4th June: So our hosts and everyone else were correct. The route to Nijmegen from Leerdam was long, oh so very long, and hot!
One thing we’ve found over here is the distinct lack of facilities for cyclists. Cafes, Restaurants or even little rest stops are very few and far between. This is making the journey more difficult. I don’t know about anyone else, but I need a snack after every hour or so otherwise I hit a wall and my brain becomes completely puddled.
This has happened a few times and the road to Nijmegen was one of those times. We’d run out of supplies and every single village we ran through (read village as hamlet) had nothing. No shops, no cafes, just houses!
We’ve come to the theory that it’s because they all seem to have small holdings and allotment style gardens so the need for shops and cafes is minimal. But for tourists it’s lacking.
The ferry folks over here don’t work on certain days either, but they don’t have a sign to tell you that before you’ve trekked the extra mile and a half down the track to them, that sign is literally in front of the ferry. Signage is an issue for the route numbers too, but according to most folks we speak to even the Dutch get annoyed by this, so it’s not a tourist issue it’s a Holland issue.
Anyway, we eventually got to our accommodation to be met by our hosts for the day. The man of the house was blatantly an Anglophile and was a bit of an arrogant twat to be honest. He tried to psycho-analyse us and belittled our grasp of the English language, we were so pleased to be going out for dinner and not staying in!
The restaurant up the road was lovely. The food over here (when we can find it) has been amazing, super tasty and all super filling.
We were told, when we got back, we’d have a 8am breakfast 🤦🏼♀️
5th June: I was physically and mentally exhausted but as he was such an arse we thought that might mean a quick escape, but no, he kept us there until around 10am and attempted to discuss politics etc with us, HUGE FAIL.
Eventually we got out and headed to the cycle museum in Nijmegen. Cue meltdown number one of the holiday.
If you know me well you’ll know I do NOT cope well in cities. Well Nijmegen is a city, and a confusing one at that. I was so frustrated, tired, angry, annoyed and a bit frightened by the time we found our way to the museum that I shouted at Ma Robbo and wanted to go home.
Cities and a lack of route numbers does not for a good journey make!!
The cycle museum though was reet canny, they had a handy English tour book and a range of bikes from the original walking bikes, to the big wheels and penny farthings all the way to the first Dunlop/Rovers. I was surprised at how many of the bikes were designed or developed by the British.
From the museum we headed off on the predicted 17 mile journey… it wasn’t quite as hot but there was a promise of 22 degrees later in the day. So we figured as it was such a short journey we could take our time and take it easy as I was drained from the day before and Mam’s knee was playing up.
The journey hit around midday and we suddenly got hungry. With no food anywhere to be seen! We had to use google to find something to eat and ended up in a little village chippy, who seemed surprised to have two strange English women in his shop. We had some chips and then headed on our merrier way.
After another ferry that wasn’t working, managing to find a supermarket to stock up on snacks, and find a ferry that was running we eventually made it to our accommodation. Which is a cute little bungalow in what feels like Centre parcs.
I crashed out immediately after getting back from dinner around 8pm and am writing this at 7:30 so I think I may finally be all slept out.
Today (6th June) we head to Amersfoort for a history lesson at the Concentration Camp.