Sunday, May 20, 2018

Blauw-Geel Champions

Sunday, 20-May-2018 - Veghel - My nephew Gilbert (photo) and his team Blauw Geel '38/Jumbo 12 became league soccer champions today when they beat Heeswijk 5 5-1.  They had two more games to play, but they could no longer be touched.  I got to the stadium just before half-time--much too late to see Gilbert's opening goal.  He was substituted at halftime, and he had already showered when the final whistle was blown.  The celebration started right after the trophy was presented to the team captain.  pics (124)

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Vat-Oe-Fiets 2018

Thursday, 10-May-2018 - Veghel - In addition to being my son-in-law Aaron's birthday, it's Ascension Day and the 50th Vat-Oe-Fiets (grab your bike) bicycle tour.  It's a tradition in Veghel.  Saw a lot of smiling faces.  Video-chatted with my grandson Logan in Nova Scotia along the way.  He had an important question to ask me.  It was great to be alive and outside today!  This year the route took us through the Maashorst Nature Reserve (photo).  If I hadn't missed a turn, I wouldn't have seen a glider fly overhead and land, and a field worker wave back to me.  Magnificent route, magnificent weather!  Thanks to all the volunteers who made this wonderful day happen.  I was good for 62 km (including getting to and from the starting point, and missing a turn).  pics (174)
gps tracked route

Monday, May 7, 2018

Langenboom Windsurfing

Sunday, 5-May-2018 - Langenboom - Marij said, " Let's go to Langenboom."  So we did.   Wim helped me get my sail rigged.  My wet suit was a little snug.  It took me awhile to get it on.  What a great day on the water!  pics (30)

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Last Day Skating at Aa-broeken

Saturday, 3-March-2018 - Veghel - Winter gave us a soft snowy kiss goodbye last night.  After cleaning the driveway, I headed to the Aa-broeken for the last time this season.  I took my show shovel with me to help keep the hockey rink clear.  pics (73)

Friday, March 2, 2018

Aa-broeken Ice Hockey

Friday, 2-March-2018 - Veghel - Arjen and I were happy to see each other on the ice.  He asked me to join in on hockey game.  I told him I couldn't play very well.  He said I could be the goalie.  It was reds against the rest--10 against 10.  We won 4-1.  I made four saves.  I felt 20 years younger!  What a great day on ice!  pics (28)

Thursday, March 1, 2018

Junior Aa-broeken Hockey on Thin Ice

Thursday, 01-March-2018 - Veghel - I forgot to dry off my skates yesterday--a terrible sin.  I rubbed the blades with a just cloth and some vaseline.  I didn't want to ruin the edges with a stone or sand paper.  I headed for the Aa-broeken after grocery shopping.  I could see the women's Olympic ice hockey had made an impression on these young players.  Even though another adult broke through the ice today.  The thin ice didn't spoil the chance for these young players to practice their skills and have fun.  (pics 41)

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Aa-broeken Pond Not Yet Safe for Skating

Wednesday, 28-February-2018 - Veghel - Jan and I agreed to meet at the Aa-broeken pond around 1100.  As I entered the path to the pond, I met a group of bundled-up childcare toddlers.  They had just been on the ice with their babysitters.  I just had said hi to Mieke H, and I was chatting with Desiree as I was putting on my skates. Just as I was about to go onto the ice, a man fell through directly across from us.  He pulled himself out out of the icy water and made it to the edge.  Desiree walked around the pond with my jacket to keep him warm.  He turned it down and made his way home. Jan I made a few rounds before deciding not to press out luck.  The ice was cracking under my skates, even in the center on the west side of the pond where I expected it to be the thickest.  Green plants under the ice soaked up the sun so it was only about 3-4 cm thick.  After I got off the ice, I walked around the pond with Mieke vE and Jan before heading home myself.  This pond is not safe for skating! pics (27)

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Thin Ice at Aa-broeken Skating Pond

Tuesday, 27-February-2018 - This morning, I met Arjen and Angelique at the Aa-broeken skating pond.  They also wanted to skate as soon as it was safe. They walked with me as I inspected the ice from the bank. Three to five centimeters--one centimeter thicker since yesterday.  They decided to come back tomorrow and check again.  I came back in the afternoon to see young children sliding on the ice under the watchful eye of their mother.  She relayed to me that another child had just fell through thin ice on the other side of the pond.  It happened about 20 meters from the edge (photo).  His mother had helped him out of the ice-cold water, and she already took him home to dry off and warm up.  This was the thinnest spot on the pond--it was the last spot to freeze over.  The sun had melted the ice--it was now only one centimeter thick!  pics (32)

Monday, February 26, 2018

Aa-broeken Ice Mirror

Monday, 26-February-2018 - Veghel - It was an ice mirror at the Aa-broeken skating pond--two to four centimeters thick. pics (38)

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Ice Cover at Aa-broeken Pond

Saturday, 24-February-2018 - Veghel - I got excited when I saw a thin sheet of ice covering more than half the pond. pics (30)
Aa-broeken Ice Forming Despite Wind (30 sec)

Friday, February 23, 2018

Open Water at Aa-broeken Skating Pond

Friday, 23-February_2018 - Veghel - Colder weather and skating ice are forecast for next week. Players on my volleyball team are looking forwarding to playing some ice hockey. I went to the Aa-broeken skating pond to see the progress. There, I found open water with ice just starting to form at the far end of the pond (photo).  pics (42)
ice forecast at