The Spring 2004 Trip to Europe

Part 2 - Southwestern Netherlands

Capital in the Hague
The Hague, or in Dutch den Haag, is the capital of the Netherlands.  This modest building, modestly protected, is where the parliament meets.
Queen's Palace in den Haag
Seen through a wrought iron fence, this is the palace normally occupied by the Queen Beatrix.  Netherlands has been a kingdom for a couple of centuries.  Kingdoms survive if the monarch doesn't act powerful.
Haag Skyline
The Hague is a combination of modern and ancient, like a lot of Dutch cities.  This skyline passes for modern.
Main street in Veere
Veere is a small town on an arm of the Neeltje Jans.  This body of water has been closed off so long that it is no longer very salty.  The town passes for charming, without being too cute.
Windmill in Veere
The windmills were used to keep the water off the land, after large portions of the Netherlands were recovered from the sea.
Surge Barrier protecting Neeltje Jans
Hydraulics remains a big piece of Dutch life.  Under winter storm conditions, the winds used to force water inland, flooding a lot of inhabited land.  This barrier is designed to keep the storm surges at sea and not in people's living rooms.  This type of thing replaces the windmills.
Harbor of Rotterdam
Rotterdam is one of world's greatest seaports, so these ships are no surprise.  The port, on the Maas River, was chartered in 1328.  Rotterdam is the gateway between the Rhine River and the rest of the world.
Port of Amsterdam
While there are regions along the Maas which are lined with petroleum storage tanks, there are other areas that offer spectacular modern architecture.  Here we see a bridge and a building by I. M. Pei.
Rotterdam from the Maas
The Rotterdam side of the port mixes modern and Victorian buildings.  Some of the buildings reflect astounding architecture, like the cubic apartments.  Being cubic is not so strange, but the cubes are sitting on their corners.
The town of Delft, known for centuries for their pottery, is some distance from the Maas, or any other river.  Near Rotterdam, a harbor for Delft was created.  Now a Rotterdam neighborhood, Delfshaven is the junction of the Delfshaven Canal and the greater port of Rotterdam.
Delfshaven and lee boards
Along the Delfshaven Canal, it is easy to see the details of local boat design.  Notice the lee boards.  With as much shallow water as there is in the Netherlands, it is nice to have keels that you can pull up.
Pilgrim's Church
Some of the Pilgrims made this church in Delfshaven their home congregation before returning to Plymouth for their departure to America in 1620.
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