After leaving the campsite around noon we headed to a small town north of Amsterdam, Monnickendam , here we found an easy park and went to explore. A beautiful place and not spoilt with a lot of tourists and souvenir shops. The town had many small canals with quaint bridges some dating back to the 13th century. On many of the walls there were house plaques depicting what the places where previously, what they are now or relating to the name of the householder. The weather had been kind to us and it was a beautiful day, even warm enough to buy an ice cream.
We arrived at Gaby and Renko’s at 5 p.m. and had a warm welcome, we hadn’t seen each other for two years as last year’s events made it difficult. It seemed as if no time had elapsed since our last visit and we felt comfortable and relaxed staying there for the next 2 days. On Saturday morning Renko helped install our new air vent for the bathroom which we had bought at the camping shop, It was a easy job as Renko had the right tools for the job. We found that it was always damp in the bathroom, as we have put a clothes line it to hang wet towels and clothes, the new vent we hope will allow more air to circulate.
In the afternoon we went to a steam museum which was very interesting as it had many working display models in use, the staff were “hands on” and explained how everything worked. While we were there they fired up one of the large engines which was used to pump water, these took over from the windmills that the Netherlands is so famous for. Dinner that evening was at the Gewoon Leker restaurant, translated it means Simply Delicious, it was an all you can eat restaurant where you could chose from 30 different dishes which came in small serves. A little like a degustation menu, but you could order anything in any order. Excellent food that lived up to the name and really well presented, needless to say we ate far too much but had a great time.
On Sunday after a slow start we spent the morning hanging around the house and then went for a walk past the fields around the village and then on to the next small village where there was a flower festival. Along the streets people had made displays of flowers and these were judged according to their category. There was a market set up and of course places to have food and drinks, we didn’t partake of anything as waiting back at their house was a freshly baked apple pie which Renko had made using apples from their garden.
After pie and coffee we said our goodbyes and left Winkel at about 7.30 to go to the City Camp in Amsterdam. We look forward to seeing them again when we return to Holland, as Gaby and Renko have invited us back again to visit. As the Dutch say it was “gezellig”.