On the third day, due to the pain in my ankle, I travelled with the wagon. My dear friend J’s lippizaner mare was crippled, and so she travelled on the wagon, and helped out opening gates, and helping with the young Gypsy vanner for whom this was the first big trip. I had offered her to ride the Tarq for a while.
Tarq was still scared of the wagon. The wagon ready for departure!
J. holding the gypsy vanner: she actually had a tougher workout every day than anybody else on this trip!
Weird fungus growing on a tree
Lunchtime; with the wagon we had to take slightly less picturesque roads every now and then.
After lunch we rode through a couple of villages. A lot of people looked very disparaging at us. We were in the dutch ”Bible-belt”! All in black, women with a small white collar: It was sunday, The Day of the Lord, and we were riding!
Shame on us!!!!!
One man looked at us with a twinkle when his wife turned away. I’m never quite sure what you are supposed to do, besides going to church twice. It looked as if some people were taking a walk, perhaps that is allowed.
After crossing the Royal Forest, by a very boring road (that’s why it didn’t occur to me photographing it) we arrived at this night’s night quarters. A quite posh ”Equestrian Centre”.
Shall I tell you my new theory? The grottier the riding school, the nicer, more warmhearted, more friendly the people”
So we arrived, we were the first strangely enough, the owner showed us the meadow for the horses, and the small field where we were to put our tents and left!
Now this ”Equestrian Centre” had, of course, a very nice canteen, with good loos and showers, but it was Sunday and it was closed. What do they expect? We are a group of 16 people: We booked accommodations!!! We pay good money for accommodation!!!!!! And that’s it? a field, no showers? no loos? and no cover? (it was starting to rain)
Incredible! We complained, and they opened the canteen for us, but only until seven o’clock!
Not that I mind squatting behind a tree very much, but I think it’s rather rich accepting a booking of sixteen people and just leave them with nothing but a field. Needless to say we’re never going to stay there again!
The tents. The very small light-green one on the right is mine. A member of our association lived nearby and had made an enormous quantity of pasta, the parents of another traveler came to bring us drinks, chips and cookies, and we had a window of about two hours to sit on the terrace and eat before it started raining again.
In the evening we sat chatting on some bales of straw drinking soft drinks and nibbling cookies and chips, and we had a very good time.
At night a real storm blew over! My tent kept being shaken from left to right! But I was so tired I fell asleep anyway.
Until I woke up on the hard ground because my sleeping mat had sprung a leak!