I have been feeling pretty crappy for about a month, finally I am feeling more like my old self again. Maybe now I can do some hiking and kayaking on a regular basis again.
I woke up early to have the hubby drive me to Rijpwetering. From there I rode my bike the last three kilometers to the campsite. I could celebrate some time on the water as the summer solstice approaches.
The water was calm but with the warm weather it had the feel of the lull before the storm. Humid, sticky warm, and still air. I entered the water and headed on the canoe route the hubby and I had taken a few weeks ago through the Vennemeer Lake.
I was also testing out my camera equipment for the kayak.
With this set up it gives me some flexibility and some hight off the bow of the kayak. I control the camera through my cell phone app via wifi. It takes a bit of time for setting up. In concept it works great but the wifi kills the camera battery quickly. Not as successful as I had hoped it would be for an option. I got three good pictures before the battery died.
As I approached the Lake Vennemeer I was treated to an explosion of birds flying and singing in the local pastures. But there was one bird that caught my eye, I sat for a while and watched as this wonderful bird (I thought it was a hawk) stretched its’ wings then took flight. Once I returned home and consulted my bird book I found out it was a Common European Buzzard (Dutch: Buizerd- Buteo buteo).
As I headed out of the lake and back towards the canal that leads back to the campground an interesting old barn door caught my eye. I took this side canal to get a closer look and was rewarded with not only the next pictures but a wonderful conversation with the owner of the dairy farm, Paul. With 60 cows to milk I was honored that he took a few minutes to share some time in conversation.
Continuing on my paddle I clearly now knew I had to pump up my paddle power and get back to the campground. The dark clouds not only were moving in but I was starting to see lightning in the distance. I suddenly got a text message from the hubby that the storm was moving faster than predicted. I could feel the electric, eerie feeling of the approaching storm. The wind picked up, the birds (who minutes before were singing) now stopped and there was a sudden drop of temperature. I reached the first bridge and stopped and turned towards the thunder. Looking at the dark sky I knew I had limited time to get off the water.
I paddled under the first bridge, the second bridge, and finally the third and last bridge before rounding into the harbor and the launch point.
The wind hit me in the face, as the power of the solstice seemed to add to the fuel of the storm. I saw a couple in the harbor fighting to get their sail boat back into the slip. I felt the first of the rain drops as I pulled to the launch.
The rain came down in streams as I made it to the caravan to wait out the storm. Lightning hitting the fields and thunder shaking the caravan. I sat and drank a cup of coffee, watching and admiring the power of the solstice storm.
The storm passed quickly.
I was able to bale the water out of the kayak and then biked the 16 kilometers home for lunch. I was never so happy to see leftover pizza in the refrigerator at home!
Do you have plans for a solstice celebration? Share them in our comments.
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