I have made some great friends on this trip. My roommate is Shelly, an elementary teacher and she is such a sweet woman! She has a couple of children and grandchildren, but can still hang with myself and another girl Beth. Beth is an absolute riot. She keeps trying to bribe our professor for an A. We keep daily journals that we will be turning in to Dr. C about our experience, and she told him she would put a couple of euros in hers so he would remember what a great student she was! She also keeps trying to get some of the drawing students to sketch in her book for her…way too funny!
Yesterday I went to THE most charming town called Haarlem. It is the image you envision when you think of Holland - elaborate medieval buildings, worn brick roads, a town square, musicians playing and a city canal with cute little gondolas. The scenery was breathtaking. We went to a natural history museum called the Teylers museum that has a collection of the largest fossils I have ever seen. Then we made it to a church that was built in 1380 for a mid-day organ concert. The church is a very honored church in that they have Frans Hals, the artist buried inside one of their tombs and both Mozart and Handel played the organ that was still in use. The church quartet was lovely and played music by Handel and Bach that just took you back many centuries. After that we went to the Frans Hals museum that has many of his significant works in a home he lived in for over 30 years. But the highlight of the day was walking around the food market with all of the townspeople where I ate the most delicious quiche I could ever imagine. I had no idea that heaven could be presented on a plate, but it was. I wished I could have bought 30 of them and brought them home!
Today we went to the Van Gogh museum. And don't say Van GO here in the Netherlands, it's Van Gogh, as in Van GOG (HHH) like you're spitting up a hair ball. As most of you know I love Van Gogh, always have and hope to marry him if David will let me (still working out the technicalities with both of them). It was the most awe inspiring experience. A feeling and respect so wonderful that I hope I never forget. He was so free with his work in light, color and texture. It must have been so freeing for him to stray away from the norm and create art so alive! The Bedroom was in restoration but I got to see The Potato Eaters and Wheatfield with Crows, two other favorites. On our way back to our group Beth and I stumbled upon a GLBT celebration rally. They were in Rembrandt square, dressed to the nines, accompanied by drummers as they chanted, "Gay is O.K." Of course Beth and I had to join in on the excitement and hop in the dance circle and show support for our new friends.
I've posted new pics, so make sure to check them out!