Day Three: The Flower Auction at Alsmeer

There are not many things that can get me out of bed before six am, but the promise of a visit to the world’s largest flower auction did the job.  We headed out in the grey mist of a Dutch morning, drove for about thirty minutes, and entered the massive structure that houses the Flower auction.

Chances are pretty good that any flowers you may have bought, anywhere in the world, passed through this building.  Agents sit at computer terminals bidding on flowers from all over the world,  – roses from Isael, flowers from Kenya, plus all the Dutch flowers.

It is fascinating to see.  The floor of the auction house is alive with movement, as men on little motorized scooters move flowers from one place to another.  It seems like chaos, but somehow there is an order to things.

We were back to the boat in time for breakfast and then headed out with Lea for a walking tour of Leiden, another beautiful old city, and the birthplace of Rembrandt(Insert   here)

We were back to the boat for noon, and we sailed from Leiden to Delft.  We enjoyed a perfect lunch as the canals slipped by us – a quiche, with salads and accompanied by a St Veran and a Hautes-Cotes de Nuits.

The scenery is idyllic – cows, windmills, geese, sheep, green pastures and pretty houses.





We docked in mid-afternoon in Delft, and did a walking tour.  The Oude Kerke is where the painter Johannes Vermeer is buried – and you can still see the old city gate that was central to his painting, View of Delft.

In the Nieuwe Kerke, William of Orange is buried  in an ornate crypt, as are the members of the ruling Dutch family.

Oh, God, another beautiful dinner – cauliflower and gorgonzola soup, rack of lamb, a wedge of perfect camembert and Forme D’Amber, completed by a delicious tiramisu, served with Mercury Premier Cru and Chablis Premier Cru.

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