Day 2: Strawberry vending!

Date: 23 September 2014
Route: Schoonhoven (NL) to Viersel (BE)
In the saddle: 10:30 – 19:00
Distance: 120 km ish

Didn’t have such a great sleep last night. Turns out tents aren’t all that soundproof and you literally hear every ant that moves! Still, having not camped in over 10 years, I think I faired pretty well. I did get bitten by something in the night which left a massive lump on the side of my face though!

Bug bite

Despite waking up at 07:30, I didn’t set off until 10:30! Everything just seemed to take so long – cooking breakfast (porridge with peanut butter), washing up, packing up all my things, etc. Definitely room for improvement here!

I had the first casualty of the trip this morning too…. my gps watch started continuously beeping as I set off, and a nothing I did could make it stop… except….

It turns out the steel frame of my bike is rather unforgiving when you use it as a mallet… Well there goes my distance monitor!

Unhappy Garmin

Another sunny morning, and I reached the Dutch town of Breda just in time for a late lunch of patat (chips) with sate sauce. Heaven. And another detailed study of the route ahead.

Nutritious lunch

In the afternoon I crossed into Belgium, and discovered some very wealthy people live on the border:

Big houses on the Belgium border!

I also discovered one of my now favourite things about Belgium – strawberry vending machines!

An absolute god-send for the hungry cyclist who has been snacking on nuts and dried fruit  all day for energy!

I almost ate the entire punnet there and then! I saved the last few for my campsite dinner, alas they didn’t travel well – must have been all those cobblestones. Which brings me on to a new discovered serious dislike:

img_1777

After a long day in the saddle, no biker wants to see a road made of these. Ever.

That evening I camped in a caravan park, for 9 Euros. There was no hot water though, so it was a very quick cold shower, dinner and then bed.