Welcome to farmer’s land – also known as the small village of Nieuwleusen! After spending last Thursday at the (very busy, very crowded and very loud) jazz festival, Joost and I decided to pack our bags, head north and get away for a little R&R. Obviously I have no idea what the future holds, but if the words “homeowners” and “Netherlands” are in the same sentence – I can only hope it’s somewhere of the like. Besides, where else am I going to raise my pet sheep?
After two hours or so of driving, we finally made it and were surrounded by green pastures, typical farm animals (even Belted Galloway aka oreo cows), and most importantly, Joost’s dad and Margreet! Our visit consisted of great conversation, learning how to drive a stick shift (only stalled out 7 times), highly intense board games (yours truly won every game – insert evil laugh), jogs through the forest, eventful bike rides (to be explained in just a moment), tending to the horses in wooden clogs, shopping, visiting a mansion (coming soon to a S&B post near you) and peace + quiet (minus the 9am Saturday morning tractor show, where every farmer felt it was necessary to lay on their horns… not honk, but lay). All in all, Joost and I had a wonderful weekend and can’t wait to visit again soon.
The weather looked promising – blue skies, white, fluffy clouds and sunshine – so we decided to take a bike ride through the forest. Dear little Mother Nature proved my statement, “never trust Holland’s blue skies and sunshine” to be exactly right. About 15 minutes into our ride, the clouds turned dark, the flood gates opened and we were drenched (I should really invest in waterproof mascara) – and I’m not talking sprinkles, but a full on torrential downpour. Joost joked that I am now, officially, a Dutch woman as I’ve been initiated into the culture. But really, once was enough.
The downpour only lasted 10 or so minutes, so Joost and I decided to head back, change and continue our cycling adventures. I gave up on ‘being cute’ and immediately went for my running gear (in case of any other wet surprises). We enjoyed ‘baa’ing at the sheep (yes, we are those kind of people) and taking in all of the beautiful country sights.
Everything about the country agreed with me – except Ollie the Cat. He obviously wasn’t a fan.
Until next time – tot ziens!
XX – Whitney