07 July 2005

The swallows in Zeeland lie ...

We're home, drying out and doing a bit of laundry and packing some warmer clothes - back to the campground tomorrow morning. What a start to a vacation! You can't have worse camping weather than we've had so far: heavy rains, thunder & lightening storms, high winds, etc. Last evening it was actually dry for an hour or two, and Niek & I were watching the high-flying swallows ("when swallows fly high, you'll enjoy fair sky" or some such nonsense) thinking we would finally enjoy some good summer weather, but before we knew it, the lightening was splitting the sky and we were running for the tent.

Our summer holiday so far

Drove off in a light but persistant rain for our unseen camping destination in Arnemuiden, Zeeland at De Witte Raaf. Arrived to find our tent infested with red ants. Got a replacement tent that only had black ants.

Overcast, muggy day that was perfect for the kids to enjoy the freshwater beach that is on the campground. Niek even managed to get a sunburn. So far, so good.

Sunday night:
Truly the most intense thunder & lightening storm I have ever witnessed, let alone from a flapping tent. Cold, too!! I nearly dragged the whole family into our parked car to avoid being struck by lightening.

Rain, rain, rain. Rained more in one day than the average rainfall for an entire month. We went to a pirate "museum" in Zeeland (the Arsenaal) that the kids really enjoyed.

The rain continued and we were treated to another heavenly pyrotechnic display all night long. There are now ducks swimming in the grass, the water is so high. We drove around Vlissingen and during a break in the weather, enjoyed a picnic of fresh-fried fish (kibbling) and cherries overlooking the sea. When Niek suggested a stop at a beach, I thought he was nuts, but the weather held. The kids and I saw our first jellyfish, but no one got stung. Max added to his impressive seashell collection. However, soon after dinner, the rain started again.

Niek drove us all the way to Gent, in Belgium, to try and get out from under the storm center. To no avial. We ducked into a mall, where we ate Italian food and purchased some famous Belgian waffles from a supermarket and drove back to the soggy campground and our damp belongings.

Wednesday night:
More stormy weather. Laying in bed, I began to fear that the whole tent would blow off and we would awaken in France. I yelled to Niek, over the crashing thunder, that if it was still raining in the morning, I want to go home for a day.

Here we are, back in Gouda. The sun is out! The bird and cat are thrilled to have us home, even if only for a day. The laundry is running and tonight I'll pack some warmer clothes, even though everyone assures us the foul weather is over. The kids are having a grand time playing with their toys, Niek is stretched out reading a book, and for the first time this week, it feels like vacation!
posted by mainely stitching at 12:12 PM ¤ Permalink ¤ |