Last weekend, it was a certain person's birthday - as if all his FB followers hadn't sussed that one out! So, I thought that while we were on the subject of Beatles' songs, he who is now 64 should be taken on a Magical Mystery Tour. Hence it was that last Friday morning, I presented said gentleman with three envelopes, each of which contained a destination: one in the north, one in the east and one in the south.
Koos, as indeed that's who it was, chose to go east, so I quickly arranged everything necessary to make sure the mystery was crowned in comfort, and off we set on Saturday morning - to the east. The first stop was at Cuijk, where, being drawn irrevocably to all things watery, we wandered along the banks of the mighty Maas in the sunshine.
Next stop (again, typically for us) was Grieth on the banks of the redoubtable Rhine. The day was just perfect, but as always, the current on the Rhine was strong and we watched the ferry that takes cyclists and tractors (well that's what it looked like) fight its way across the river, bouncing around apparently without control, but always making it to exactly the right spot. Drunk with coffee and sunshine (see? So innocent we are), we headed back to our destination for the night in the charming town of Goch.
As I said, it's charming, and I was particularly taken by this lovely water mill as well as one of the most gorgeous houses I have seen in a while. I gazed wistfully over the fence and thought how very happy the owners must be. It is on the banks of the river Niers and everything looks tended with both love and a feel for atmosphere, grace and comfortable informality.
In the evening we walked round the fair which was going on in town before having dinner at a very nice local restaurant. Koos's photos of the fair attractions have already received their due attention on Facebook. It was a lovely evening and we finished it with a glass of wine on the roof garden of the small hotel where we stayed.
Sunday meant we had to start back home, but not before we stopped at yet another beautiful waterside. This photo was taken in Nijmegen It looks like the perfect place to moor, that is until you see the high water poles. Then you realise it might get a bit hectic in times of heavy rain. Still, it was a lovely end to a lovely excursion, and judging by Koos's beaming smile, it was worth the mystery!