Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Zandvoort & Around

Vogelmeer, Kennermerland National Park
Afternoon at Zandvoort beach: relaxation on the sand, just the slightest trace of a cool breeze, the water calm and not too cold with gentle waves. And the ride that followed was just great: the 'Door bos en duin met de IJmondroute', i.e. 'through woods and dunes by the mouth of the IJ,' though I left out the IJ bit at the top. Only trouble is it's fairly hilly and the OV-Fiets (share bike) isn't really up to the task. I had to do a lot of stand-up climbing, but also downhill zooming.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Almere and the Green Cathedral

Woontoren Silverline
After much starting and stopping I finally decide to go to Almere to start gathering info for an article. It's a bit windy and cool but the clouds seem to be drifting past for occasional flashes of sun. On the Sprinter (commuter train) it's an ethnic melange: many blacks as well as Nordic types and burqas. As elsewhere, it's all about la familia. 

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Spaarnwoude breakdown

When I can't decide where to go, I may head for a town that takes no longer than an hour to get to by train from Amsterdam -- Utrecht, Haarlem, Den Haag, Alkmaar, Den Bosch, Hilversum, etc. From there I just strike off in whatever direction seems most interesting and ride for as long as I feel like it. Since every town in the Netherlands is surrounded by pretty countryside laced with bicycle paths, all connected by well-signed fietspad routes, this strategy is entirely viable. If I don't feel like paying the €6 fee to put my bike on the train I can just rent an OV-Fiets at the station of each town.

Thursday, June 15, 2017

North Sea coast -> Amsterdam

LF-1 south of Castricum
Carefree couples stroll the beach. A speckled brown gull hopes for a scrap of my sandwich, warding off other beggars, occasionally letting out a screech. Today it's cool, breezy. A distinct change of seasons mood. This is Wijk aan Zee.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Twente 3.4: Winterswijk West

Now a restful moment on the way to kp 48. This route, west of Aalten, skirts the Boven Slinge for quite a ways, almost to the outskirts of Doetinchem. The Boven Slinge is a narrow canal with green banks, flanked by trees with a sand & pebble sliver of a trail alongside. Quite still and peaceful, just a distant barking. I'm glad that it goes on like this for miles, practically no people on this pristine path on a Tuesday afternoon. I've got nowhere to be this evening so may take my time. Anyway, I'm likely to arrive in Doetinchem in de spits (during rush hour), so won't be able to put my bike on the train.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Twente 3.3: Enschede


Change of plans: an extra day in Enschede. Good move as it's raining and Enschede is an interesting place: the capital of the republic of Twente. People are noticeably friendlier here. They seem to enjoy themselves.