Thursday, August 18, 2011

Train Travel Done Right

Woohoo, we are in Paris!  After a fantastic and educational time in Amsterdam yesterday (eating croissants, renting bikes, visiting the Dutch Resistance Museum, and the Anne Frank House) we got up early this morning and headed to Paris via the Thalys train.  And oh my, was it a lovely train ride!  Train travel is just not something we've got down in the US.  This morning we got a full breakfast, coffee & tea, complimentary newspapers, a second beverage service, a passed plate of mini sandwiches and pastries - and did I mention it was only a 3 hour and 15 minute train ride and there was beautiful scenery?  We arrived at 11:30 AM and made our way to the little studio apartment we rented in the 1st Arrondissement.  Of course since there is so much to do here, we hit the ground running.  I will post Paris photos over the next few days, but for now some shots from Amsterdam yesterday.

Vacation lie I will tell myself: I can eat unlimited croissants if they are whole wheat and seeded.

Despite generally being very nervous on bikes in big cities, I LOVED riding in Amsterdam where cyclists always have the right of way and there are tons of designated bike lanes.  Also, I loved seeing basically the entire population out and about on their bikes.

Our two museum stops were fascinating and moving.  We walked right into the Resistance Museum late in the day and only wish we could have spent more time there.  The wait for the Anne Frank House was 90 minutes, but once inside we were completely captivated.  The Secret Annex is preserved and you can walk through the entire attic space.  I was particularly touched my the small special exhibit on Anne's older sister Margot, about whom much less is known, but who seemed like an amazing young woman. I want to do a re-read of The Diary of Anne Frank now that I can contextualize the place from which she was writing.
Photos by Oh MG.

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