Saturday in Rotterdam

This is the nicest of all the Air BnB places will have this week. The other two were special in their own way, Brussels, inner city, close to all the upscale action, pleasant host and centrally accessible to lots of the places we needed to get to during that week, Luci’s place in Lille, quaint, old, family are of the town. Very “regional” and an interesting look into normal family life in a big city. Now we are outside of Rotterdam along the rail lines, 2 to 3 stops south of Rotterdam Central station staying in an old church administration building that has been remodeled graciously with 3 suites added in to the 2nd and 3 floor of an old building. The owners, Margit and Hans are retired and very attentive to our needs. We’ve already ridden around of some of the old clunky upright bicycles that everyone around here seems to ride. No big wire baskets on our bikes though like everyone else has on theirs. No helmets, no clip in pedals and casual ride to the local stores and restaurant for dinner. Best internet WiFi of the trip, nice to have for stuff like email access, Facebook, uploading bike data and doing blog entries.

It’s Easter week-end, Saturday, up later for a wonderful full breakfast, eggs, fresh breads, yogurt, cheese and meat selections, great coffee, wonderful start to a big ride day. Hans is nice enough to ride along for a while to get us started at the local bike shop so Bushy can get some warmer ride wear, the temps have gotten slightly cooler and significant overcast skies in the forecast for our stay here. I’ve been quizzing Hans along the way about his history here, which is basically all his life and he is my same age. Plus trying to understand how all the bike routes work, they are everywhere and the car drivers are even more attentive to cyclists then the Belgium drivers.

Off on our own, cool and windy. There are canals and dikes everywhere and before we know it we are entering a massive tunnel that goes under a major waterway that has local container ships traveling above us. Bushy and I get separated by accident again so we are on separated group ride for today. We both travel similar paths for at least the first half of the ride. I try to find my way back making a loop, Bushy doing and out and back. His choice probably being the wisest. I finally give in and have to use Google Maps to get me back to the bike store where we started and then back close to the BnB. Amazingly enough, I make a turn, still kind of lost and Google is not helping much when I look up to see Bushy riding toward me. 3 plus hours of riding and fate brings us together at the end of the ride so we can grab some late lunch before returning to the room.

Tomorrow, off the bike, on the train to watch the finish laps of the 3rd of 4 Monuments of the Spring Classic bike races, Amstel Gold.