Utrecht, Part 2

After climbing the Domtoren (Dom Tower), we went to the building next to the church, Museum Speelklok. Speelklok literally means musical clock, but the museum has much more than clocks, it has many interesting automatic musical instruments as well.

The museum labelled itself as “the most cheerful museum in the Netherlands”. At first I thought it was just an exaggeration, but later I found that the amusing exhibition was indeed cheerful, you cant’t help to evade smiling everytime you hear the music and attraction of the collection.

I think these two are the best small automatons — first one is the acrobat automaton:

And second is Rabbit in a cabbage (Paris, circa 1900), one of the cutest musical boxes in the museum. Watch the rabbit comes out and nibbles at the cabbage!

The museum has an interesting array of collection, ranging from the 15th century until 20th century. In the big orchestrion section, I found the Hupfeld Phonoliszt Violina (Leipzig, circa 1910) interesting. It has a piano with a cupola on top with three violins in it. It was played at the World Exhibition in Brussels, and dubbed as the eighth wonder of the world.

We joined a guided tour that was available every hour. The guide explained the history thoroughly, in Dutch and then in English. Near the end of the tour, she played the German belly organ, and then holding the lyrics of the song, asked the visitors to sing along.

In a very cheerful mood (just like the other visitors, perhaps), we left the museum to go to Dinnia and Sam’s home. I got a ride on Sam’s bicycle and surprisingly survived the 15-minutes bumpy back-breaking ride, hahaha. It must be really tough for Sam to pedal the bike with an extra 57 kg baggage.

Their home was so nice and the best thing is Sam cooked for us! The biryani and daal was so superb I took the liberty to add more and more to my plate.. I left their lovely home at around 9pm, smiling happily.

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