I am not really one for talking seriously about the “End of Times” but when yesterday a bunch of scientists declared we are 30 seconds closer…it made me…yes… Hummm…
I laughed and made jokes and went about my day. I have heard it all before that we are close but this time, it could be actually true. Hummm… if you knew it was what would you do?
There must be people really thinking it could actually happen this time. As I was approached, not once but twice in this month by people who knock on my door and want to spread the “word”. Good for them, but I would rather do something creative with my time.
The situation is concerning in both Ukraine and Afghanistan. War or the aftermath of war is never easy or fun. Hummm… at least it now seems my former employer is doing something to help!
I know that democracy must win! We can’t wait for others to do the hard work. If doomsday is closer we each should hope we did enough to stop or at least slow it down.
So, do I need Divine intervention?
I think if there is a possibility of a Divine then I think maybe it could give a push to fix some of these issues we are facing, or maybe push some people to do the “right thing” to help.
As far as my plan, I will laugh at the doomsday clock, continue to close the door at people who try to “push” their religious belief on me, help those I can and dance like baby groot from the Guardians of the Galaxy 2 movie intro.
For all you who don’t believe in democracy and want to stop those of us who do… Hummm… I will never surrender!
I was hopeful that Day 2 of this Floris V Pad hike would be a bit nicer than Day 1. The Hubby and I had already decided that I would skip hiking through the Kilt Tunnel (full of construction noise) and start on the opposite side of the river.
The Hubby was going to be my chase car for the day as he didn’t want to go all the way back into Dordrecht. So he quickly dropped me at my start point started programing my end point into the gps. I started my hike.
This part of the Floris V the top of the large dike that follows along the river giving hikers a wonderful view of both the river and the landscape.
The universe had other plans for me! As I reached the gate at the top of the dike the largest angriest Doberman dog came at me barking and hitting the fence and gate from the other side (the side where the trail clearly was marked). I backed off and saw a lady who tried (unsuccessfully) to call her dog.
Something about looking at angry teeth and the fact the dog didn’t seem to be listening was disturbing. I just waited and finally after several minutes the dog owner approached but she didn’t get control of her dog. Instead she asked me if I really needed to be here!
I calmly explained I was hiking the Floris V Pad and that it was clearly marked. I would wait for her to control her dog. In the mean time the Hubby slowly went by me in our van heading towards our link up point, the dog started running after our vehicle and was just as angry. All the while the dog owner tried to get me to walk somewhere else.
With no other options available and clearly this dog owner was not backing down or controlling her dog. I altered my route to the side pavement below the dike. To say I was a bit pissed at the way the day started would be a huge understatement! I considered ways the universe could take both her and her dog off the face of the planet!
After a few kilometers I was able to climb some steps back to the top of the dike. I checked to make sure that the woman and her dog were not in sight and continued towards the village of De Wacht. Viewing the river traffic as I went.
At the village I descend concrete stairs into the village. Passed by a couple of cute small gardens and then headed out into the farmland landscape. Flat landscape.
The heat was starting to build and the pavement was getting hot. A hiker with a history of heat exhaustion, I was already checking out the map and scanning the area for trees or any sort of shade.
When I emerged from my stop in the shade I started thinking I was seeing things as a van that looked like ours crossed the road I was hiking, too far away, I couldn’t be sure it was our vehicle.
As I got closer to the intersection a nice grouping of trees provided so shade. Once again I saw one of these…
I started thinking maybe I should invest in a container full of these mailboxes as they seem to be suddenly popular with the Dutch.
I texted the Hubby my location and asked if he had passed by me. The answer… he couldn’t open my Apple product map so he had no idea where I was. He texted me his location and I told him I was close and getting ready to start the last part of the trail.
After several more messages and a van zipping past me, me waving, jumping up and down, van continuing off into the flat landscape, turning and then a text that he couldn’t find me, he would meet me at the end point.
I continued on, smiling to myself that I have a wonderful partner even though he sometimes doesn’t “see” me waving my arms and jumping around like a fool in the middle of no where farm land.
Now as I got closer to my end point and walked through the dust being kicked up from several tractors working in the dry fields. I was ready to put this part of the Floris V Pad behind me! Not much to see or talk about on this section.
This cute village was the highlight of my hike.
Hiking off the overview and into the village it was filled with small houses with cute gardens. I came up to a bridge and had a lock for boats.
The Hubby was waiting with a story to tell. Construction, wrong turns, not seeing me, and a gps that had inadvertently put him in the middle of farmland that was blocked by tractors! He had a rough time being my chase car for the day. But, like all good partners that get sucked into our passionate adventures he deserves my heartfelt gratitude. After 15 years together we have had many such adventures and he still is volunteering to help.
I just hope the next section I hike of the Floris V will be less of a challenge for the chase car.😊
This 2nd day of hiking was 9 km. 18km closer to my destination at Bergen op Zoom.
This blog is a bit late… I completed this section of the Floris V in late April…No excuse for publishing late only that sometimes it is hard to get a blog to flow…
Last week (end of April 🤨) was the first time since last August 2021 that I had hiked on the Floris V Pad heading towards my goal and end point Bergen op Zoom. I have taken my own sweet time in hiking this trail, not on purpose or by design, just that life sometimes interferes with what I want to accomplish. (Guess that can also be said for writing a blog!)
The Floris V Pad up to this point was fairly easy to get to my start and stop points by public transport. This section is getting more challenging to use bus or train, this is a less populated area of The Netherlands.
This time I asked for transport help from the Hubby. He volunteered (yeah, right… you think he had a real choice?) to get me to and from my start and stop points for two days while we camped in the Biesbosch National Park.
You think he had an easy job?
I think not… but let me get started before I jump ahead of my story.
At this point I had completed 158 km of my total goal to reach 245km. In August 2021 I had stopped just outside the De Elzen nature area. So this is where I started.
My plan was to hike to a small industrial area close to the Kiltunnel (a long large traffic and pedestrian tunnel that goes under the Dordtsche Kil River). A nice restaurant where the Hubby could meet me and we could have a celebration coffee.
I started hearing birds everywhere in the canopy of the trees.
The air was cool and the sky a crystal blue above the trees. I saw only two other people while inside the nature park. After dodging people for the past two years during COVID (even when hiking in this densely populated country) I was so glad to be hiking alone in nature.
The trial now started to incline, here that means I was climbing a small dike and soon I saw that there was even a bigger dike on my left. The trail was now a roadway, hot, long, with the occasional pair of +65 cyclists speeding by me on electric bikes. That did very little for my enthusiasm for continuing the hike but I didn’t want to throw in the white flag and stop. Yes, I did want to do that, but I convinced myself I needed to keep moving.
Flat farmland surrounded me, except for the dike. I could see Dordrecht in the distance.
I finally came to a small wooded area with some shade and stopped for a drink of water. Luckily, there were two very busy birders. You might know the kind, two pair of binoculars, scanning the trees, fields, looking very intense. I asked what birds they had seen and they rattled off a list of Dutch bird names that made my head spin. I offered the De Elzen nature park as a possible next location to them and they happily thanked me, jumped into their car and headed in the direction I had just hiked.
These are the interesting interactions I love about hiking. These are real people with real passionate hobbies who are willing to be just who they are, down to earth and friendly with a fellow outdoor person.
The trail now was on top of another dike so I was looking over flat farmland. Tractors were speeding through the fields, kicking up dust. It seemed that it was awfully dry. I was getting hot, the pavement was hot and I was just looking for the next bunch of trees to be a bit cooler.
For those readers who remember my Hummm…blog from April that is when on this hike I started seeing American post boxes. I did think maybe I was starting to hallucinate, so I started taking pictures of each one I saw, just to make sure…I was still in my right mind.
Now I had to cross a railroad track.
Heading now into a very industrial area the hike provided little in the way of scenery. Large logistical buildings lined my route towards the river front.
I was finally approaching my end point and hopefully a cup of coffee in celebration. I texted the Hubby and my motivation was killed as he texted back that the restaurant where he was sitting was closed. Oh my!
When I arrived at the link up location the Hubby informed me of his less than enthusiastic adventure of dodging construction just to get to my location. If he only knew what was to come on day 2…
Those regular readers of my blog already know to be amazed at the items that the universe places in my path.
This week is vacation week in The Netherlands for most people. The Hubby only has three days off but we decided to escape to one of our favorite camping spots at the Biesbosch. Then I would try to get my hiking feet to pound the kilometers I still have to complete the Floris V Pad hiking trail. Oh, how I digress, this is a Hummm blog. Yes, I found these at our camping and along my route.