Thursday, 17 August 2006


We arose at 08h00. It would have been easy to sleep longer... much longer, but I was conscious that we were on the fuel pontoon univited, so didn't wan't to cause any problems. As it happens things went well. 15 minutes after we arose, a boat came looking for fuel. The Harbourmaster came over in his tender, and was perfectly OK with us being on the fuel pontoon... he understood... The Dutch are a nation of sailors! The fuel pontoon, in the daylight was a lot longer than I thought, and we didn't have to depart, instead, just shuffled forwards, and the boat slipped in behind us. When he had refuelled, I did thesame, paid my night's fees, and then we tidied up. By 10h00, we slipped, and made our way around to the first of the opening bridges, and after waiting 20 minutes were let through into the Walcheren canal on our way towards Middelburg. Its a remarkable thing. The contrast between the crude dock area inside the lock, and after the bridge that permits entry into the canal is enormous. The bridges opens, and takes you into a tree lined boulevard, that is pretty, quiet, and very relaxing.... pootling along at a pleasant 2kts, we made our way through a number of various bridge types, some lifting, some turning, until, in less than an hour and a half, we turned to port into Middelburg. Middelburg is picture postcard pretty. You round into a town centre, and are faced with an elegant white bridge of almost victorian style. The holding pontoon is immediately to the right, and we are tied up, and allocated a berth in just a few minutes. The bridge opens on the half hour, so we only have to wait 20 mins before being let through into a lovely little marina, with long rows of box moorings. SWMBO is nervous. Our first experience of a proper box, only ever before having moored bow to with a pick up line or buoy... however, we slipped deftly in, with no dramas. A nice Dutch guy comes to grab our bow lines, the ready prepared stern lines drop smartly over the posts, and we are secure in no time, and sorted. We have decided to have the rest of the day in Middelburg, and all of the following day, and then leave Friday morning for Veerse Meer. More to come!

Miles logged 3nm
Miles logged this trip 113nm
Miles this season 522nm
Miles since this blog started 1,303nm

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