Going out again, August 2022
Dick knows me well enough to know that it’s better not to stay at home. Then I get nervous. I’ve been home for a week now after my mini-pilgrimage and already packed my backpack three times. So, we decide to go out for another two weeks with our motorhome. I quickly make a route to France and when Dick has contacted Cor, it is also certain that we will visit them in Liart on our way back. It may also be necessary to make some arrangements for the trip that Dick and Cor are going to make.
After celebrating Henk’s birthday with the family on July 29th and a last scuba-dive in the Oosterschelde, I put everything I want to take in the RV in our living room on Sunday afternoon and on Monday, August 1st, around noon, Dick leaves home to get our RV out of the storage. He has been gone for a while when I discover that he has forgotten the motorhome keys, so I quickly get into the car and can pick him up a little later at the bus stop in front of our car garage, after which I drop him off at the metro station and drive back home.
At 2 pm Dick is back with our Frankia and I can load the things inside that have to go with us. Meanwhile, Dick put the bikes inside and fills our water tank. At 3.30 pm we can lock our house and drive away. It is still vacation time in the Netherlands so, even though we are driving on one of the busiest roads in our country, we can continue without a traffic jam to Nuenen.
There is only one campervan parked and we have enough space to spend the night. This parking lot next to the scouting site is not special, but we know that there is always a place to park. The temperature has now risen to 75 degrees Fahrenheit and as soon as we are parked, we open all our windows wide. Later in the week this temperature turns out to be cool, then a temperature of 90 degrees and more is normal. And you must know that we don’t have airco in our Frankia. It is now 5 pm and we think we did enough, so we drink a glass of wine before I start cooking. The simple meal with Greek seasoned potatoes and small sausages (chipolatas) tastes good. In the evening we watch the news, but it doesn’t get very late because by 9 pm I am already in bed and fall asleep quickly. Dick follows a little later.
Tuesday morning, we wake up at 7 am by the sound of roaring engines driving back and forth past the motorhome. This place is popular with motorcycle driving schools, but actually they always start at 8 am. Now in high summer they apparently deviate from this time. Oh well, it’s okay because now we’re leaving early. The route through Germany is dead quiet and consists for the most part of autobahn, which means that we arrive in Hillesheim in the Vulcan Eifel at the end of the morning. It is really noticeable that we are in a volcanic area because the closer we get to our destination, the hillier it gets. It is dead quiet on the market in the center and soon we discover the parking space where motorhomes can be parked and park our Frankia there between the regular cars. Of course, we drink a cup of coffee and then, it is now noon and therefore the hottest part of the day, we walk into the town. It is really quiet everywhere and after paying for the parking at the tourist information, we walk into the hills to look for some geocaches.
It is warm, around 83 degrees, but on top of the mountain there is a cooling wind so we are not bothered by the fact that there are no shadow spots in the far distance. We do have to climb steeply to get to the plateau. But we enjoy ourselves, find some geocaches and have a great view over the valley. After 7 miles we are back in town. Dick walked enough today but I want to take a look around this, unexpectedly nice, old town. It is dominated by the remains of a castle and many of the walls and towers are still standing.
It’s special to walk along this city wall all alone. When I see an outdoor shop, I ask if they also sell point protectors for my walking sticks and if that turns out to be the case, I quickly walk back to the Frankia to get my walking-sticks. After my mini-pilgrimage, the rubber protectors were completely worn out and the spare protectors that I had received from Nel during the walk, now also shows deep signs of wear. Fortunately, the rubber protectors seem to fit so that during my big trip I no longer have to listen to the “click clack” of uncapped walking-sticks. Finally, I am back at the Frankia. We drink some soda’s and then it’s time to leave.
Dick has discovered a Thai restaurant. It’s nearby and with good reviews, so we walk there at 7 pm. We are lucky, there is still a table available and soon we enjoy our starter followed by Pad Thai and green curry with chicken. What a delicious food. It is still very warm and the thermometer shows 86 degrees. With a full stomach, we really had too much food, we slowly walk back to the motorhome and search for some geocaches. Again, we enjoy the city wall, which is quite impressive from the outside. It cools down very slowly inside the motorhome, so during the night we keep all our windows wide open. It feels a bit cooler towards the morning (64 degrees) and then it is nice to have a blanket covering our sheet.
Wednesday morning, August 3rd, we don’t get up until 8 am. Despite the fact that we are parked in the center it is very quiet. As soon as we have showered and opened the door, the heat falls on us. It is already 70 degrees and it promises to be even warmer today.
After having a good breakfast and washing our dishes, we dump our gray and black water (my job) while Dick fills the motorhome with clean water and then we drive off. Soon we stop at the Réwé supermarket to return our empty bottles (German bottles can only be returned in Germany) and then we continue our way. Because we can’t buy my beloved frühstücksaft (breakfast fruit juice) this town, Dick also parks in the center of Trier for a while, but unfortunately the kind of juice I want to have is not available there either, so we drive straight through the old city of Trier where the beautiful old gate smiles at us. One day we should definitely stay longer here. The road follows the river Saar and is quiet. Only the huge campgrounds along the river are overcrowded.
When we arrive in Mettlach it is already 88 degrees and quite warm. There is really no one in this sun-drenched parking lot and we quickly park the camper along a row of trees. We’ll be able to sit down there in the afternoon. But not now because, just like every day, we go out for a walk in the heat of the day. First to the center of town where we pay for the parking at the tourist information and then we walk to the other side of the river to look for the geocache that we couldn’t find last time.
In the meantime, the cache owner has performed maintenance and so it is now easy to find this cache. Of course, we can’t resist the terrace of an ice cream shop in the center of Mettlach and soon we are both sitting at a huge ice cream, filled with fruit, that tastes delicious.
While Dick slowly walks home, with yesterday’s 5 miles with steep climbs and today’s 4 miles, he thinks he has walked more than enough. But I continue to the Aldi, a supermarket located outside of town. Not that I need anything there, but it’s good to walk still a bit, even in the heat. And so, with now 95 degrees, I walk a total of 6 miles and I manage to do this. I’m glad I’m back at the Frankia around 4.30 pm, where we drink a non-alcoholic beer. And then, yes again, I walk to the shop next to our parking lot. I buy a nice bag in which my iPad mini fits well and also find shampoo in solid form as if it is soap. Ideal of course to take with me on my trip. You only have to let it foam in your hands and massage through your hair and your hair is washed. What an invention, I buy that. Dick has now lowered our awning and despite the heat we sit comfortably under it, but it takes until late in the evening before it cools down a bit. I’m glad that a great part of the evening we will have a seat on the terrace of the Abtei Brau next door.
At 7 pm we walk to the restaurant. There is still enough space to sit down. You notice the difference with weekend days, now it’s really quiet. We chat with some other guests, drink the good draft beer, enjoy the warm summer evening and of course the excellent food.
It is not till 9 pm that we walk back, only 100 yards. There we sit some time outside and talk to each other before going to bed. Again, all windows are wide open and again it is warm until very late in the evening. But nevertheless, we sleep well. I now know that you don’t really sleep well when it’s cold.
Thursday, August 4th, we wake up around 8 am and as the Netto supermarket is already open, I buy fresh bread rolls for our breakfast. After filling up with water, which has to be done with the watering can and therefore takes some time, we drive away. On top of the cliff, we stop at a Réwé supermarket where I actually manage to buy a few bottles of frühstücksaft. Great, because this was the last place in Germany where that was still possible. Not much later we cross the river Moselle and arrive in Luxembourg. Although the fuel prices in Germany are a lot lower than in the Netherlands, in Luxembourg the fuel is still 15 cents cheaper so we fill up our fuel tanks and then continue our way through the vineyards of Luxembourg. Not for very long because again a national border appears and we enter into France. The road is still not busy and at noon we enter the marina grounds in Pont á Mouson. Here is a parking lot in the full sun.
It’s lunchtime so everything is closed and we cannot pay. The office reopens at 2 pm so we take a look around. Even though we stay in a beautiful place along the river, we cannot enter the water here to cool down (It’s a harbor and therefore forbidden to swim) and meanwhile the temperature rises to 104 degrees. So, after 1.5 hours we leave this place and drive a little further south to the town of Toul.
We stayed here years ago and I don’t remember much about it, but there is a shady spot available. Unfortunately, we have to wait a while before we can park the Frankia there because there is an ambulance having a picnic.
However, after half an hour, lunchtime is over and the ambulance leaves and we can park in the shade of the large old trees. It is now 97 degrees, too hot to walk around, so we grab our chairs and sit in the grass next to the motorhome. With a soda because we can’t get enough of drinks at this moment.
At 3 pm the sky is covered by clouds and it seems to cool down a bit. But looks can be deceiving, it is still about 95 degrees, but fortunately a few streets in the town are in the shade.
In the cathedral and the adjacent cloisters, it is wonderfully cool and we wander around there for some time. End of the afternoon we walk back to the motorhome in the still burning sun.
Fortunately, the shadow of the trees is waiting there and we can recover in that slightly cooler environment. We still keep our hiking boots on because soon we will walk back to town to have dinner.
Opposite the Turkish restaurant where we used to get food (now closed for 6 weeks due to holidays), we found a small French restaurant that looks cozy.
So, we walk there at 7 pm and because there is a table available on the terrace, we have a seat and a little later, a nice glass of wine. The street is now in the shade and there is a strong wind blowing, but it is still 73 degrees, so it is nice outside.
We both order a burger that is served with homemade chips and tastes delicious. We do not regret choosing this restaurant.
On the way back we see two animals in the small streams along the city wall. They look like rats but a French woman says they are not rats but they arrived here from Canada. She can’t give me the name but when we see a poster later in the week with the same animals, it turns out to be Beavers. These are clearly baby’s because by far they are not a yard long and they do not weigh 44 pounds. We look at them for a long time and thanks to the fact that my small camera has a 25 x zoom, I manage to take a picture before they suddenly disappear. At home we sit outside for a long time until it gets really dark. It stays very hot during the night and cools badly. For the first time this holiday we are really late in bed. Just as we fall asleep, it starts to thunder and the wind blows so hard that we wake up. Dick closes the roof hatches and sets the windows in ventilation position. Not long after it starts to rain hard. Now it cools down and we fall into a deep sleep.
On Friday morning we don’t wake up until 8.30 am. That’s what happens when you’re haunting so late at night. It has cooled down quite a bit and the thermometer show only 71 degrees. For the first time in weeks the sky is cloudy. When we fill up with water, our hose connection breaks and only with great difficulty Dick manage to make another connection on the hose. The diameter of this hose is many times smaller than the connecting pieces, so it will not fit. But duct tape and scalding hot water allows a makeshift repair so we can continue filling the water tank. Unfortunately, we can’t leave when the water tank is full because at the end of the narrow road a garbage truck has problems and blocks everything. But after 20 minutes everything is resolved and we can continue our way.
It is now 11.30 am. Fortunately we don’t have to drive that far and we arrive in Remiremont before noon. There is a large parking lot for motorhomes near the train-station and there is still plenty of space at this time of the day. So, we park the Frankia in a place where two of them fit (never seen so much space in France) and drink some coffee.
Even though the temperature is fortunately not so high anymore, it is only 77 degrees, Dick doesn’t like going out for a walk in the hottest part of the day, so I walk alone to the supermarket that should be further away. There is no end to the road but finally I find the market and after looking around inside (I don’t dare to buy anything because I don’t have a cooling bag with me) I walk back via another way. Although this road is considerably shorter, it is not successful as I have to walk over a narrow ridge along a busy road and also have to descend a steep slope to get back on the path home. No, then the way there was a lot better, even if it was twice as long to walk.
After we have had a cup of coffee, we walk together into the town of Remiremont. It is not very special but there is an old church with a beautiful crypt and the palaces of the abbess who lived here, are impressive. Because we don’t actually come across any suitable restaurants, we buy some lettuce and meat. Now we don’t have to go out tonight and can stay comfortably at the motorhome. Due to the dropped temperature, it is now 83 degrees, it is pleasant to sit outside and we stay outside until 7.30 pm. Inside we have dinner (lettuce with bread and meat) because in the meantime the wind started to blow and makes sitting outside very unpleasant. Although I don’t understand why the French always leave in the evening, that also happens in this parking lot and soon almost all places are empty.
We now have an undisturbed view of the railway and can see how impressive the TGV is (Train Grande Vitesse, train with high speed) because at 8 pm it is parked in front of our Frankia.
Because it cooled down, we don’t have all the windows wide open. Even on the ventilation position, enough fresh air comes in to cool the inside.
Saturday, August 6th, we wake up at 8.30 am. The sun is already shining and it is 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Really pleasant after the heat of the past few days. After our breakfast and of course the filling and dumping of our tanks we leave Remiremont. It’s Black Saturday (it’s called this name because there is a lot of holiday traffic with many accidents) and the roads are crowded with coming and going vacationers, so we’re glad we only have to drive 18 miles.
Soon we arrive in Gerardmer, a town at 2295 feet altitude, which is called the “pearl of the Vosges”. It turns out to be a picturesque place, full of tourists and situated on a lake that looks very inviting. But we don’t have time for water-pleasure. At home I solved a geocache puzzle that will take us to the coordinates of a geocache and that is our goal today. After the Frankia is parked on a huge parking lot in the middle of town, we walk towards it.
Actually, it’s more of a climb, because the road leads over a part of the route of the Tour de France and has a gradient of 13 to 16 percent. But that’s good because now I can practice walking in the mountains. As we climb higher and higher, we enjoy the view of the town and the lake is getting more and more beautiful. After we have found the geocache, we have to descent and go back to the village. This time we have an endless and steep descent and for the first time I think Dick is right when he calls me slave driver. The climb down requires a lot of our muscles and knees. For me it’s good training because in two weeks I have to cross the Pyrenees mountains but poor Dick…..
Eventually we arrive in the center of the old village with stiff muscles. To get rid of the stiffness we make a walk along the lake. It’s busy, everyone has had the same thought. This trail around the lake is therefore very pleasant.
A large rock is the end point for us and we stay there for a while before we leisurely walk back to town. After 5 miles of walking around (climbing and descending) we are back at the parking lot. While Dick takes a chair outside the motorhome, under the awning, I walk to town again, to make some extra miles and buy food for tonight. Because it gets windy late in the afternoon, we don’t stay outside. Even inside, with all windows open, it doesn’t feel very comfortable, the cold wind is no longer pleasant and at 6 pm we also close some windows. It’s just cooler here, up in the mountains.
There are many restaurants in town but we decide not to go out eating. Actually, no restaurant has the menu combination we are looking for, so we just eat lettuce and bake the small sausages that we bought in Germany. In the evening we watch some TV and we also read something before we go to bed at 10 pm, like almost every day.
On Sunday we wake up at 8 am and I go out to buy a fresh baguette from the bakery on the corner. There I am taken back to my childhood when the cuckoo clock, with a real cuckoo, calls 9 times. How funny. You used to have these clocks everywhere in Switzerland in the 60s and 70s, but afterwards I never saw such clocks in operation again. Fortunately, there is a long line at the bakery so that I can fully enjoy it.
After breakfast we leave. The back roads we follow are very quiet and we make good progress. Near our destination, the town of Vaivre et Montoille, it gets very busy. There is a biker’s festival, given the many motorcycles. We did not suspect it but to our surprise there is still a spot available in the parking lot for motorhomes and we park our Frankia there.
Of course, we drink a coffee while Dick put the coordinates of geocaches around the lake in our GPS and then, it is now noon (yes again at the hottest time of the day) we start our walk along the lake.
There are a number of geocaches hidden and a sandy path leads us along this shallow lake. It is a nice walk and there is a breeze so it’s not too hot, at least for the first half of the walk. The temperature is 77 degrees and that is good walking weather. Unfortunately, the other side of the lake is sheltered from the wind, so it is considerably warmer there. Dick is clearly more bothered by the heat than I am and the water we brought with us disappears quickly. I have to laugh when I see Dick’s face as he drinks. He doesn’t like drinking water anyway and drinking this almost “boiling” water has a special effect. Unfortunately, the only terrace we encounter is that of a restaurant. You can have a drink there, but at this moment you have to take a meal and as we don’t want to eat yet, we continue our walk. Fortunately, the walk around the lake is only 4 miles and we can relax in the motorhome a little later.
We don’t want to stay too long because inside it’s 97 degrees and therefore it is too hot. So, we leave again, now to the area next to us, where the bikers festival takes place. The festivities are already over, but it’s nice to walk past the many stalls, full of stuff for bikers and of course there is a strong American influence.
There are caps with the American flag, license plates from America and mannequins with clothing from the 50s. Given the prices that are asked for everything, it is better to pick them up in America yourself. Hopefully we are able to do that next year. Finally, after 5 miles walk, we are back at the Frankia. We put our chairs outside and sit in the shade. When the sun has set, it cools down very quickly, instead of 86 degrees it is suddenly 73 degrees. So quickly we go inside. It is now 9 pm and I don’t stay for a long time on the couch. Slowly my eyelids lower and before 10 pm we arrived in dreamland.
Monday morning, August 8th at 8 am is the sun already shining in a steel blue sky. There is no shop to be seen in the furthest distance, so no bakery either and again we have breakfast with survival bread. When we leave, we take French back roads and again we drive all alone over the French countryside. Where has everyone gone?
At the end of the morning, we arrive in Langres, a city built in the same way as Laon, located high on a hilltop and walled. Unfortunately, the parking for motorhomes is not really special and we decide to drive on. Our final destination will be Chaumont, where we arrive around noon. The parking here is located on a marina and despite the fact that it is a sun-drenched plain, it still looks nice. We park the Frankia along the water of the Canal and sit outside. The sun shines on the other side of the motorhome so we have plenty of shade and because there is a wind blowing, it is actually not too warm.
Because Dick’s favorite shirt is dirty, I wash it with some socks and sports tops and soon everything is hanging on the clothesline. Wind and sun work well together because everything is dry within three hours. A good test of how long it takes to dry clothes in warm weather. Dick likes it here and stays with the motorhome but I walk to the nearby supermarket. It is only one mile and easy to do and after walking back and forth twice, I have soft drinks for Dick (agrum zero and tonic zero) and food for tonight because also in the vicinity of this harbor, there is not even a restaurant in sight. And if it was here, it would be closed on Mondays.
At 8 pm I prepare some burgers; we eat them with lettuce and baguette. Hopefully it’s enough but Dick says yes. The older we get the less food we need. I completely disagree with him because I am quite hungry. But maybe that’s because of my walking back and forth. Fortunately, when we start to eat, the sun disappears behind the trees and again it cools down quickly. We stay at a very pleasant spot along the canal and it is quiet although quite a few motorhomes arrive later in the evening.
The next morning, Tuesday, August 9th we are awake at 8 am and after breakfast (again with survival bread) Dick moves the motorhome to refuel at the water tap. It is already very busy because three French motorhomes arrived. They want to stay together and the spot in front of our motorhome is the most suitable. We don’t mind that we leave today because the silence and also our view is now hard to find. Soon we drive north on the French back roads. It is quiet again and you notice that it is still vacation time. The road leads us past endless, freshly harvested, wheat fields and only when we approach the capital of Champagne, Epernay, the first grape vines appear.
Unfortunately, the parking in Hautvillers, located in the middle of the vineyards, is too narrow and sloping for our Frankia so we cannot spend the night here and we drive on and eventually arrive in Laon end of the afternoon. There is ample space along the city wall. No wonder because it sizzles here with heat on this parking strip, but we nevertheless park the Frankia and walk to the medieval town.
Unfortunately, our favorite restaurant Agora turns out to be closed, it won’t open again until Thursday and so we are looking for another restaurant. That is not easy because in the main street all restaurants are either permanently closed or on holiday for 5 to 6 weeks. Weird they are closed in the middle of the high season. Finally, after wandering around for a long time, we find an Italian restaurant with an appealing menu. It is striking, however, while we walk around that more shops are closed permanently. Unfortunately, because the charm of wandering through a town is lost when you walk from one closed shop window to another. We also pay a visit to the impressive cathedral. It remains special that they were able to create such impressive buildings in the year 1100.
Back in the motorhome we arrive in an oven, it is so hot inside, 104 degrees. Fortunately, the wind is blowing a bit so when we open the windows, it cools down a bit inside. Oh well, we get used to this heat. When we walk to the restaurant at 7 pm, the narrow medieval streets are now blocking the sun and we walk in the shade. The terrace where we want to have dinner is also in the shade and there is a cooling wind that makes it comfortable. The food tastes good. My spaghetti with carbonara sauce is tasty and Dick’s food with a meat skewer is also very good and nicely served. After our dessert we walk back at ease through the medieval streets with cobble stones. Again, we open all our windows and not much later we fall asleep, despite the fact that inside it is still at least 90 degrees. I think the red wine is also to blame for this.
Wednesday morning, August 10th, I walk to the bakery to get a fresh baguette. That always tastes good. And then we drive down the mountain pass to the valley, looking for a supermarket. Stupid that we never write down the coordinates of a store because now we really have to drive around before we find a large LeClerc supermarket. There is a huge parking lot but it is almost full. Fortunately, we find a spot in a corner, where our Frankia fits, and we walk inside. Everything we need to have a delicious barbecue with Cor and Esmé is present in this supermarket and not much later we are on our way again. Still with a stopover in the small town of Rozoy to dump.
Perhaps it is good that we arrive here because the rooster and chickens that roam around, are clearly looking for something. Not for people but for water and that last one flows down from our grey-water tank so they are running to the motorhome. I fill the cap of our toilet tank with clean water and in no time, it is drunk by the chickens. We did a good deed. Because it will be warmer later this day, we also put a bucket filled with water in the bushes. Now the chickens have something to drink for the rest of the day. It means that we arrive at 12.30 pm at the house of Cor and Esmé. That is not entirely without problems. The narrow road is actually only suitable for one passenger car and now we encounter a large tractor and two vans. Fortunately, it has been dry for weeks and both we and the tractor have to crawl into the verge and can just pass each other. I wonder or this is also possible in the wet season.
After a cup of coffee, Esmé and I chat, while the men focus on installing the new kitchen. Cor has already fixed the preparatory work. The ventilation, pipes and drainage are all there, but now everything still has to be put in place. Also a few problems must be solved, such as the crooked wall for which both have yet to come up with a solution. But with two technicians that is no problem and the men are making steady progress. At 7 pm it’s time to call it a day and we have a nice chat on the terrace in the garden.
It is warm, the thermometer now shows 95 degrees, so one beer is quickly followed by another. But the food tastes all the better later in the evening. Cor is really an expert with the BBQ and the burger and chicken-skewers are excellent. Even though we chat for a long time, at 11:30 pm we feel really sleepy and go to bed. We don’t even notice that our head is touching our pillow.
Thursday morning August 11th we wake up at 7:30 am and after showering and getting dressed, Dick takes my bike out and I ride to the village of Liart to buy fresh baguettes. It is a nice trip through the meadows and the distance is only 2 miles. The only shop in the village is already crowded and a long line of people forms for the baguettes. As always, this is the case in France at the bakery.
After a good breakfast, the men are back to work in the kitchen while Esmé and I wash the dishes and then we do various chores. It’s going to be another hot day. In an hour the temperature has already risen from 68 to 77 degrees and around noon the thermometer points to 86 degrees. After I’ve updated my story on my iPad mini, I can’t resist looking for blackberries in the sweltering sun. Even though I have a stick with me, it does not prevent me from losing my footing on the steep slope of the ditch and I slide down through the thorns. Not a really handy move because both my legs are now bloody. And the blackberries…. These are scattered all over the ditch.
Hopefully the ants are happy with it. I quickly walk back to the motorhome where I clean my legs and also remove the blood and blackberry marks from my clothing. After complaining to the men (they don’t pay attention because placing the kitchen is more important) I walk outside again, follow the road a bit and find new blackberries. This time they are a lot more accessible. Finally, I have a bucket full of blackberries. They are not very tasty so after I rinse them, I cook them. I hope this blackberry puree may be tasty in the yogurt or ice cream. Unfortunately, we don’t have either one so we cannot try. Around 7 pm the men stop working, they take a shower and we have a drink on the terrace. Late in the evening I cook spaghetti while Esmé makes a salad. Dinner tastes fine to us. When the big full moon rises above the row of trees we go to bed and sleep like roses.
Just like yesterday, we wake up on Friday morning at 7.30 am and again I cycle to the village of Liart in the still cool morning, to arrive a little later with croissants and fresh baguettes. We have breakfast together, chat and then Dick and I leave. In Revin we stop to dump, always important if we stayed in the same place for a few days. Of course, we also buy some groceries and fill up with fuel. The diesel in France is still cheaper than in our country. I also sniff around in the bazar next to the parking lot and there I find what I have been looking for, for a long time. A granite funerary monument for my parents’ grave.
Via Facetime I show it to my sister Hannah who likes it too and so I buy it and walk back to the motorhome. You find such small monuments on all graves in France and now we will place one at my parent’s grave.
It is now at least 95 degrees, but we also want to look for a few geocaches. To my surprise, we find a spot on the boulevard in Bergen op Zoom to park. For the first time we arrive here in high summer and it is busy. But also, cozy.
It is good outside because here, along the coast, some wind is blowing. We also could park the Frankia largely in the shade of the tall trees along the boulevard and it is not really hot inside either. Now that we are parked next to a small lake, I can try out whether it is possible to swim in shirt and underpants, instead of a bathing suit. In particular, I want to know if I don’t look really ridiculous. So, towards the evening I put that on. If it can go through, Dick has to take a picture, then I won’t take a swimsuit on my Camino walk. My thin white shirt is too transparent, but my green yellow Camino shirt, that Hannah and Henk gave me, is fine. Now I know this too.
Until late in the evening we sit outside, eat food from a Turkish restaurant, watch all the people strolling on the boulevard and enjoy the sunset. We don’t go to bed before 11 pm.
The next morning, we get up at 7.30 am, have breakfast with our last survival bread and then we drive home. It is getting warmer and warmer but compared to the temperature in our house, it is 102 degrees there, it’s cool outside. Yet we are getting warmer by carrying stuff back and forth. Not everything goes inside our house. We leave some clothes in the motorhome. After all, Dick will be taking it out again next week. Unfortunately, the parking lot behind our house is so busy with cars and caravans, returning from vacation, that we can’t park our Frankia here overnight. So as soon as Dick has cleaned the carpet with soap (now it can dry in the hot sun) he drives the motorhome to the storage. We did not clean it outside, currently that’s not allowed due to the persistent drought and heat, but it’s clean inside and the beds are covered with fresh bedding, so Dick and Cor will be able to move in next week.