Thursday, January 6, 2011

I AMsterdam

I'm loving this city.

Even though Amsterdam is a bit cold right now (40 degrees F), there has been so much to take in:  big parks, thought-provoking museums, strange coffee shops and scantily clad women in windows.

The park nearest our hotel (Vondelpark) was glistening with frost and ice yesterday morning.  The sun felt good on our backs as we tried not to slip on the frozen ground.

One thing that appeals to me most in Amsterdam is the number of people riding bikes, especially the moms and dads who have little carts for transporting their children around the city.

At around 5 p.m., Ged and I went to the Anne Frank House situated on a canal.  It was strange for me to be going into a house that I had read about.  When I read the book as a pre-teen, I couldn't believe that people had to "go into hiding" and fear for their lives daily.

They were so close to making it out alive.  So close.

The image that hit me the hardest in this museum was the large portrait of Otto Frank (Anne's father) at the end of the exhibit.  It was taken in 1960 I believe, several years after the war, and the black-and-white print shows him leaning against a roof support in the attic looking at nothing.  There was nothing left after his family and friends had been discovered by the Germans and taken away to concentration and death camps.  You can feel this immense sensation of dejection.


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