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Janet’s Travel Diary

Friday, 18 Aug 2006

Location: Rotterdam, Netherlands

MapHey Everyone!

Well what an adventure Ive had! On Saturday afternoon Marije, Marije's Dad, a friend of her Dad, and I all packed out stuff into their tiny little car and drove up north to the state Friesland. After a VERY long struggle Marije and I sort of managed to set up our tent (we couldnt help that it was broken!!!). On Sunday morning we all got up at 5am to go WADLOPEN! Ok this will be a new concept for the Aussies, so here goes my attempt at trying to explain it: Along the northen coast of Holland are a few small islands and these islands protect the mainland from rough surf and because of this layers of sand and clay have been able to build up and during low tide it is possible to walk through these sand/clay layers (in dutch this stuff is called wadden and lopen means walk, get it now??). By 6am we were at the docks dressed in some very sexy, pink, fake converse which were actually too small for me (this will explain everything later on) so off we went. The first 30 min of the walk was pure mud (coming up at least to our calf muscles) and so after 10 min everyone was exhausted, its worse than jogging on wet sand! Slowly the mud turned into sand and soon we were walking along huge streches of sand in the middle of the sea! It was absolutely amazing, the mainland was a small stripe on the horizon and the sun was slowly rising giving everything a pink glow! At one stage we were asked to be quite for 1 min and all you could hear was the wind, the lapping of water and seagulls crying. After about 2 hours of walking along the sand we reached this massive channel that we had to cross! So we all balanced our bags on our heads and started to walk, and water got deeper and deeper until it was right up to our chests, some of the smaller people even had to swim across! But we made it across OK and our bags somehow managed to stay dry. We crossed a few more canals but none so deep as the first one. After about 3 hours of walking we finally touched dry land and the first thing I wanted to do was TAKE MY SHOES OFF!!!! This of course was easier said than done because they were caked in mud! But I finally got them off and ever since then Ive been hobbling around like a cripple because the backs of my heels are one big festering flesh wound! I'd show you a picture of them but this is a G rated webapge ;)

Ever since then I havent been doing much except sitting on mu butt because its too painful to walk! Luckily Im at my grandparents house now and they have no problem doing everything for me :) So no, there were no wild parties to celebrate my birthday this year! Guess I'll have to make up for that later!

Well from what Ive heard about back home you guys are enjoying exactly the same weather as us Europeans so that gives you an idea of how shitty the summer has turned! At the moment I cant go outside anyway so I guess its not that big a deal!

Hope all is well and until the next "adventure" (which will hopefully be less painful!)

xxxxx
Janet