Rijksmuseum, My First European Museum
Finally, another dream came true. Did you remember when I told you that how much I would like to visit Europe in my entire life? Now, It was not a dream anymore. I made it. And you know what? I felt like screaming due to happiness burst in my heart.
I chose Amsterdam as my first stop for some reasons. You know, as Indonesian, we have connection to Netherlands due to colonization in Indonesia for three hundred and fifty years. Ok, It was not really nice experience for my ancestors. But still, Dutch colonization gave significant impacts to the country in many aspects, regardless whether from bad or the right sides. In addition, getting visa to Netherlands was not as difficult as other Schengen countries. I just needed to get my passport to Netherlands consulate in Medan with other supporting documents, and ta daaah, I got my visa in 7 working days. Amsterdam, I’m coming.
I arrived on early April. Spring was there but weather was still freaking cold. I was freezing just a moment after steeping my feet out of airport, while waiting for train to bring me to the hostel where I lived in for the next five days. What I really like from my hostel was, it was purposed to female traveler only, so I could roam around with any clothes I like. A short brief about the hostel: I stayed with other five people in dormitory room, the toilet was clean, hot water was available in certain times, and informative and friendly receptionist at the front office who helped me to organize to buy some museum tickets that I would like to visit during my stay there.
As person who always dreams to see Europe in her entire life, I wondered for everything I saw along the way. I amazed the windmill I saw in rural side of Amsterdam (I wonder whether it was the only available windmills in the city. Nowadays, they are not so many), I wondered how Dutch loves their bike a lot, I was stunned by hundred canals I found in the city, and I was struggling to stand in the middle of strong wind. Even though knowing that there are hundred or even thousands Indonesian living in the country, I couldn’t hide my excitement anytime I saw Indonesian restaurant in the city. The photos below show how Amsterdam at a glance.
Rijksmuseum was the first European museum that I had visited. Thanks to Anne, the girl working in the hostel, for helping to buy the ticket online, prevented me to get stuck in long queue, in front of ticket centers. I know, I am not the art person. I mean, I couldn’t make any paintings. Cute handcraft is not my thing. I even had to ask my best friend to help in sketching of perspective drawing in my architecture classes. But, I love museum. I love staring the paintings, imagining myself getting into the scene, even though most of the time I had no idea who the painters are. I love observing an ancient bowls used by ancient people in the past. And I enjoyed when I observed people walking around in the museum itself. There is special sensation I cannot describe by words when I entered any museum. Yeah, traveling with the time machine can represent how my feeling was.
So, here I am, standing in the middle of the biggest museum in Netherlands. The museum was awesome, and of course I couldn’t see everything there in one day. But, I managed to see the famous ones, due to my time limitation. I saw some paintings of Van Gogh, Rembrandts, Johannes Vermeer, Claude Monet and even Raden Saleh, one of the most famous legendary Indonesian painters. As I said, Dutch lived in Indonesia for three hundred and fifty years, so finding some stuffs from Indonesia in Rijksmuseum is not something uncommon.