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

  • August 2018
    M T W T F S S
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How to drown your visitors. Skutsje Racing 2018

Posted by contentedsouls on 27/08/2018

The Skutsje racing is a very big deal in Friesland and positioning your boat to get a good view takes a fair bit of planning. In addition we had invited Gezina & Gerrit out for the day which meant we needed land access. It worked out rather well, with ‘Rachel’ moored on the mainland and us on the island adjacent to the racing and a tender apiece to collect visitor’s and get back and forth. We were very lucky to get a mooring and we only managed by being naughty and mooring by the bin, in a space that’s reserved for access by the bin emptying boats – no way would they be along to empty it on a race day.

So part of the planning involved getting out of the boatyard and catching up with Rachel. By then, the heatwave had hit us and pretty much pinned us to the decks. Here’s some pretty pictures of our cruises en route to watch Wednesday’s race – and some not so pretty pictures of the mess left behind from the post race party on Monday. Appalling and not something often seen in the NL.


Tuesday’s race was abandoned as there wasn’t a breath of wind. Wednesday the heatwave broke and we had strong winds and some lively water – so lively that our little electric motor on our tender wasn’t man enough to cross the lake to pick up G & G. Malcolm kindly picked them up in his sturdier tender with his more powerful outboard and brought them across to us. To say it was rough doesn’t really fully express the conditions, however they arrived safe and sound … but wet….very wet… wetter than wet things. In fact I don’t think they could have been wetter if they had swam across.

P1260178 - CopyP1260179 - Copy

By the time we provided Gerrit with a towel and a change of clothes, Gezina discovered that both there phones had drowned and, far worse, her essential medication inside a pill box which was inside her handbag which was inside a plastic bag; had dissolved. So there was no choice but for the intrepid duo of Malcolm and Gezina to turn around and head back to shore so that Gezina could drive back and get replacements.


When they arrived back the next time, they had made modifications to their transport!


After a rocky start (pun intended), we had a lovely day watching the racing from the vantage point of Francoise’ roofs (including Diesel the dog). Malcolm, again, transporting them back to land after we all enjoyed supper together – thank you.


After a lovely day I was quite tired when I went to bed and looking forward to a nice lie in and a lazy day … hmm.. remember that bit at the beginning where I said we’d parked illegally in the Bin Man’s space? Here he is…bright and early, bless him.


So we held off until he’d finished and then tied up again. After that the weather rapidly started to deteriorate


We spent a very uncomfortable and noisy night with the anchor down – our other friends around the corner broke free of their anchor, but we were fortunate enough to ‘hold’. They, and we, scuttled off through the bridge in the morning to quieter waters and had a lovely evening together. Quite tired now.


2 Responses to “How to drown your visitors. Skutsje Racing 2018”

  1. vallypee said

    You do have some adventures, our Jill! Still, it looks as if good fun was had by all. As for the mess after the event, that looks quite normal to me here in NL. Events are where everyone chucks their litter any old where because there’s always a big clean up crew afterwards. That’s definitely how it works down our way and in Rotterdam…and it really does all get cleaned up although after New Year, it can take a while. I’ve got used to it now but was shocked at first. Keep safe up there in all this weather we are having now!


    • There’s rarely a dull moment!

      When we were in Drachten there was a big fair/concert happening. Huge bins everywhere with tall posts (so they could be seen over people’s heads) marking, ‘plastic’, ‘paper’, ‘restaval’ so everything was recycled on the spot. This is more like we are used to seeing, so it was a shock.

      These winds are pretty horrid – especially if it is a side wind across the bigger Meres. Have had to postpone today’s journey until it drops this evening.


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