Monday riding to Delft, Hague

Every day is another amazing window that opens on green countryside, dikes, canals, tunnels, city streets with bike lanes clearly marked with reddish pavement and stripped, intersections that have signals for vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists, cars that more likely than not give way to cyclists (Doesn’t mean you can ignore all the trolleys and vehicle, car drivers are aggressive so you need to be decisive when riding as well) and then there are the old town squares, shops and cafes, churches, giant cobbled plazas, as I told Bushy, we live in a whole different world back home.

Today started with a typical great euro breakfast, meat, cheese, breads, yogurt, boiled egg, coffee, whew! Good fueling for an upcoming ride. We needed to collect the commuter bikes from the rail station after last nights transit screw up, Hans giving us a ride to the station and we rode them back.

It’s been nice to have Hans around, he is very willing to share his Dutch knowledge with us, we just ask and he opens up all about the area. We find out that he and Margit are traveling to the south today so this is the last we will see of them. Our plan to ride to Hague gets a minor modification as Hans tells us about a town named Delft that has tons of history. It’s basically along the route to Hague so easy to do.

Bushy and I both got Dutch Sims for our phones when we first got here, good idea. I have already used up the first data purchase. There is an app though and topping up is easy to do. Google maps will be our guide today. Out comes the phone bike mount I bought in Brussels so I can watch the map and ride easier. Smarter today, I’m bringing a spare battery for my phone to keep things alive during a long day.

North and west, into the wind, we ride, about 30 kilometers to Delft and then another 9 or 10 to Hague. Out through the city of Rotterdam into the countryside along the canals, through some farm and livestock areas and then we come to the amazing town of Delft. Time for a little lunch break at the base of this huge old church. It reminds me of Ghent with all the canals running through the town but it is even more wonderful with a beautiful picture around every corner. And then we find this giant plaza with more great old buildings and churches. People are starting to come out everywhere, Easter Monday is a holiday here. OK, enough, we need to move on. Hague comes up not long after but it is of course a huge city. A bit over whelming. Time to turn Google off and just wander. After Delft, it’s not quite as impressive but I think I’m in picture overload right now. I take a few but again, there is a shot every direction you look in this older but modern center of the town. I think we both realize we are only going to see a tiny portion of Hague. We are on bikes though so the views are quite intimate compared to being in a car or on transit.

Time to turn around and enjoy the tail wind back, Google adjustments so we don’t go through Delft on the way back makes the ride a little shorter plus we get to see parts of Rotterdam we haven’t seen yet. Both of us are getting hungry, our food stop in Hague didn’t happen. It’s almost 5 P.M. and almost everything around is closed and we have no food at the house. We are about to give up when we find a local bar and cafe that has lights on and people inside. Excellent, in we go and enjoy the locals and the dog that is sitting on the bar as the boss. Dinner is done, back to the house, getting a little lost  along the way, getting cold and a putting up with a little rain. Relax and time for Netflix. Tomorrow, Amsterdam by train and then a bike ride back.