GOOD-BYE BC, HELLO HOLLAND!

A gorgeous day in Vancouver….up up and away…..

to arrive in Amsterdam the next morning somewhat bleary eyed but excited to see our friends and our new bikes!

The weather is hot and humid with a light breeze but not too hot to go for a lovely bike ride thru the fields of purple heather to the town of Laren for a treat with our friends.  Best Ice Cream Ever!  Mango and dark chocolate…YUMMY! We enjoy our special treats in a nearby park with a cool pond and fountain…taking in the ambience of the Dutch culture…lots of outdoor cafes filled with smiling faces!  And cyclists everywhere!

Our new bicycles are soooo fantastic….light, easy to manoeuvre and such a smooth ride!

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Too Many Things!

The comforts of home seem to require a lot of “stuff”.  So much to organize!  The garden has been mostly ‘put away’…harvested, pickled, dried and the  freezer is full of berries.  The firewood is in the shed.  When we leave this world behind tomorrow for three months on our epic adventure, will I miss it?  There might be times where I dream of sitting in front of a blazing fire place with a hot mug of tea and a good book….but it will be a fleeting thought as I explore the ancient towns of Europe and try to live the less complicated life of a gypsy, happily hopping on my bike and taking in the scenery, architecture and culture of the roots of our ancestors.

We have been poring over the maps and speaking with some of our cyclist friends who have given us lots of valuable tips to consider.  Burgogne, France sounds enticing and apparently not as busy as Provence?  We will check it out.  It appears from Google Earth that the Rhone Valley is quite ‘industrial’ and busy with highways, railways (TGV), and boat traffic.  Which is something we really didn’t like when riding along the Rhine on our last trip.  So, we will go with open minds (and Pocket Earth!) to find some quiet villages along the back roads, rivers and canals from the Netherlands to France.

I have been learning more about the Pocket Earth App and now am able to download the data from the Vriends De Op De Fiets directly to our route maps in Netherlands!  We registered (for only 10€) with the Friends of the Cyclists who are folks who provide bed and breakfast for 19€ per person and there are hundreds of them throughout Netherlands.  I have also been transferring some of the ‘Burgogne by Bike’ routes into the PE App.

Here are some screen shots from the App…

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Our first stop for the night is Monnickendam…accommodation hi lighted in pink.
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The Burgundy Canal bicycle route.
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A close up of one of the sections.
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A close up of another town on our route between Holland and France, Echternach, Luxembourg,  along the Sauer River with Germany just across on the other side.

Am I ready to go?  YOU BET!

Our journey starts tomorrow afternoon….and we arrive in Amsterdam on Tuesday morning…a long haul, but worth it! And the first step to freedom from ‘stuff’!