Thursday, May 29, 2014

Vat-oe-fiets goes Maashorst

Thursday, 29-May-2014 - Veghel - It's Hemelvaart (Ascension Day).  Chris had a baseball game, so I went this year on my own.  Vat-oe-fiets (Grab your bike) is Veghel's yearly bike tour.  Funds go to missionary work.  Every year is a delightful surprise.  Saw familiar faces.  This year the route took us into the Maashorst Nature Reserve (photo).  I rode an extra 10 km, because I missed the turnoff at Route 66.  I was good for 64 km.  pics  (141)
gps-tracked route part 1
gps-tracked route part 2

post 1 fanfare band (26 sec)
family bicycling (17 sec)
vorstenbosch windmill windlust (32 sec)

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Late Memorial Day

Wednesday, 28-May-2014 - Veghel - Memorial Day was on Monday.  Those who gave their life for the cause of freedom deserve to be remembered.
President Obama's address and Arlington National Cemetery, 27-May-2014 (16:04)
full text
"...The fallen patriots we memorialize today gave their last full measure of devotion.  Not so we might mourn them, though we do.  Not so that our nation might honor their sacrifice, although it does.  They gave their lives so that we might live ours -- so that a daughter might grow up to pursue her dreams; so that a wife might be able to live a long life, free and secure; so that a mother might raise her family in a land of peace and freedom.  Everything that we hold precious in this country was made possible by Americans who gave their all.  And because of them, our nation is stronger, safer, and will always remain a shining beacon of freedom for the rest of the world. 
May God bless the fallen and all those who serve.  May God watch over their families.  And may God continue to bless the United States of America." 

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Missed Memorial Day

Tuesday, 27-May-2014 - Veghel - I was embarrassed to realize that I missed Memorial Day yesterday--no flag, no moments of silence and reflection.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Skating Fun for Two

Saturday, 24-May-2014 - Veghel - Astrid and I were good for 17 km. Wind in our faces, blue sky, white clouds, colorful flowers.  What a great skate! pics (58) gps-tracked route

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Skeet Shooting in Boekel

Sunday, 18-May-2014 - Boekel - Today we went to six-time Olympian Eric Swinkels Shooting Range.  This was my first-ever visit to a skeet range. I was overwelmed with the professional range and instruction.  The "rabbit" station really got me excited.  Boyhood memories of December rabbit hunting in Michigan with my Uncle Paul rushed through me.  I got a 20-gauge single-shot Stevens for my 13th birthday (and Christmas) present. Paul always said, "One shot is all you need.  If it takes more than one shot to shoot an animal, you don't deserve it."  Guus was our shooting instructor for today.  We all used the same 12-guage over-and-under Baretta with 7.5 steel shot.  Chris took this picture of me--he also took the first place medal. Seven Marc's Bar BQ Volleyball players--good for 175 shells, 110 hits.  pics (198)
video clip by hans dG (24 sec)

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Fun-on-Wheels Saturday Skating

Saturday, 17-May-2014 - Veghel - Astrid and I rode our bikes to the Sligro meeting point. Tonnie joined us.  We wanted to see the new bicycle bridge across the Zuid-Willemsvaart canal (photo).  At one point Astrid and Tonnie landed in the grassy shoulder next to the bicycle path. I had just fallen over a stick.  That left a nasty scrape.  All in all it was good skating.  We were good for 16 km. Pics (31) gps-tracked route--part 2

Thursday, May 15, 2014

De Toren Skaters Back in Action

Thursday, 15-May-2014 - Dinther - Ad drove by happily announcing he was a grandfather, and that everyone was healthy and doing okay.  It was three weeks since our last skate.  We headed for Uden.  We stopped at the new Van der Valk Hotel for our coffee break.  We took a short tour of the hotel before heading back to Dinther.  Saw a fantastic sunset.  Eight De Toren skaters--good for 30 km. pics (85)

Wednesday, May 14, 2014


Wednesday, 14-May-2014 - Den Bosch - It's Katherine's birthday today!  Marij and I went to the Dutch international flower and plant exhibition, the Floralën.  In addition to the many displays, we got to see the last 15 min of the Dutch Flower Arrangement Championship. Twelve professional florists competed.  They had one hour to create their masterpiece.  Dini Holtrop (34) was this year's winner (photo).  When I saw them work, I thought of Katherine and Therese. After the exibition, we had dinner at Grand Cafe Silva Ducis Pizzeria near the St Jan Cathedral. pics (260)

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Tuesday Evening Skating in Boekel

Tuesday, 13-May-2014 - Boekel - As I was making supper, I realized, that after eight days, the rain had stopped, the sun was shining, and the street was dry.  I quickly checked the weather forecast--no rain until tonight.  It was 10 days since I had my skates on.  Hes joined us for the first time to see what it was like.  At the 6 km-point Jan and Hes headed back to the starting point.  Twelve road kilometers on inline hockey skates is pretty darn good.  Well done, Hes!  The other 10 skaters--were good for at least 20 km--five took an extra loop. pics (54)
gps-tracked route--part 2

Monday, May 5, 2014

Dutch Liberation Day

Monday, 5-May-2014 - It's Dutch Liberation Day (Bevrijdingsdag) today.   flag pics (12)

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Remembrance Day

Sunday, 4-May-2014 - Veghel - Freedom isn't free.  The Dutch Flag is flying at half-mast today to remember that.  At 2000, everyone in the Netherlands observed two minutes of silence.  This year, Marij joined other Veghel citizens at the Airbourne Monument to remember. Pics (27)