“We love puzzling with us in the family” according to Anne-Miek van Houtum. “And especially on the puzzles of Jan van Haasteren, who are so nice!” That does find more people and so there are Dutch championships jigsaw puzzles organized where the participating teams such a Jan van Haasteren puzzle as the lightning to get together. There are 4 men in such a team so you can get in each other’s way. A strategy would therefore be convenient.
“Well, we empty the box and we just start”, laughs Anne-Miek. “We sort colors and then someone starts at the edges, for example, and we often change seats because you get a different view of the puzzle.” The winning time last year meant that every four seconds a puzzle piece had been laid out properly. That may sound like something to do, but remember: you have to do 1000 pieces with 8 hands at once!
Anne-Miek participated for the first time last year. “We did not win, but we did improve our personal record,” she says. “I’m sure that if two would be puzzling and sorting two, we could go faster, but that’s pretty boring for those two sorters! do especially for fun, but there are teams that play REALLY to win! ”
There are enough teams with it to say the least. Last year 246! Of those, 28 went to the final. The expectation is that more people will come this year so that eventually 35 to 40 teams are in the final. But first there are the preliminaries. Anne-Miek and her team BestGeHaast participate in Reek in October. “It is nice, during those preliminaries,” she says. “We start singing the national anthem and then we all dive together on the packed puzzle!”
The puzzles of Van Haasteren are now world famous. They are characterized by cheerful colors and elements that you always see coming back. For example the shark fin, the self portrait of Jan, Sinterklaas and also a denture. Meanwhile, they are gathered enthusiastically. The vintage models are popular but also the models that are being re-released. Anne-Miek’s son has about 400 of those puzzles and a separate room in his apartment to store them!