DAY 5 and DAY 6

12-13 September 2018 – Netherlands and Germany

Brussels to Maastricht to Prum

Getting out of Brussels was another hideous and slow drive followed by boring straight roads interspersed with small dull towns. We tried taking country roads, but were thwarted as every one we took petered out into a dead end or a cycle path. Like clockwork, Bharat announced the tuk tuk counted as a bicycle and soldiered on but even he had to turn back eventually.

The drive was significantly livened up when Rachel spotted lots of rotating manequins in the shop windows, but Amy quickly corrected her – they were actually real-life semi-naked gyrating women advertising “Finding Love” amongst other things…

Twenty minutes later and many a window later, we stopped in Lieges for a quick lunch before eventually arriving in Maastricht to stay with (yet another) Vanhoonacker! The charming Sophie and Bernard kindly gave us some comfy beds and Bernard treated us to a gourmet homemade meal. Amy saw some stroopwafels in the drawer when helping wash up and very unsubtly said how much she loved them – we now have the box in the car!

 

Town Hall in Leuven

The drive to Prum started after Bharat arrived back from Brussels…see Hero of the Hour.The day was very rainy and cold which meant that, after a good stint in the back, we put the sides of the tuktuk down to thaw frozen limbs and attempt to keep spirits high. We hopped from Aachen to Monschau which was a beautiful drive through rolling hills – the countryside in the Netherlands and Germany undoubtedly beats that of Belgium…

We drove through a misty forest with strikingly tall, thin trunked trees which made Sumo look tiny! On arriving at the campsite Amy and James set up the tents with Bharat and Rachel having their two pennies at the end. The tent Rachel and Bharat brought is palatial, particularly when compared the one and a quarter man tent given to James and Amy by James’ parents for the trip – we are yet to pull straws on who’s in the tent and who’s in the tuktuk…

 

Sumo arrives in Monschau, Germany

 

On the way to Maastricht

Rach finally works out how to switch her camping headlamp on!

Sponsor for Netherlands: Unique Home Stays

The UK’s most luxury and unique self catering cottages and large homes. We definitely wish we were staying in one of their beautiful houses rather than our campsite! http://uniquehomestays.com

 

 

No Unique Home Stays luxury today for us!

Tuk Tuk Trivia:

  • Number of people James has spoken to in German: 1 (accuracy yet to be verified…)
  • Number of times Bharat took a wrong turn: 4
  • Number of times James burped at the table with our hosts?: 1 (and one too many)

Smells of the Day:

  • Day 5: More cow dung and a very fishy smell at the Belgian/Netherlands border…
  • Day 6: Cinnamon – a particular village in Germany, which clearly is gearing up for Christmas already and making a lot of Zimtsterne!

National Drink: Jenever, a cherry flavoured liqueur which Rach declared was like cough mixture – 2/10

Dunce of the Days:

  • Day 5: Rachel: Kept trying to put coins in the notes slot of parking machine (Amy and James were wetting themselves laughing at Bharat’s pained “Oh for goodness sakes” across the car park) AND left all her jewellery in Brussels…(however, she was closely followed by James who not only burped at our hosts table (see above), but swilled the wine in his glass to look sophisticated and promptly doused the table with some of the Alsace’s nicest Riesling!).
  • Day 6: Paul and Jacqueline Hewitt (James’ parents) for donating a one man tent for James and Amy to sleep in.

Hero of the Hour: Bharat who got up at 6am and drove all the way back to Brussels to retrieve Rach’s jewellery, which he did without complaining once, which is very unusual!

Sulker of the Day: Amy, who discovered Bharat & Rachel had brought REAL PILLOWS after telling her and James that there was no room.

Interesting fact about Belgium: There is very high stamp duty, there is no capital gains tax on property and no inheritance tax – something for us to bring back home!

Aachen

 

Monschau

Maastricht