Today we just had 50km to cycle, then we were going to visit one of Dave’s friends Theo, his wife Emma and their baby Oscar.
When we woke up, the weather was still a bit gross and we wiled away most of the morning in the tent, unwilling to get up. Eventually, we managed to pack up in the relative dry but once we were on the road, the drizzle seeped in.
We rode through a bit more of the forest before having to brave the open road. The forest was lovely – the trees kept the wind and rain off us. But on the cycle path by the road with fields either side, we got rain straight in the face as we rode into the wind.
There weren’t any picnic benches to be found, so after 25km we resorted to picnicking by the side of the cycle path. Whenever a big lorry went past on the road, we had to shield our sandwiches from the road spray. Not the best, but we needed to refuel and felt better afterwards.
In the afternoon, we found some nice canal-side cycle paths and enjoyed the last stretch before Amersfoort. Then we cycled up the only hill in the Netherlands (a full 20 meter climb!) to arrive in the thatched suburbia where Theo and Emma live. We pulled up outside their house and sat in their front garden whilst Emma came back from walking baby Oscar and the dog Winston. By this time, the sun was trying to peek through the clouds and it was humid and nicely warm.
When Emma rounded the corner and saw us, she nearly had her arm pulled out of its socked by Oscar excitedly jumping the hedge to greet us! Emma welcomed us in and we unloaded, unpacked and had showers between having chats. Dave and Emma were catching up whilst Emma and I were getting to know each other. Since Dave last saw the pair of them, they’ve moved to the Netherlands, got married and had a baby!
We had such a nice afternoon and evening together. We went to the shops, talked a lot about all of our travels, discussed their impending house move and entertained baby Oscar. Then Theo came home from work, we had a delicious dinner, a few glasses of wine and more story sharing. At 11pm we had to call it a night and went to our lovely comfy bed feeling happy and sleepy. It felt like such a nice long day with all that good food and conversation – and no campsite activities to be done! What a luxury. Thanks Emma and Theo!