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Manufacturing the Dutch Way

Last night I returned from my quest overseas part of which was spent in the Netherlands. A 48 hr whirlwind visit seeing friends in Rotterdam, the town of Delft, and a dawn breaking morning treck to Naaldwijk's floral epicenter. Finishing off the day in Leiden home of Rembrandt for a gouda & white asparagus pancake lunch washed down with a most delicious wieckse witte beer.

The town of Delft, home of Johannes Vermeer, the oldest Dutch University and where the famed ceramics have remained in production since 1560. Since I hold intrigue for Mary II of England and her amassed collecting practices seen on the outskirts of London at Hampton Court Palace it was only fitting to see where Queen Mary's obsession took shape. 

This hand painted Little Tear Bottle owes its name and form to the days when sailor men were far away at sea and when saying goodbye the women left behind wept. The bottleneck was placed in the corner of the eye and tears could be captured, then carried on voyages as proof of ones sympathy. Let's just say purchasing this precious little token was not cheap, but what of any great importance is. 

Watching these artisans produce tin glazed pottery when so many knockoffs exist through image transfers; I have shaken the hand of the maker of my vase, it is signed, dated and unquestionably authentic. 

"There are no shortcuts to any place worth going," says a sign in my friend Michael Brenner's office. That ran true for our excursion to the flower auction. Overslept with thrown on clothes my travel companion Manuela Raurich Mateluna, a dancer from Barcelona and I battled through windy rain on foot to what seemed an impossibly difficult center to find outside of Rotterdam.  

 But was it ever worth going....

Flower Auction Holland from Lea Ann Willett on Vimeo.


With a multitude of photographs and pamphlets my head is still swimming taking in just this portion of the trip, which in person I will gladly divulge. More photos are to be posted from the myriad of markets I have been. Until then I continue to dream walk through my ancestry and my furthered passion for the Dutch.  

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Reader Comments (1)

Looks like you had an amazing trip! I was just watching something on tv about the huge flower auction and there YOU ARE! WOW. Can I just call you the international flower power woman? xo

July 16, 2011 | Unregistered Commenterapril

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