Monday, November 26, 2007

Amsterdam in handbag

This is a chilling morning, and I set off to the train station ("Bahnhof" in German, sounds "barn-hof"), for a 2D1N trip to Amsterdam, with a handbag. Yup, you are right, and I'm right, I'm not "backpacking", but "handbagging". I have a big handbag, big enough to put all my daily necessities inside, together with my wallet, camera, phone, travel book, etc. So now I'm ready for a trip!

Of course some preparation is needed. Train ticket was bought from, where as long as you book 3 days in advance, normally you could get at least 50% off on return ticket (i.e., you pay for single trip, and get the return ticket!). Hotel was booked via, a recommendation from a friend who using it quite a lot, which I also found very efficient. But hotels in Amsterdam is REALLY expensive! 70 Euro per night only get this kind of room:

Recently I've taken quite a lot of excercises on stairs. Last time in Himeji Castle, the stairs should definitely be military usage only. And this time the hotel in Amsterdam is basically just a canal house (when you say "canal house" in Amsterday, the first impression you should have should be long, narrow and steer stairs). And my room was in the attic, which means I climbed roughly 50 steps up from the street!

Upon arrival, I visited the Museum of Van Loon. It seems to have nothing related to the writer Dr. Van Loon, but it's still worthy visiting, for all its brilliant collections. It might be equivalent to some royal collections!

Early the next morning, I visited the Museum of Anne Frank, which really impressed me. I have never read the book "Diary of Anne Frank", but I've heard of this story. Visit to this museum still gave me quite a big shock, especially when I saw the movie stars' photos on the little girl's wall. I mean, who ever not did such things in high school? I think the thing that impressed people most, is that Anne is a girl that loves life so much, but in the end lost her life in a tragic war. Someone says that knowing Anne's story makes people perish the life, but once people think about there are countless people dying just like Anne, we might even lose the courage the live any more. That is true. After the visit, I took a short break in the museum's cafe, just to let myself come back to real life.

And then is the Dam Square. This is the centre of the city, and almost all most important buildings are clustered here. No doubt it is the focus of all cameras. The Royal Palace, church, National Monument, and so on. Just curious that this square is so small! Cannot just compare it with its counterpart in China, the Tian'anmen Square.

The trip back to Luneburg was a tragedy. German railway system fell into a mess after 6pm on Sunday. Every train was delayed. So I was delayed, and delayed, and delayed! Finally when I arrived in Luneburg, it was 10pm, 1 and half hour later in total! I swear that I will never take German trains continuously for more than 4 hours any more. I should take a plane actually.

Here are the album of this trip:

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