So yesterday morning started off pretty much the same as the previous day had finished … Not so well. We parked our van in a quiet road behind a farm – nice level section, next to a forest, security lighting and easy access to the Metro into town. Then the police came knocking.
9:00pm and we are fed, showered and settled down watching a TV series (taped, thank you Torrent!) when we hear a van pull up, with lights on our door. Knock, knock, who is there? Our friendly local police informing us that, yes, we may park there for 24 hours, but that does not permit sleeping. We were encouraged to relocate to a campsite 5 minutes drive away, which we did – to find everything closed. With some trepidation, and after witnessing another police car patrol the parking area, we pulled into a parking spot next to the campground, put up our blinds and went to sleep … troubled every time a car drove past or stopped. Having given the police our passport details we were a little edgy!
6:00am (Really, people get up at this time to go to work?) and we were up, moving the van to a 24hour parking area next to the Metro, as we were planning on spending the day in the Rijks Museum, and staying overnight with friends made in China (I think this is a trademark). This all went smoothly, apart from arriving waaay too early at our friends (Sorry Kelli!!)
So that’s how to do a Museum!!! My pitiful photographic portrayal of the Rijks Museum is really credit to the unbelievably good experience, which made me simply forget to record anything – not being a Millennial, you know? Self self click click (sorry kids). Firstly, the exhibitions are simply jaw dropping. To stand a foot from works like this – well! I think I get the Medieval reaction to the bones of martyrs and saints. We were our usual pathetic selves: The helpful folks at info indicate 90 minutes for the highlight tour (with brilliant audio/visual accompaniment for €5 – best money spent so far) – so 3 ½ hours later we were done with that, and had skipped 99% of the museum, and were still overwhelmed. Just enough time when the hour ‘we are closing’ notice came through to dash through the ship model and weapons section. Really should have brought sleeping bags and had A Night At The Museum.
Rounded off a great day with good food and drinks (missed you, Lanny) and unlimited showers when staying over with friends. Late morning start brought on by the unfortunate chemical reactions caused by red + white wine, but made better with coffee and hot croissants – really enjoying this Europe thing.
Currently out east of Amsterdam after weathering more brutally poor advice from our GPS. I’m sure the A1 around Amsterdam existed in 2015 (apparently the date of our GPS software!) so why we are warned of roundabouts, speed limits and traffic lights only the imps of hell, who were clearly responsible for the data card, would know. Anyway – parked at a delightful Cheese & Clog shop / manufactory / exhibition centre. Free parking somewhat compensated for €50 of cheese, liquorice and a cheese cutter that apparently also washes dishes, according to Niki. I’m so glad we have a zero souvenir policy!