Over the last few months Karen and i have really enjoyed city breaks so it was good to go back to Amsterdam and take in the sites, sounds and smells that this great city offers, and there are many of these experiences to be had here! The great thing about Amsterdam is that there are lots of great places that are hidden away and off the beaten track one of those things is the great bars that are dotted around the city, we spent many a happy hour over the week enjoying the numerous Trappist beers!
We had a great time in the Van Gogh museum, it was good to see some of the more unknown pieces he had produced and to learn a little more about his life. As well as the work from Van Gogh there were other artists on display which were equally as good.
We also visited The Jewish Historical Museum which told some of the many stories of Jewish life in Amsterdam throughout the years. This of course highlights the moving stories of the Second World War. As it tells the personal and more general stories of the war, it tells them in such a way as to make you see a sense of hope and optimism in the midst of the horrific events of the German occupation of Holland and of the 'final solution'.
At the start of the the Jewish museum there is a display about a Jewish artist called Meijer de Haan (1852-1895) and there was a picture that really struck me of three Rabbi's sat around a table debating some elements of the Torah, the first five books of the bible. What struck me about this picture was the realisation that theology and the bible are always in some ways up for debate and in our modern world it seems to me to be even more appropriate to have these kinds of discussions.
The weather wasn't the best over the week so we decided to go to the House of Bols, which tells the story of how it all began and you get a to smell the flavours and taste them as you go around as well as receiving a free cocktail at the end and a couple of shots! its was well worth it, we had some great fun.
In terms of holidays that's about it for us apart from Christmas. Its been a great year for getting away, and next year is also looking as exciting as we head off to see our pals in Cincinnati in June, which we are very excited about! So up until them its time to save some money!