Den Helder is a quiet town/village that seems to run on bicycle power. Everywhere one looks there are people riding bikes. Not that many cars out so very peaceful to walk around and enjoy especially after coming off the boat and not dealing with traffic for an extended length of time.
And then there are the canal boats (both sailboats and barge type boats) that people are living on that one walks by.
One of the big projects to complete before the last race. Jill, Kat and Regina preparing to sew the taped areas (the entire luff and then the section where the head and body of sail parted) after the task of taping all areas of repair. Lucky for us Sean had already laid out the kite and taped the head tear. Sewing the head back on was interesting as one had to roll the excess kite to allow the part needing to be sewed through the machine. The area between the body of the machine and the needle gets to be pretty crowed as the roll gets larger. Very interesting. Yes, I was on this duty also.
A very special treat was meeting another Dahmen brother, Maarten and his wife Laurance. While at their home I was treated to a meal of Rijsttafel which is a Dutch Indonesian meal. And that is not all I was treated with.
Laurance plays Bass Flute (I call it Bass Recorder) and also the Tenor, Alto and Soprano. While I was there, some friends of hers came by for their usual get together and I was treated to an enjoyable concert. Really wonderful time. Maarten and I also took a stroll through their town of Alkmaar with its history dating way back to the 10th century and being known for its traditional cheese market. Then an ice cream treat.
To end the fun day, guess what.
And of course while we were there, there was a weekend of festival with music and entertainment. These towns have a love for drumline entertainment. Also community pep bands appeared as well as singers with their backup bands. Live entertainment from noon until 9pm with numerous food and drink booths.
While there I found a wonderful café to both eat at and work on uploading pictures and getting some blogs done. The best though was the quote above, the euphonium on the wall and the area of the wall dedicated to jazz. Loved this place! and their apple pie was outstanding. No picture of that as it did not last long enough when served.
And for my friends that like birds, here are a few pictures especially for you.
Then I was privileged to see another SAILability program. This young lady had just finished her solo sail and was then hoisted back into her chair. I asked if she had a fun time and I believe the smile tells the answer. I even got to see some of the clients race around the harbor.
Interesting sights included this old sewing machine and this sign I found funny as it goes with the question most asked during our visits to other countries. “Is Trump really running for president?” This is not intended as a political statement on my part, just an interesting moment on my journey.
Our maintenance dream team planning their day and Jo waiting patiently for the next floorboard to come back into the sail locker.
Most of our Around the World Crew. Alex, Elaine, Ryan (actually did not do leg 7), Mike (was with us leg 1 &2 then was not allowed to continue on leg 3 due to sickness and when we arrived at Albany we discovered that he had been transferred to Garmin), Han, Kat (was on Mission Performance legs 1 to 4 and then transferred to us for legs 5 to 8) and then me! Justin and Sean were not there for the picture. One happy group.
Preparing to leave with an unusual message during our crew brief. Han working with our South Korean correspondent “Sue” who made the final journey with us.
And I finish this with a long view of my last Rigger duty up the mast. I will miss this job as I loved getting to go up. I wish I had a video of the last hoist up as the guys decided not to use the winches to grind me up there slowly but instead “sweat” me up. That meant they physically hoisted me up by pulling the halyard themselves. It also meant that I was at the top in about 10 seconds as opposed to several minutes. A little bouncy and jerky, but What a ride!!!
What fun it has been to be the rigger on the boat and the things that I have learned in the process. WHOPEE! the thrill of a lifetime.
And for you detailed people, yes we did make sure all halyards were not tangled and then to walk the starboard spin halyard around the front of forestay to place in its resting spot.
And so it goes, ready for the last race and final race of the journey….which turns out to be very different.