Vlaardingen, Netherlands

I left Keukenhof and randomly chose what some of us call aires, or stellplatz, or sostas. They’re dedicated parking areas for motorhomes all over the continent, Sometimes they have water and toilet emptying facilities, sometimes with electric, sometimes with absolutely nothing just a parking spot.

Some charge €2 and some charge up to €20, I never pay more than €5 because I mostly use them for water and emptying my toilet and I can fill my tanks pretty much anywhere, so a fiver is worth it to empty the toilet. Any more than that and I may as well pay for a full site.

The one I chose was only a few miles away and was a bare parking space in a town called Vlaardingen. It turned out to be a good choice as it’s a gorgeous little town with every amenity you could wish for. The parking spot was right next to the canal and there was some lovely boats on the water, many that people live in. It had a 48 hour limit on it which was fine and day 2 was 31 degrees!

Is this a giant! Or am I being Quixotic.

A windmill
The first windmill I’ve seen since I come to the Netherlands.

After work we went out for a good walk around and I spotted my very first windmill since coming to the Netherlands. I was a teeny bit excited and it was much bigger than I imagined them to be. It had been turned into a museum and was slap bang in the middle of a housing estate. 

One thing I’ve noticed about the Netherlands is that pretty much everywhere you go is clean. The Dutch clearly take pride in where they live and they look after their own homes and the areas around them. It’s very nice to see.

On my last night in Vlaardingen I heard a loud bang and looked outside to see a blazing car. The bang must have been one of the tyres exploding. It was very well ablaze and right next to another car and a building. 

Call the fire brigade!

I called the emergency services (113 in Europe) and was pleased to note they spoke English on request. They passed me through to the fire service who also spoke good English. A car on fire

Another tyre exploded before they arrived but it was dealt with within 2 minutes. Nice to see services in another country in action just to see how they compare. They were very swift and competent. 

Anyway that was the excitement over with and I’m leaving Vlaardingen tomorrow. It’s been a lovely visit but I’m moving off to Germany methinks.

This should be fun because there are many, many cities in Germany that disallow access to any vehicle below Euro 4. Mine’s Euro 3. I’m hoping there are plenty of Park and Rides around. 

Environmentally friendly

The Dutch fire service dealing with a burning carI am very much in support of controlling polluting vehicles but the simple act of banning them from cities and/or charging extra money to use them isn’t I think a great response. It’s a big swindle in fact if you ask me. 

Develop better engines and cleaner fuels if you want to move on.

Here’s a few photos from the town of Vlaardingen.

 

 

 

 

 

No heating for me!

After about 7 months without using the fire it was finally cold enough to put it on and guess what? yeah…it’s bust! It wasn’t even making an attempt to stay alight so i thought the thermo-couple might be bust. I found a place called Caravan Clinic in Gateshead so it’s booked in there for next Monday. I hope it’s not cold this week!

Rouen is ruined

Emergency lights
Emergency lights

I’ve decided to leave Rouen at the weekend.  I’ll sort the photos out later.

I can’t put up with the constant sirens anymore. It’s every single day without fail, throughout the entire day.

There was a period where sirens were sounding continuously for over 20 minutes. I’ve seen emergency vehicles pass each other going in the opposite direction to each other with sirens going and blue lights flashing.

It’s 95% fire vehicles and although I have never seen a fire, I have never seen a fire vehicle being driven without sirens or lights, so I assume there is a policy that when being driven, even if they are just going to the post office, they use sirens and lights. It’s the only explanation.

I quite like Rouen but this policy if that’s what it is, has ruined Rouen for me and I can’t wait to get back to some peace and quiet.