Day 1, July 3rd

It was time to say goodbye to our airbnb in Sneek and we packed everything up for our next stay at my sister Ingrid in Hattemerbroek. But before we drove to another family reunion in Coevorden. This time it was with my siblings and the next generation, 23 people in total.

We arrived just after 11 and the coffee and cream cake. Off course lots of socializing and chatting. I helped with preparing the rolls for lunch. For lunch we had soup and mentioned rolls.

Paula with the wheelbarrow carrying the refreshments. 

After lunch we had a surprise event called "klootschieten" which literally means shooting balls/nuts. It is a low key sport where 2 teams compete by walking along a course along the street. Each team takes a turn throwing a ball along the street. The team with the least amount of throws would win.

Moving along with klootschieten, dark clouds moving in

In theory this is easy but in reality the ball bounces of the road and jumps in the sides and into the bushes. After one of the first throws it took more than 10 minutes to recover the ball. We took a wheelbarrow to carry some refreshments (beer).

Good look intot the wheelbarrow

Things got a little exciting when big thunder clouds started to show halfway the course and we decided to cut the course a little short. My team ended up in 2nd place.

I am making sure everthing is going according the rules

When we got back went to view my niece Romy's new apartment in Coevorden. They had done some extensive remodeling, but the end was in sight.

When we got back the barbecue had already been fired up for dinner. There were various meats, salads, suaces and breads. Finished the meal of with a nice whiskey.

Then it was time to say goodbye and we went to our next overnight at Ingrid and Fons, a 45 minutes drive. Distances seems so small in the Netherlands.

Sunset over the IJssel

Day 2 July 4th

Slept very well the first night at Ingrid's. After a weekend of being off the bike was ready for a bike ride. So I picked up a route in the Zwolsche bosch, near Ingrid's house. I included some of the mountain bike trails there in the bosch (forest).

Trails in Zwolsche Bosch

Since me legs felt strong did some intervals on the trails. These were excellent for veldrij (cyclocross) training. In total rode 15 miles.

Some obstacles in het Zwolsche Bosch

In the afternoon Paula and I went to see my dad. He has alzheimer and lives in an assisted living facility. We met my mom at the entrance of the Aleidan Kramer zorg centrum in Coevorden.

When we went into his room he was still doing his afternoon nap. Good to see that he still recognized me. He was a bit sleepy, but after taking him for a walk in his new wheelchair perked up. We went to the restaurant and had something to drink. Since Dad could not choose between rivella and apple juice. We made him a mixer of the two.

After the visit we took my mom for some icecream. We sat down outside on the patio at the Ganzenmarkt.

Day 3 July 5th

Me not paying attention had forgot to return the Sneek's airbnb's towel and had left some cycling clothes at the Airbnb. So Tuesday morning we drove out to Sneek again to do the exchange. We checked the news websites to see if there were any farmer protests on our route fortunately not. Once we picked up the clothes we got something to drink and eat at a little patio along a canal in the center of Sneek. I had a capucinno and a tiramisu.

Tiramisu with whipped cream

On the way back to Hattemerbroek we stopped in Kampen, a very pitoresque city along the shores of the river the IJssel.

We walked for a bit through the city center and had lunch at Fish restaurant "Het Bottertje".

Paula with her onion covered herring

We both had a herring and some fried fish,  I had a "Lekkerbekje" and Paula the "Kibbling".

Lekkerbekje; fried fish

Since I wanted to return the Hertz rental car a day earlier, we had a short stop at the Hertz rental agency in Zwolle to make sure we could return it earlier and in Zwolle instead of at Schiphol.


Back at Ingrid's we saw cousins Bart and Fabian as they were getting ready to wake board. We were going to meet them at the wakeboard center about 15 miles away. Paula, Ingrid and I decided to ride our bikes.

Ingrid and Paula

Ingrid and I created a route to the Wake board center and soon were on our way. First through the Heather fields and forests. Then we passed some fields and the donkey center, where we stopped for some photos.  Shortly after we rode through the town Epe and then followed a rail trail to Emst where the wakeboard center was.

Donkey center

At the wake board center found the 2 disappointed cousins as the equipment had broken down. We also met Fons, Mattias and Jasmijn and we stayed there for dinner. By the time we were done with dinner the equipment was fixed, but we had to go back.

Along the Apeldoornse canal

The three of us on the bike and we now followed a the Appeldoornse kanaal most of the way back north west. At the end we did a little improv on the trails through the woods back to the house. A fun 33 mile bike trip.

Day 4 July 6th

I had not run in awhile, but last week in Lisbon did my first run in a while, and decided to for a run. There are some heather fields near my sister's house. I headed into that direction. In the beginning was running a little gingerly as my legs where a little stiff. After warming up it went much better and felt I could go much faster and longer. I decided to go longer and ran for 40 minutes with a 12 min/mile pace. Was good to feel that my energy levels were back again.

Run across the heather fields

Since we start our RV part the next day, I returned our rental car back in Zwolle. There was a small 30 euro fee for not returning it to Schiphol but was worth the travel time and costs we avoided. The agent kindly asked me if I had filled up the tank. Which I had forgotten, he let me fill up the tank and avoid the expensive refilling fee.

Bike path near Oldebroek

Fons picked me up at the rental place and we drove back to their house as we had planned a bike trip in the afternoon. Fons and Ingrid had the afternoon off. So we did a loop around the large military terrrain.

Fons passing horses and willows

A loop of 24 miles again along beautiful little bike paths first in the polder passed Oldebroek. We then had a quick refreshment stop in 't Harde on the patio. And then continued the last 2/3s of our loop along the military base up the "Knobbel" (bump) and the through the forest and heather fields back to Hattemerbroek. There were signs of wild boars but none sighted.

Riding along the military base

When we got back caught the last 2km of the Tour de France cobblestone stage near Roubaix and then we went to Zwolle for dinner at the restaurant Eline works. The restaurant called Bennies, it was beach themed as the patio was covered with beach sand. The menu had all kinds of mexican themed food. I had mexican tacos with pork and we had some sides. Unfortunately it was a little cool and when we finished our food, moved to another patio at La Rosas with a heater and had an Irish coffee. Nephew Bart who lives in Zwolle joined us for a beer, before we headed back home.

Fons and Ingrid on front of their office where we had parked the car