She who leaves everything , including using a free day travel card , to the last minute can't be picky , which is why I ended up in Utrecht on the coldest , foggiest day of the week . Luckily , I'd put on layers of warm clothes ( though drew the line at the 1930's stomach warmer above, pattern available on request , since it looks rather itchy ) and could spend a happy half-hour doing what retired chaps /chapesses do everywhere and watch men dig holes .
Not having the level of expertise the other spectators had , it took me a while to work out how they'd got the heavy machinery down there . And then a large barge went past with a crane ... Duh !
Then it was time to thaw out and the Museum of Modern Aboriginal Art www.aamu.nl is just the place to do it . The permanent exhibition on the top floor was a mass of warm ochre , caramel and chocolate and the Education Room was full of local children's own wonderful interpretations of aboriginal paintings .
Actually , Utrecht is full of colour and paintings even on gloomy days .
It's satisfyingly full of little shops , odd corners and little alleyways and you can always find something new . I loved these paintings , stuck in a window of a silent , empty building
and definitely wanted this Azbekhistani rug to tuck over my knees on the journey home .
Talking of which , by this stage I was chilled to the bone and resisted this last temptation on the corner of a sidestreet