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15th September 2008 - Deja Vu In Zierikzee

For this weekend, we took some extra days off work (Friday & Monday) and made a long weekend of it. We took the 8.00 am ferry on Friday morning, arriving at the boat at midday. We then just spent the rest of Friday relaxing and headed off to Zierikzee on Saturday morning, arriving there early afternoon.

When we arrived the Havenmeester directed us to raft on to a Bavaria Mobo (29 Foot). This in itself was not a problem. The problem was that fore & aft, they were already rafted 4 deep and we going in as the 2nd boat in a raft. Or in other words, bloody difficult to get in. Kim got the bow in okay and then the Havenmeester called out to ask if we wanted a "nudge" to get the stern in. Kim's not proud! So the Havenmeester used the soft bow of his RIB to push us in - not very elegant but highly effective!.

We finished the evening up as no. 2 out in a raft of 7. That is the busiest we have ever seen Zierikzee. The view from the back of Emjaytoo - nothing but boats!

We then went out for a meal, going to a restaurant we had visited last year (Brasserie Maritieme). After last year's fiasco, we went armed with every conceivable Dutch/UK/international payment card - only to find that, when we came to pay, their machine was out of order! However, once again the proprietor was very laid back about it all and we agreed to call in with the cash in the morning.

On Sunday morning, it all quietened down as other boats left and we ended up having the pontoon to ourselves.

As we had a bit of time to spare on Sunday and the weather was rather magnificent (even, if a bit windy), we went for a walk - to go to the cash machine for starters! Of course Zierikzee still looks the same - classic little gable ended houses, facing on to the quay side.

The trip back Sunday afternoon was sunny and breezy. At one point we were motoring up to the bridge in 22 knots of wind on the nose. It was very bumpy, with waves occasionally breaking over the bow - what we both love! Once through the bridge, we got the sails up and enjoyed a leisurely sail back to the Zandkreeksluis. Kim sitting back and leaving the Autohelm to do the hard work.

Once through the lock, we were on a dead run back to the marina in, now, moderating winds and we got the opportunity to try out the newly purchased whisker pole, which worked a treat.

Back in the marina, we settled down to celerbrate our home coming in the normal way.

We then had a relaxed afternoon, well Wendy did - Kim worked like a Trojan (or so he says!), cleaning the boat (after which, of course, Wendy produced dinner out of thin air!).

Monday morning - a very easy start and then back to Dunkerque for the ferry. In spite of miscalculating by an hour, we made it to Dunkerque for the 16:00 ferry, which meant we were back home by quarter to six, which was great.

Another great weekend over 'til the next one!


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