This morning we headed out to visit our friends at Blaauw Kiln. We passed a construction site on the way there –
The box on rollers on the ladder looks cool.

Getting to Blaauw Kilns was an interesting expedition. Turns out there was a marathon scheduled for the morning. We thought we could just wander out into the street and get a cab out to Bornhout 8, Amsterdam. No such luck. No cars, and no cabs. A quick hike to the tram stop and a ride to Centraal Station got us to the central cab stand in Amsterdam. As is customary we got in the first cab in line and gave the address. No problem, the cab driver speaks English. However, he has no idea where Bornhout 8 is. It is not a tourist attraction. Google maps to the rescue – Nancy is a fantastic navigator in Amsterdam. 20 minutes later we are pulling into Bornhout 8 – a large complex of buildings with small manufacturing businesses and the city confiscated bicycle round up. On any given day there are on the order of 36,000 bicycles there. All with little red tags on the handle bar. Most of them end up being shipped out to Africa since most are never claimed. 

Guido kindly came out into the parking lot and flagged us down and we successfully made it to the birthplace of our kiln. We had a conversation about our glass kiln needs and an introduction to gradient heat test kilns.


Since no pictures were permitted in the Blaauw factory, Guido was able to take us to visit one the universities in Amsterdam where Blaauw kiln has sold a kiln for fused glass. It is a beautiful facility. The picture below is of Guido and a Blaauw kiln.
This one is a possibility for our glass studio –
After our kiln tour we headed out to lunch and carefully digested lunch over US politics. Interesting conversation hearing how the US is perceived in Europe. A few pictures of the area around a more modern section of Amsterdam:
We hoped a tram back to the old city and of course, there was plenty of time for yet another museum:
Here is a little mix of old and new Amsterdam:
I of course had to go to yet another museum: The Amsterdam Museum –
Many interesting things to discover there:
Sea Level relative to the city:
An original and incomplete celestial map for navigation. Many areas are totally unknown especially in the southern hemisphere:
This is the construction model that was built as an example for the carpenters to build the town hall in Amsterdam in 1655. Jacob van Campen designed it. The town hall was named the Eight Wonder of the World in about 1665. Ok Mr. Belvitch – work from these plans!
There are sand bars that block the entrance to the port of Amsterdam. When a ship returned home from a trading expedition it was heavily laden with goods and thus riding lower in the water. These Camels were built to raise the ship to float over the sandbars. Each side had a large caisson in it that was flooded. The camels were then strapped to the returning ship, and the caissons were pumped out to help raise the ship to safely float over the sandbar.
This is a modern parity of the civic guard portraits. The personification of Amsterdam was Rembrandt tattooed on her breast and a joint in her hand. Each of the faces is a prominent figure in Amsterdam’s history.
Enough for today – off for more beer and dinner.