Amsterdam, Netherlands

Here’s a video of the city:

REFERENCES: Google Earth and Arts & Cultures

The Van Gogh Museum houses the largest collection of artworks by Vincent van Gogh (1853-1890) in the world. The permanent collection includes over 200 paintings by Vincent van Gogh, 500 drawings and more than 750 letters. The museum also presents exhibitions on various subjects from 19th-century art history.

Field of Flowers near Arles:
When Vincent went to live in Arles in the south of France in 1888, he had a need for reading humour and satire. He read ‘Tartarin de Tarascon’ by Alphonse Daudet (1887). The book deals with an entertaining caricature of the Southern Frenchman. In this farce, Vincent could identify with life in southern France. Its humour impressed him. Vincent believed that little happened in his own era that was truly uplifting and that art was the only thing that could give one any consolation.

Pic on leftYellow House: Two years after arriving in Paris, Vincent moved to the Yellow House in Arles in the South of France. After so many failed relationships, at the age of 35, Vincent eventually came to accept his fate. His unpredictable, maladjusted and unstable personality proved entirely unsuitable when it came to matters of the heart.

Maurice de Valminck’s The Seine at Nanterre

view of Paris
Claude Monet’s windmills near Zaandam
hill of Montmartre with stone quarry
Paul Gauguin’s Mango Trees in Martinique
Van Gogh’s Bank of Seine

Camille Pissaro’s Route de Versailles, Rocquenfort
Claude Monet’s Japanese Bridge

Hiroshige’s Two women on a boat, right sheet of the triptych ‘Evening Cool and Fireworks at Ryōgoku in the Eastern Capital’
Hiroshige’s Mount Fuji to the left of the Tokaido

Pics from left to right: Utagawa Kunisada’s Tokiwa Gozen, the Concubine of the Captain of the Imperial Guard Yoshitomo & Autumn moon over Miho

Courtesan: after Eisen
Butterflies and Poppies
la corniche near Monaco
Henri Riviere’s The Barges

Lastly, this is Anne Frank’s house. The museum is quite riveting. The house is where Anne Frank hid with her family and their friends, the van Pels family, and a dentist, Dr. Fritz Pfeffer during World War II until they were captured by the Nazis. Two Dutch citizens, Miep Gies and Victor Kugler hid the Franks and their friends in an attic apartment behind Otto Frank’s business. Tragically, Otto Frank was the only one who survived the Holocaust. He passed away in 1980. Kugler died in 1989, and Miep passed away in 2010.

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This is the bookcase that concealed the entrance to the Secret Annex.

This is where the people in hiding cooked and ate together, and where they listened to the radio. At night, the room was converted into the bedroom of Mr. and Mrs. Van Pels.

On November 8, 1942, Peter celebrated his sixteenth birthday in the hiding place. In her diary, Anne listed the presents he had received: a lighter, a mirror, a shaver, a shaving brush, a tie, some candy, and a Stock exchange game from the office staff.

Anne mentioned the Stock Exchange game once more, when they played the game for two consecutive afternoons at Easter 1944. (game is in center of picture)

After the people in hiding were arrested, the Stock Exchange game was left behind in the hiding place; the original game board has been preserved. The game revolves around trading in equities, such as rubber, oil, sugar, and tobacco. The game board shows a map of the then Dutch East Indies. Peter dreamed of going there after the war to work on a plantation. On the table, there was frequent laughter, and Jewish holidays and birthdays were a source of cheerfulness. The constant fear of discovery generator tension, and the difference in character caused friction.

Otto, Edith and Margot Frank’s room

During the daytime, this was the living room of the Frank family; at night, it was converted into the bedroom of Otto, Edith and Margot. When everyone had to be quiet, Otto would read Charlies Dickens’ books and kept a dictionary in hand to improve his English. Otto decided to read Anne the works of classical German writers such as Goethe and Schiller. Edith gave Anne the prayer book, with prayers in German and Hebrew. This did not go down well. After the Allied landings on June 6, 1944, Otto kept track of their progress by sticking pins in this small map of Normandy.

Room of Anne Frank and Fritz Pfeffer

Anne shared a room with Pfeffer which caused tensions. They fought over a writing desk. Things calmed down when she asked her father to intervene. Pfeffer reluctantly gave in. The desk was where Anne wrote in her diary.To brighten things up, she pasted pictures of landscapes, movie stars, members of the Royal family, and art on the walls. To beat boredom from not using electricity, she used a pair of binoculars to spy on the neighbors.

Peter van Pels’ room

At first, Anne felt that Peter was thick and boring, but later on, the two fell in love. Anne had her first kiss in his room. The stairs lead to the attic of the Secret Annex. The van Pels tried to sell Peter’s bike when they ran out of money, but no one bought it. He never biked again.


The people in hiding used the room mainly for storage purposes. There was a pantry, a barrel of potatoes, there were bags of beans, and laundry drying on the clothes lines. The attic was not suitable for sleeping. It was not insulated, and rats sometimes roamed the loft. Fortunately, the cats, like Peter’s cat Mouschi, kept the problem somewhat under control. To prevent discovery, the people in hiding kept away from windows that had not been blacked out. The attic window was the exception, and it gave Anne a chance to look outside.

Rijksmuseum, a Dutch national museum:

Grades: Both A’s

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