We are in Amsterdam today and have just returned from a tour of the city with the primary sight seeing event being a visit to the house of Anne Frank. It is a wonderful museum and a testament to the memory of the short but eventful life of this young girl. Walking through the bookcase which hid the secret annex, and up the stairs to the rooms which were so well hidden until their ultimate betrayal, is a sobering and very touching moment. Even all the sparkling new builds of the modern exhibition does not detract from the dim and sad ambience of the rooms they occupied. Anne's bedroom wall is still plastered with her choice of photographs from magazines and newspapers, they hang as a reminder that teenaged girls of every and any era have role models, favourite film stars and a love of puppies. My own granddaughter's bedroom is full of pug dogs and pictures of pop stars totally unknown to me, and she is 12, just the age Anne was when she entered the hiding place. I am so glad I revisited this important memorial once more. Last time was 25 years ago when it really was just the building and nothing else. Now, the original diaries, photographs and 'bits and bobs' make the family seem so human. Otto Frank, Anne's father wished that the rooms themselves be left entirely as they were, and coldly unfurnished. They authorities cleared all furniture from the attic rooms after they were sent to a concentration camp. Bareness is much more heart rending. Mr Frank was right.
Amsterdam is such a small and beautiful city. One forgets just how compact it is, and how manageable to walk from each lovely sight to another. A 'Standard Dutch Double' Coffee was the requirement post attic visit - and it was a gorgeous rich and dark cup of rocket fuel ! Possibly even more powerful than Tim Peake's vehicle to the space station !
There was a Bach Christmas Oratorio happening this evening in the main cathedral, and number of fine orchestral concerts on offer throughout the city........the ship leaves at 5pm so I will have to go without !
I am sitting in close proximity to about 50 crew members in the Cruise Terminal dock, where the wifi is fast and free ! As a seasoned cruiser I know to follow the crew........where more than 10 young men and women gather there is wifi !
The most spacious cabin I have occupied in many a year of cruising !
A beautiful sentence from Anne Frank's diary.
What more could anyone want ?
1929 - 1945 RIP