On the night of Tuesday 8th July we parked amongst the dunes alongside other motorhomes at Westende Bad just outside Nieuwpoort, on the Belgian coast. The next morning we awoke to gale force winds and driving sands so we ditched our planned tour of the Belgian and Dutch coast and headed inland to Brugge.
Having found a handy free parking spot next to the main canal, we donned warm trousers socks boots and waterproofs and cycled into the city centre. We enjoyed the Flemish architecture and cobbled streets.
and window shopped for Belgian Chocolates,
and some rusty old tools..
before the rain forced us in to a restaurant for a lunch of moules et frites and glass or two of white wine!
By Thursday lunchtime we reached Kinderdijk in the Netherlands, and finally found some sunshine and blue(ish) skies. So back in our shorts and T-shirts and in Dutch style got on our bikes to see the windmills and polders.
We found a nice quiet parking spot next to some allotments on the outskirts of Albasserdam; and watched happy Dutch men and women arriving with empty bags and buckets and leaving with them over flowing with harvested goodies.
Next, on to The Hague to visit our friend Judith – but first we made a detour to Albert Hein (the local supermarket)..
Essentials! for Heidi’s store cupboard – From left to right: Hagelslag (chocolate sprinkles to go on buttered bread), Chocoladepasta (choclate spread), Stroop wafels (biscuits), Stroop (the ‘syrup’ to go in the biscuits – or over pancakes!), Dropjes (liquorice), Fritessaus and Pindasaus (to make ‘Patat Flip’), Duvel (Belgian beer), etc.
We spent a few days catching up, reminiscing, buying Peter a new(ish) bike and cycling through the surrounding polders
More cycling in the dunes and, of course, eating ‘Pannekoeken met spek (bacon) en stroop’
Monday 14th July – we took a trip down memory lane. First stop, Voorschoten where Peter grew up
And then time for food:
And then on to Leiden via Leiderdorp (where Elaine lived and worked for three years)
Leiden (Elaine’s favourite bit of Holland ..apart from a certain someone she met there!)
And then there’s the bikes..
Holland summed up; Bikes and flowers.