Museum Quarter and a Strange Experience

Amsterdam Travel Blog

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Jason is standing in front of the Van Gogh Museum, which is located in the Museum Quarter.

Today we didn't wake up until nearly eleven o'clock. I think our bodies are still very confused about what time it is. We decided to take the train back to Leidsplein to have breakfast at the American Cafe at the American Hotel. The food was far from delicious, but we felt as though we were required to eat a lot to justify the amount of money it cost us. Before we left the hotel, we used the bathrooms to steal some valuable toilet paper, since the campground we are staying at does not have any in their restrooms! After breakfast, we sauntered out to the Museum Quarter, which contains the Van Gogh Museum, the Stedelijk Museum (contemporary art), the Rijkmuseum (Dutch national art), and the Coster Diamonds Museum. The quarter consists of a large, central, grassy field and a manmade pond.

We are getting ready to enter the Torture Museum on Singel Street!
Around the grassy center are the museums. We first entered the Van Gogh Museum, which was a modern, 5-story gray building, that cost us 10 Euro to enter. After spending a little over an hour browsing through the galleries, we went to the gift shop where I bought the museum guide. I collect museum guides from all of the museums I have visited around the world.

        Following the Van Gogh Museum, Jason determined that he would like to see the Medieval Torture Museum, which is located on Singel Street. Unfortunately, we didn't know quite how to get there. Luckily, some of my favorite travel discoveries and memories occur when I am lost and wandering freely around a city. This proved to be true in this instance as well. We encountered a street with many shops called Kalverstraat, where we decided to return to later in the day. We also passed by the Bloemenmarkt, which is a huge flower district on Singel Street, which has numerous varieties of flowers, including tulips, which Holland is famous for.

       We finally made it to the Torture Musuem and weaved through the narrow, dimly lit hallways which contained displays of various methods of torture from Medeival Europe, including the notorious Guillotine from the Reign of Terror and Robespierre.

      After departing the museum, we embarked upon a search for an adapter for European outlets. We had an adapter, which we used to charge our digital camera, but it had been misplaced. Luckily, I was able to locate and purchase one at a store called Vroom en Dreesman on Kalverstraat.

     By then, we were both a bit tired and I wanted to take a shower before going out at night, so we decided to take the tram back to Camping Zeeburg. Upon returning to the camp, I had to shower, wash my hair, dry it, and straighten it, which is quite a process at a campground. Plus, I had to charge the camera, and the only outlets were in the bathroom, so I had to sit with my camera for about 45 minutes in the bathroom. Luckily, other than Jason, books are some of my closest friends! I'm not sure what Jason was doing to keep himself occupied in the tent all this time.

     When I returned to our cozy tent, Jason decided to sleep. Since I wasn't tired, I continued to read my book , impatiently waiting for him to wake so we could continue on with our adventures for the day. When he finally awoke from his slumber, we determined that it was too late in the evening to go to dinner at the Hardrock Cafe, so we decided to go to the campground's restaurant to grab a bite to eat. We each savored a warm cup of hot chocolate and devoured a hot dog before we decided that we still wanted to go out for the evening. It was nearly 10:15 at night, and we thought that the last bus that came to the campground left at midnight, so it didn't leave us much time to go out and about in the city.

     We ended up going to a place called Rookies, which is at Leidsplein, so we were able to take the tram there again. Afterwards, we ventured out to a local Burger King for some fries. On the way to the fast food joint, a short man grabbed my arm. I wasn't sure what he was doing, but then he looked back to see that Jason was with me, so he let go and ran off. It was a strange experience because I was never sure of what was going on in that moment. Luckily, nothing was stolen and no one was harmed.

      By the time we arrived at Camping Zeeburg, it was dark outside, so we found our flashlight, got ready for bed, and went to sleep.

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photo by: pearcetoyou