be used on cycle paths as well as sidewalks and footpaths; in addition a driver’s license is not required. I did find out that the car has Honda engine (160cc!!) and generates a whopping…. 5.5hp!!!! Top speed is 30mph… I saw one drive away and it sounded like a lawn mower 🙂

A better shot of the stairs in our place. Pretty steep!!!

Amazing the building still stands with this much sagging.

When Susie & Matt returned, the sky started to open and we decided to go out for dinner.

I had this for dinner. Yum!!! FYI there is some charcoal in the box to keep the meat warm. You can see a piece of it under the chicken. It was delicious… and nutritious!! Matt had the same thing, but got the large portion!!

After a delightful dinner, the sky really got special and cast some spectacular light. The only bummer was I left my good camera at the apartment. These shots were taken with my pocket camera, a Sony RX100 (which is GREAT pocket camera, but not match for my main camera – a Sony A6300)

Here are some photos:

A lucky shot… Cue the bird in flight 🙂

It was a wonderful evening.




A Boat Tour Of The Canals & Chuck Norris :-)

A Boat Tour Of The Canals & Chuck Norris :-)

The morning started out a little cloudy and the boat tour looked iffy. However, it cleared up around 1pm and we took a boat tour of the canals.

Here are a few pics:

This is Max, our boat captain. We decided to take a small open boat tour, rather than the large glass covered boat tours. The smaller boats can go into some canals that the big boats can’t.

The city looks a little bit different from water level.

I decided to try the action cam again and I had Matt help. Note the use of the gimbal, the stick attached to the camera.

With Matt’s help and the gimbal, I got much better results. Here is time lapse video of the boat tour:

Here are few more shots from the tour:

If you have been paying attention, you would have noticed that about 90% of the building are 3 windows across. A few are 4 windows wide (built by the rich guys 🙂 ) Here is one of only 4 buildings that are 1 window wide. This building is 8 feet wide and about 50 feet deep.

This is a famous spot. They say you can see 7 bridges down this view.

As the boat headed to the dock, I could not help thinking about Chuck Norris 🙂

(Whose of you who have followed my other travel blogs know I try to work in Chuck Norris into every blog)

Since this is not a proper picture of Chuck…

Now back to our regularly scheduled program 🙂

After the tour we had a nice walk back to the apartment and the sun was casting some nice light and shadows. Here are few examples:

Hope you enjoyed the boat tour of the canals… we sure did. It was very civilized 🙂





Another Slow Day & It Is A Dogs World (and Wayne’s)

Another Slow Day & It Is A Dogs World (and Wayne’s)

Today it was grey with a few showers and a perfect day to visit a museum. Susie and Matt (our son) went to the Rijksmuseum to see the fabulous Night Watch painting by Rembrandt. This painting will take your breath away. It is 15 feet wide and 13 feet tall. Here is video to get an idea of the size:

I have been to the Rijksmuseum  3 times before so I stayed home and worked on the blog, but I did take a few shots today:

It’s A Dog’s World

I love it… a dog with a life vest on. 🙂

This doggie seems to be enjoying the ride 🙂

Excuse me… do you have any Grey Poupon?????

Here is an ancient historical reference for you younger fellas 🙂

And a NOT so ancient historical reference:

WOW! I worked Wayne’s World into the blog… but sadly no Chuck Norris… YET!

By the way our apartment is on the second floor of the building and there is no lift. These are the stairs. Checkout the steep angle. Land/space is at a premium in Amsterdam, so they built very steep stairways to conserve the living space in buildings.

Well that is it for today.

If it is nice tomorrow we will do a canal boat tour. Should be fun.





A Day Trip to Leiden & College Days

A Day Trip to Leiden & College Days

Today we decided to head out for a short day trip to Leiden, a 30 minute train ride from Amersdam.

First a little info from WIKI about Leiden:

Leiden is a city in the Dutch province of South Holland. It’s known for its centuries-old architecture and for Leiden University, the country’s oldest, dating from 1575. The university houses the Hortus botanicus Leiden Botanical Garden, founded in 1590, where the tulip was introduced to Western Europe. The Museum de Lakenhal displays works by the Dutch Masters including Rembrandt, who was born in Leiden.  

We got to Leiden around noon and decided to grab a quick lunch outdoors next to a canal. After lunch we set out to explore the town. So let’s start with some photos:

The first windmill we saw in Holland. The town had 2 of them.

Leiden has many canals just like Amsterdam.

We quickly found out that today was orientation day for the new students at Leiden University and the students and their activities were everywhere:

This was a “fort” built out of beer cases and the students were heavily sampling the product 🙂 Good old college days 🙂

There were several blocks lined with booths and tents representing all of the student clubs & organizations. Sad to say I didn’t see the Pokemon Club 🙁

Student everywhere!

Leiden is also famous for their gardened courtyards. We bought a map that showed 25 of them and we decided to checkout a few of them. I guess you could say we paid money for a map so we could look into other people’s backyards 🙂 Here are some pics of the courtyards we found:

This courtyard was part of a coop of 9 residents… all women. We spoke to one of the residents for about 20 minutes and she said it has been that way for decades… women only need apply. ALSO, the building in the middle of the photo is a small chapel with the oldest stain-glass windows in the country. Below are a couple of shots from inside the chapel.

Cue the bee 🙂 Sometimes you just get lucky!

After visiting a few courtyards, we decided to checkout a few of the churches in town…

After the church visits we climbed up to the old fort in the city. Here are few shots from the top:

This is one of the churches we visited.

Here are few parting shots as we left beautiful and charming Leiden:

It was a fun and relaxing day. We really enjoyed the day trip to Leiden.