Today is a trip to the countryside!

To Zaanse Schans, the windmill village, and a visit to a working windmill.

To Volendam and a visit to a cheese factory, and a boat trip to the island of Marken and to see a clog maker.

 
Cami really is in Amsterdam with us! She led the way through Dam Square as we walked to Lindbergh Travel to get our bus to the countryside.
 
 
Arriving at Zaanse Schans our guide Edgar points the way to the fourth windmill, where we will see a working sawmill.
 
It's a cloudy day, but windy, so the mill blades are all spinning. In the 1600's there were over 1,000 windmills in this area, but most were destroyed in the 1940's, either by war or by the villagers who suffered through extraordinarily hot summers from 1940 to 42, and brutally cold winters. They tore down the windmills to burn the wood to keep warm. Of the 30,000 windmills, about 1,000 remain, all reconstructed through cultural foundations.
 
These windmills are used to saw wood, to press peanuts for peanut oil, to make linseed oil for paint, to crush rocks for pigment to color paint, and most importantly, to pump water. The area is below sea level, and when it rains the water is pumped from the lowest level up and up again to a canal that flows to the sea.
 
Ole and Lena check out the windmills.
 
The top of the windmill can be made to swivel and tilt according to the direction of the wind. The blades are changed according to wind velocity.

 

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