contentedsouls

Join us on our travels around Europe aboard our Dutch Tjalk Francoise

  • Jill Budd

    After 6 years aboard our Narrowboat Matilda Rose in the UK, we took the plunge and shipped her across to Europe. After 2 years in Europe we knew we didn't want to return to the UK so took the plunge and purchased a 1902 20 mtr Dutch Tjalk called Francoise and are now continuing our travels of the waterways of Europe in a buxom wench

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Bree into Holland, mooring at Weert

Posted by contentedsouls on 26/06/2017

There you go – we’ve caught up a bit now and you have joined me in the Netherlands.

Leaving Bree we had two more locks to clear in Flanders before crossing the border into Holland. At the first of the two, the lockie came and took our details and then disappeared into his control box. After some time he came back again and asked for our licence – G pointed to the wheelhouse window where it was displayed (as per our instructions). Mr Grumpy lockie said it should be displayed on our stern and we weren’t on the system; fed up I replied that they had taken our money. He stomped off and down we went. I think the following lock, just down river, was controlled by him remotely. The boat wasn’t even through the gates when they started to close and I jumped off to get a rope on as quickly as possible but he was emptying the lock so fast that I only just managed to get back on the boat – no time to get a rope on let alone use the rubbish skip there as I had hoped. Not a pleasant end to our short visit, but no harm done other than to my mood.

The sidestream coming out of the lock was heavy – that’ll make for an interesting lock entry going up

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Very undramatically, G changed the flag, and we crossed into Holland – the only indication being a barely glimpsed road sign

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Our first two observations were that there was bankside fuel available and that the fuel price had dropped again to 1.14 euros. No idea what the signs say and this is a considerable problem. Guillotine lock didn’t chop Francoise in half so that all went well.

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Moored on a concrete car park opposite a car sales yard (with car boot sale going on) which turned into a lorry park at night; the drivers were as good as gold and we never even heard them leave in the wee small hours.

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Now you may think this is not your idea of a first night’s mooring in Holland (not a windmill in sight) but it had many pluses. The biggest of which was this dirty great Nature Park and we we were joined the next day by Janita so Lisa, Bilbo, Muttley and I had a ball. Bilbo is gorgeous but very strong and he walks her several times a day – here they could play happily off the lead together with any canine additions we collected along the way. Even the deer were up for playtime had there not been a fence in the way.

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In fact it was here that Lisa trained Bilbo to be a speedboat so that she could water ski behind him – here she is perfecting a beached landing.

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2 Responses to “Bree into Holland, mooring at Weert”

  1. Kevin TOO said

    What an ignorant lockie, he clearly doesn’t know who he’s dealing with, oh well he’ll know by the time you return… LOL
    Quite a reasonable speed limit, 50kph, on the canal in built up areas… like to see the wash from that 😉

    BTW, nice to have you back again, you have been missed 🙂

    Like

    • Sometimes the wash feels like they ARE doing 50 kph Kevin. It transpires that that lockie was rude to other people too. Activating that 2nd lock like that was downright dangerous and I can’t get out of my head that friends of ours had their wheelhouse flattened when they dropped a lift bridge prematurely.

      I don’t know if we’ll go back that way yet; or even if we’ll go back. Now we believe the rules through Germany have changed we have so many options.

      Nice to be back and thank you – it’s pretty soul destroying to be spending all that time and not being able to publish anything!

      Liked by 1 person

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