It was such a wonderful sight: the portrait of postman Joseph Roulin hanging next to that of his wife Madame Roulin with baby Marcelle.
Dutch painter Frans Hals (1582-1666) only became famous in the mid-nineteenth century. He was admired by artists like Vincent van Gogh for his free style that seemed almost impressionist.
The current exhibition Frans Hals and the Moderns in Haarlem shows dozens of works from well known painters that were all strongly influenced by Frans Hals.
One of the absolute highlights are these two paintings by Vincent van Gogh, hanging in perfect harmony side by side.
Postman Joseph Roulin (1888) is on loan from the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Madame Roulin and her Baby (1888) is on loan from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
I visited the Frans Hals Museum during the day when it was very busy. Late in the afternoon I returned. It was dark, almost closing time.
The attendant cheerfully let me in again. I walked through the largely deserted spaces until I reached the abandoned room with the Roulin family. There I sat peacefully, quiet, in front of these fantastic paintings.
Frans Hals and the Moderns