Tuesday, April 24, 2012

The Great Church of Haarlem

 Mark and I woke up earlier today and decided to take the train into the nearby town of Haarlem.  We stopped at the coffee shop for lattes and sandwiches.  So darn good, and a wonderful way to start the day.

 We arrived and began strolling.  This looked to be a set of apartments.  Lovely, isn't it?

 We walked down this street, and discovered it held something amazing.

 A church that towered over the area. 

 When we went in to pay for our tour, Mark began to ask the two ladies sitting there, 'Do you take..." and when he got to there the one woman quipped "NO!".  And the two ladies laughed and we joined in.  They were adorable, and gave us suggestions of other things to do in Haarlem.  Meeting them will be one of the highlights of our trip.  Mark took the guide and read to me as we wandered.

 I can't begin to describe this organ.

 It is one of the most amazing things I've ever seen.  The guide states that in 1766 Mozart, who was 10 at the time, place the Christin Muller organ, and GF Handle also played it!  I was intranced after I heard that.

 The floors were large stones, and one of the other couples touring told us that the stones were all grave markers.  Some had names, but the majority of them only had numbers.  The couple told us that some of the graves were 5 people deep. 

 Somberging thought while walking.  Made you think and honor their memory.

 Here is a spot you can light a candle to honor someone.

 Mark bought a candle to honor his friend Pat, and I bought a candle to honor my Mother.  But we also thought about our two good friends, Roger and Shelia, who have had great losses this week, and we honored them as well.  I know that we have cherished our time here, realizing that life is short and precious.

 This is a painted wooden panel that is dated 1518 and served as a model for this church.

 This is the saying outside of the room with the candles.

 The pews were like stadium seating for those sitting in the back of the church.  I thought that was a good idea.

I could have shown so many pictures of so many beautiful items in this church.  I'm so happy I got the chance to see it for myself.