We were nearly late. In mid to late April the fields around Amsterdam are a riot of colour, filled with millions of blooming tulips. Shortly later the flowers are unceremoniously cut to preserve the bulb for later sale. No wonder this area is famous for its paintings of flowers, and also vanitas (a genre of artwork that creatively reminds the viewer that death awaits us all, even the tulips).
We traveled 30 km by public transit from Amsterdam to the mecca of tulip parks, the Keukenhof. We did not go to the Keukenhof, but instead rented a tandem bike outside the Keukenhof and spent the early afternoon on a questionably mapped 22 km ride that tours through tulip fields, a north sea beach, a few small towns, and a few cafes. It was delightful.
Upon returning to Amsterdam we headed to a unique commercial gallery that specializes in 3D printed art work. While the 3D printed artwork was interesting, the furniture made from old hardcover books was also very compelling. A pesto sandwich later found us on the high-speed train back home to Duisburg. Beauty, it seems, is never far away.