Today felt like a holiday

It’s going well with the Corona virus trends here in The Netherlands. Cases, hospitalizations and deaths are rapidly declining while vaccination levels are rising.

So, as of last week, lockdown has eased somewhat, meaning that museums have opened again, under strict regulations of course. Mini me has been wanting to go to the Anne Frank House museum in Amsterdam for a while now. Both of our kids know Anne Frank’s story well, we just never actually went to the museum with them because, frankly, it’s always too packed. Now, with Corona restrictions in place, not many people are allowed in so we figured now would be the perfect time to go. We booked tickets in advance and this afternoon the four of us finally visited the famous annex behind the offices of Otto Frank’s company where the Frank family had been in hiding. Over the years I have been there 4 or 5 times but it was really good to visit this place with our kids.

After our visit we stopped for a bite to eat right outside the building, right beside the canal.

Junior then left to go and see his girlfriend while mini me, Mr Esther and I stayed in Amsterdam and walked around there for a bit. We also saw soccer fans dressed in orange walk around there as this evening The Netherlands plays its first soccer game in the European Championship against Ukraine. It’s an at home game, in Amsterdam.

We avoided the busiest shopping streets and at the end of the afternoon headed home again (first stopping for dinner in a small town not far from our home). Had some tea in our front garden…

… before this evening we too succumb to a little bit of orange fever. The shops and supermarkets have already started to go orange in honour of Dutch soccer these past two or so weeks….

… and now we are watching the Netherlands versus Ukraine soccer match. The score as I type this is 3-2, we’re nearing the end of the match.

It’s been lovely going to a museum, doing some sightseeing, eating nice food and having great summer weather to boot. It really feels like a holiday.

11 thoughts on “Today felt like a holiday

    1. We don’t go there that often but Amsterdam really is nice, especically on such a sunny day, and yes, the 3-2 final result was a good end to the day. 🙂

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    1. Not only US tourists… Lots of Asian groups as well and really people and groups from all over the world.
      Some 20 or so years ago they made an addition next to the house to allow for visitor streams and more museum space to tell Anne’s story, that’s where you enter now. I first visited when it smaller and more intimate, now it does feel a bit like an Anne Frank factory although the annex itself is still a good visit. I hope people take more away from it than just another fairground attraction…

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        1. It’s not accesible for the less mobile, no, that’s the nature of the building. I was more in awe the first time I went (in my late teens I think), maybe because it was more intimate and in my memory less crowded. They now have about 1.3 million visitors a year (!!). Going there last Sunday was good as it wasn’t too crowded either. They should make that the standard experience. I’m glad you had a good experience, it probably differs for everyone.

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          1. And I well admit I went as a tourist but the whole feeling especially once you climb those stairs really is quite emotional. The day I went in 2013 it wasn’t too crowded early in the day so maybe I was just lucky

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            1. Yes, I think going in early probably helps too. Glad it wasn’t so crowded for you.
              When I go to Amsterdam I feel a bit like a tourist as well as I don’t get there that often. 🙂

              Liked by 1 person

      1. Servetus

        I’ve never been (I’ve only been to Amsterdam once, for an art exhibit one summer — we drove in, parked, visited the museum, had a Dutch / Indonesian meal, walked through a red light district as ex-SO was kind of teasing me about being an American prude, and then left again late that night), so I can’t comment, just remembering things that friends and colleagues said. My impression is that it’s an experience that people put a lot of freight on. I had one good friend / colleague who practically had her diaries memorized, and she had a horrible time. The crowds really ruined it for her. Amsterdam was a weekend trip from an institution where many people in my field worked every summer, and after that she warned people to lower their expectations. I can understand as that’s how I felt about the Sistine Chapel. It was a really alienating experience. In the end I was glad I went, but the atmosphere was miserable.

        On the whole I’m a fan of the explanatory annex — even aside from the practical issues, it gets the institution’s story straight, and that’s a valuable thing in itself.

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        1. I don’t know if they had that when your friend went but now all info is only available on a private audio device that you get so there are no video screens broadcasting sound or anything, everything is more respectful and silent, which really helps. I have seen pictures of Anne’s small room filled with 10 or more visitors in it and it’s such a tiny room! Now when we went, we could actually be in the room virtually alone, which was good. They should make the 1.5 m distancing thing a standard.

          The kids found the scale models with furnishings very helpful:
          https://www.annefrank.org/en/museum/anne-frank-collection/40/scale-model-part-1/
          https://www.annefrank.org/en/museum/anne-frank-collection/41/scale-model-part-2/

          Explanatory annex – you mean the scientific edition that compares the original book, Anne’s own re-write of her diary and her first version?

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