Enough of all the food talk. Time for some exercise… last time I took you downtown with me. I also showed you a little about how we celebrate Queensday. Today it’s family time. How about a long walk? I’m taking you with us on our after dinner walk. Usually somewhere between 6 and 6:30pm we grab our shoes and go outside for a long walk. When the sun is almost going down and it’s nice and quiet around here. The light wasn’t fabulous for photos today, but I tried my best.
I live at the edge of Gouda. Literally. Right next to a huge park. Come on, I’ll show you…
Somehow we always start here. I love this park, it’s right next to my house and I’ve spent countless hours walking around here. First with our dog and later with our son. This is a fantastic place for kids to grow up! There’s a huge playground in the park. HUGE. And a special part of the park is reserved for building huts. There’s a basketball field and a small pond. All neighborhood kids gather up here.
And playing is something he does all the time. Hmmm… makes me wonder. What if I’d put a fence like that in front of his bedroom door?
You’ll run into cows in all colors and sizes. Yes, we’re still in the park now, I’ve got country life right next door, you know. Kinda fun when you think about the fact I live in the burbs.
You’ll also run into sheep. Lots of them.
And you run into less pretty and rural stuff, too. But a girl needs some electricity as well!
Gouda is a really nice place to live. You’ve got it all here. Old buildings, cheese, good restaurants and a semi nightlife, but also peace and quiet when you need it.
They have a thing for hot air balloons here. In all sorts of strange shapes. It’s like an epidemic lately. Could it be aliens?
Of course we have to walk up a dike. That’s dike with an I and not a Y, mind you. They’re what keeps us from flooding. At least that’s what they’re supposed to do but I’m not too keen on putting them to the test.
As soon as you’re standing on top of the dike, you can see the suburb I live in. Shucks. My house is under hot air balloon attack. Told you they’re everywhere.
I brought my camera with me because of how the light fell on the wheat field yesterday. Goes without saying those evildoers cropped their wheat today. Today! They couldn’t have waited one lousy day, until I had my photos.
The cat didn’t seem to mind.
To show you just how small my country is, check this out. I’m standing on top of the dike, to my left is the suburb I live in and what you see here on my right is the next village, it’s called Haastrecht. Literally translated that would mean almost straight. See, now that’s what I get for all this talking about dikes!
Know “Walking in fields of gold“ by Sting? Just sayin’. Gorgeous song.
Here’s what we call our ”Gemaal“. Not sure there’s a translation for that. It’s what regulates the water level. Notice the heron? You see an awful lot of them around here.
What you also see is men riding their wife’s bikes to ”walk” their dogs. In this case it was more the dog walking his owner. He practically dragged the dude around.
It got chilly, I lost the light and we were nearing the kiddo’s bedtime so it was time to head home.
With all these dikes, you need escape routes. Lots of staircases everywhere.
This particular ones leads to J-man’s favorite place in the neighborhood. The children’s farm. Yup, we also have one of those in the park, though it’s tiny. That child of mine has no clue just how lucky he is growing up in such a kid-friendly place.
We walked back home through an arch of autumn colored leaves.
Where he tried to convince us with all his might he really, really needed to take this 5 foot branch home with him. Tough luck, kid.