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20 travelers at this place

  • Day4

    Entspannter Tag

    June 3, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 17 °C

    Es wurden dann doch 61 km, aber sehr entspannt und viel Zeit für Gent. Eine wirklich sehr schöne Stadt, die man unbedingt besuchen sollte. Geiles Bier und unglaubliche Frittenvariationen. Habe eine sehr schöne Unterkunft und bin schon auf die morgigen 100 km gespannt.Read more

  • Day4

    Bitter Battles at Breakfast

    August 28, 2016 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

    Our 2016 European Odyssey Ride is actually a four part ride, the first section (or "Prologue") takes place between Bruges and Amsterdam. Our home for that first section is the aptly named Magnifique, a delightful and character filled timber barge. It can accommodate a maximum of 32 passengers and we have fully booked the entire boat for the Ghostriders. Since most of us have never done this sort of bike/barge option before, the first couple of days are obviously going to constitute something of a learning curve as we adapt to the particular challenges of living aboard a floating hotel.

    On arrival we were introduced to our Captain Roy. Someone pointed out that he looked about 14 years old (I guess we really are getting old, when even other old people start looking young). We also met Tom who was to be our cycling guide and resident comedian for the first section. Tom is a tall, skinny young (everyone is) Dutchman with a Shirley Temple hairdo. His first briefing included a complicated explanation of sequences of numbers like the Enigma Code of WWII fame. Since most of us were too tired to take any notice, we immediately decided that the best approach would be to completely ignore all the maps and instructions and just follow him instead.

    Our alarm went off at the usual time of 6 am and I was tempted to walk up and down the corridor, banging on all the doors. Surely they should all be awake by then ? Apparently they weren't. Some seem to be able to sleep for much longer periods of time, thus wasting the best part of the day.

    Breakfast was served at 8 am, an elaborate affair with starched white tablecloths and candelabra on every table (just like breakfast at home). We set down to dine on freshly squeezed orange juice, muesli, fruit, fresh bread, meat and a host of other treats. Ken obviously enjoyed the orange juice too much as he proceeded to fill an enormous beer glass to overflowing, thus almost emptying the entire carafe

    This behaviour caught the disapproving eye of Ingerbord (our ship’s manager).
    “Only one glass”, she reminded Ken.
    “Sorry”, Ken replied guiltily.
    “And by the way, where did you find that huge glass?”, she added.
    “In the big tray, behind the sink”, he answered.
    “They are the unwashed beer glasses from last night”, she informed him.
    Oh well we all make mistakes, we are old people after all.

    Part of the daily routine is for each person to make up their own picnic lunch from a variety of ingredients. The idea is to fill a bag with your selected choices and bring it with you on the ride. We all happily started filling the bags with bread rolls, fruit, drinks, etc. But that was where the trouble started.
    “I can’t find my lunch”, John started
    “I’ve forgotten where I put my bag, where is it ?”, someone else moaned.
    “Is that it ?”
    “No, I don’t fold the top like that”
    “Are you sure ?”
    “Why has (name removed) got my lunch ?”
    “It’s not your lunch, it’s mine”
    “(Name removed) has two lunches”
    “Your lunch is bigger than mine”
    “You didn’t really make an egg sandwich did you?”
    “Not in this weather”
    "That was your lunch, why are you eating it now?"
    "Was that lunch ?"
    “Is that your lunch, or mine ?”
    “Oh, perhaps that was mine all along, I can’t remember”
    And so it went on, and on and on.

    I suspect that this will be another part of every morning. It is not easy trying to travel with a group of people who are all rapidly hurtling into senility and perpetual forgetfulness.
    Somehow the lunches finally got sorted and we gathered with our bikes for the obligatory photoshoot before the ride itself got under way. We jostled for position alongside the boat, smiled to the camera and were finally ready to go.

    Everything went well for about 200 metres before Douglas (aka Lucky Lee) complained. Surely he couldn’t need coffee already? The rest of our large group waited while Tom examined Douglas’ bike. Apparently it had “gone all funny” and could not be ridden. A new bike was produced and we were finally underway.

    The first day’s ride was around 60 km and was a perfect introduction to this type of riding. For those who had not ridden the European style of bikes, they took some time to adapt to the upright posture and wide seats. “I’m not riding a ladies bike”, David moaned. “We all are”, I reminded him.

    The biggest danger we faced on these delightful bike paths was the real probability of being skittled by a Flying Flem on a road bike. Since there are no mountains here, the only way the local boy racers can get their thrills is by flying along the narrow bike paths at breakneck speed. Anyone in their way is in real danger of being knocked into the canal alongside. This danger is made worse by the fact that they never use their bells or warnings to let us know that they are racing up from behind. We hoped that they would all be back at work tomorrow and the paths would be much quieter.

    At least the weather was perfect – blue skies, a gentle wind and a temperature in the mid twenties. This was a huge contrast to the appalling day we had on the first day of our 2015 France Ride.

    The main highlight of the day’s ride was the impressive medieval city of Ghent. We had a couple of hours to explore the old city centre I was pleased that they had obviously heard of our arrival in the town and had planned some sort of special celebration and market to welcome us. We certainly didn’t disappoint them and our bright yellow jerseys meant that we easily stood out in the large crowd.

    Maggie and I joined with David and Carol, in search of Belgian chocolates and a cup of famous hot chocolate. We walked and walked but not a hot chocolate in sight. We got tired, but finally found a place promising the best hot chocolate in Ghent.

    We ordered our drinks and sat down to wait. Unfortunately the anticipation was better than the product. The drinks tasted more like hot milk than hot chocolate. It was a big letdown. We also took the opportunity to try out some little cone shaped treats which were being sold all over the city. Apparently they are a famous feature of Ghent and we were told that they tasted like wild berries.

    As we sat lamenting the hot chocolate we passed around the little purple treats, hoping that they would be really delicious. They weren’t.
    “They taste like jam”, I commented
    “Jam tastes better than these”, Carol added
    “I meant toe jam” I explained.
    We all burst out in hysterical fits of uncontrollable laughter, while everyone stared at the disgusting old people in the chocolate shop.
    “Perhaps we should do a runner”, I suggested
    “With these shirts we should be able to blend into the crowd”.
    We finally augmented our hot chocolates by adding our chocolates into the hot milk and stirring them in.

    The first day finished with another 10 km to our waiting boat. It was a relief to climb off the broad seat, lock the bikes and prepare for dinner. It really had been a great start and everyone did an amazing job.
    Read more

  • Day1

    Gent bei Nacht

    October 30, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 7 °C

    Nach einer etwa 5 Stunden langen Autofahrt sind wir im Dunklen in Gent angekommen. Obwohl die online Bewertungen gesagt haben dass Parkhaus wäre schwer zu finden, ging es trotzdem recht schnell. Unser Airbnb ist auch schnell gefunden und wir stellen fest dass es die perfekte Lage direkt neben der Altstadt hat. Unser Gastgeber versorgt und mit Tipps zu Restaurants und Bars, also stürzen wir uns direkt ins Getümmel. Die Altstadt ist wunderschön, mittelalterlich, mit Kanälen durchzogen und toll beleuchtet. Die Empfohlenen Fritten mit Bratensoße sind genau das richtige und wir machen es uns zur Aufgabe in den nächsten Tagen möglichst viele verschiedene der unglaublich vielen Biersorten zu probieren in dem kein Bier zweimal getrunken wird.Read more

  • Day2

    Spaziergang durch Gent

    October 31, 2019 in Belgium ⋅ ☀️ 5 °C

    Heute steht die Erkundung der Stadt mit ihren Sehenswürdigkeiten an, bevor es dann am Nachmittag weiter nach Brügge geht. Das Wetter ist auf unserer Seite, die Sonne lacht und es ist ein herrlicher wenn auch kalter Morgen. Bei Tag ist Gent noch schöner als bei Nacht. Wunderschöne alte Häuser entlang der Kanäle, mittelalterliche Kirchen und Burgen in der romantischen Fußgängerzone, einfach beeindruckend.
    Von unserem Gastgeber wissen wir, dass Gent die Heimat der besten belgischen Schokoladenmanufaktur und Patisserie ist. Der Betrieb wurde sogar mit einem Stern ausgezeichnet! Das lassen wir uns natürlich nicht entgehen und es ist wirklich ein sagenhaftes Geschmackserlebnis.
    Bevor wir uns auf den Weg nach Brügge machen, starken wir uns noch mit einem fantastischen, gesunden, uns sehr leckerem Essen direkt am Kanal in der Sonne.... Es könnte uns nicht besser gehen!
    Read more

  • Day3

    gent work in progress

    August 11, 2016 in Belgium ⋅ 🌧 14 °C

    Augustus een zomermaand? Niet tijdens onze fietstocht van Antwerpen naar Gent. Na een super spannend roltrapavontuur zijb we Lekker nat geregend tot op onze onderbroek. Gelukkig was ons Airbnb dik inorde en hadden we een romantische date in restaurant valentijn. Gent by night is wel super gezellig!Read more

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