Hello again! Now I am sitting in the Sixhaven marina in the center of Amsterrdam. Position 52°22.5’N 004°54,2’E
I sailed away from Lemmer on Thursday morning and got a fine sail down to the sluices at Enkhuizen. A good few boats are out, but the IJsselmeer lake is huge and there is plenty of room to navigate. Get the windvane to steer and the sun comes out along the way. Great to finally be sailing with all the sails up. Get to the sluices just after lunchtime. It is warm (27°C) and the wind dies down a good bit after the sluices. I motorsail down to the little harbour at Wijdenes, where I will be getting some company. I visit the Church of Wijdenes, where my brother in law runs a music studio. He is a producer and musician. Isabell is anchored just outside the harbour, since the harbour is very tiny and there are lots of people bathing and celebrating the sun. I take a bike ride through the countryside on Friday, and after that we take a super nice sailing round of the Markermeer. Reyn and Cloutilde are enjoying the sail as much as I am. They were afraid that I would be tired of sailing by now. No way! It’s great.
Then I dropped them off at Wijdenes and continued alone to the town of Hoorn, where I went in to the Grashaven, a super nice marina just outside the old town. This town is a must see. Surprise, surprise, the boat spot I was appointed to is right next to two (TWO) other Monsuns. The folks are on their boats and we have a nice chat. Here we are, Isabell in the company of Thalia (#716) and Pelagos (#706). In this same harbour also Monsun Pandorak 2 has its berth, but she’s not in the harbour.
After a good rest and some early morning shopping and sightseeing, my sister Lisette joins me at the dock. She took the train here, and will follow along on our sail to Amsterdam. We leave just before lunch, the sun disappears behind a haze and some clouds, but it is still warm.
We sail with a full sail setting and get to Amsterdam way ahead of the schedule I set. I had missed that there are a bridge and sluice to cross before Amsterdam. Luckily we got the fenders out and some lines just in time for pulling through the well-filled sluices. We got through very smoothly. And then we motored into the center of the city. Crowded as ever, but there is a berth in Sixhaven harbour. It is close to everything, and a good place to sit to wait for the night time convoy through the bridges of Amsterdam.
We take the ferry (free of charge) into town and go for dinner somewhere. At the Central Station we are picked up by the police. Actually is my brother in law who works for the Amsterdam police force. He takes us on a private tour through the city center, driving across tram tracks, over the Dam square and Rembrandt plein. Lots of people, since this week was supposed to be Pride Festival week here. Although it is cancelled, the people are here. We go out and eat on the Zeedijk and then my sister takes the train home. I take the ferry back to Isabell. What a wonderful day it has been.
Today my other sister will come aboard and follow along to Leiden. Her partner will join us through the Amsterdam canals, since he has been a water policeman here in the town and knows the routine. I am going to do some shopping and rest a bit until this evenings event. The night time sails through the Amsterdam canals. Cheers!