Sunday, 10 July 2011

Amsterdam Leftovers Part 4: Art and more

I'm reaching the end of my leftover bits, so here's a bunch of unrelated material.

Part A: Art on the Street

Our crank didn't get too turned by the Dutch old school painters, but as you can tell by my extensive post on Escher, some Dutch art is quite compelling to me. On of the things I personally find interesting is the normal "art on the street" in which cities invest. In Amsterdam, my personal fave was the sea of iguanas in a small park.
Dozens of the little critters
There were about 50, 2' long brass iguanas on the walls, in the grass, and even on the sidewalk. Loved it.

Then there was the chameleon.
I think, in fact, he was for sale from the store he was parked in front of. He's not small, being about 3' long. Very cool.

Part B: Cleanliness is next to Godliness

The Dutch clean their cities. A lot. We saw them cleaning our street most days, including Sundays, from as early as 8 AM to as late as 8 PM. Sometimes a crew of 5-7 people with brooms and garbage bags would walk our street and pick up the trash. Street and sidewalk cleaners would come by almost daily.
Squirt it off the sidewalk and into the oncoming street sweeper 
There wasn't a city we were in in Holland in which we didn't see crews cleaning the place. Trash is put out on the street for collection, and they always spray cleaned on garbage collection day.

Directly across the canal from us was a glass recycling location. It took us a while to figure out it was here, and in fact, at the beginning of our trip, we couldn't see that they recycled in Amsterdam at all. But it was there, just hiding. This glass recycling station was merely a 12" square box sticking out of ground with round holes for bottle, and it wasn't really marked in any way. But we watched people use it, so we started to use it, too, not sure where the bottles went. Then we saw it being emptied by the coolest picker truck.
The picker grabs the drop slot revealing the underground box 
The glass drops into his truck
Part C: Wildlife and Critters

You know I like critters, especially wild ones. I really like Great Blue Herons. We have them, but they're not that common here. There's certainly lots of them in Holland. We saw them everywhere.
Fishing in Vondlepark
In Canmore, near where I live, we have a feral rabbit problem. People let domestic rabbits go, and they have taken over the town. Rabbits being rabbits, we have lots of rabbits, and now the town has to fix the problem. Well, someone in Amsterdam let a bunch of ring necked parakeets go in 1976, and now some 3,500 of them live in town, mostly in Vondelpark.
Very cute, but out of place
Repeated polls say the people of Amsterdam like them, so they stay. On the bright side, at least they don't attract coyotes like the rabbits do.

Traveling around Greece you see a LOT of cats. Amsterdam isn't cat mad, but I saw my fair share of them, especially in store windows.
One real one, asleep in the chair, among the fakes 
In a furniture store window
Hanging outside
Part D: When is a Mini not a Mini?

My first car was a 1976 Mini. KC owns a 2004 MINI. I know Minis well. A Mini is a small car where I live, but kinda normally sized in Holland. But when is a Mini not a Mini? When it's an SUV.
Somehow the antithesis of the word "Mini"
Here's hoping these never make it to Canada.

Part E: More Hoists In Action

I liked seeing a building hoist in action, so was happy when one across the street from me was used most of the day for moving.
On it's way up 
Nearly there 
Rotate and it's done 
In she goes
I also liked the hoists that were in use, but not for hoisting, like this one.
Three hanging ladies
Part F: Our Uninvited Guest

Halfway through our stay, we were joined by a houseguest. Here he is helping himself to some food.
Blurry, but you get the picture
He didn't bother us on his nightly visits, so we didn't bother him, though we did our best to discourage him.

Part G: What can you get in markets?

Turns out everything...
Wait for the joke...
...including the kitchen sink.

Part H: Strictly random

I can offer no comment on this. Its just something I never see at home.
Taking it for a walk, I assume
I'm nearly finished; I have but 2 Amsterdam posts left. Stay tuned, blog fan(s).

1 comment:

Edwin said...

Nice pictures that, together, make up and capture the essence of Amsterdam (not just these ones but the previously posted ones as well)

Are you sure the cat on the table is in a furniture store? It looks more like a lunchroom / small restaurant. (Salt and pepper on all tables..)