We never know what we will stumble upon during random, walking tours but having a few reindeer in our path was a subtle reminder that winter was fast approaching…the llamas and emu only added to our confusion as to what to do next! Natuurhaven de Kreupel had been our first stop after departing Seabell at Makkum. What a fantastic re-visit of this beautiful haven! No reindeer or llamas here, just several migrating birds and a few jumping fish. For the first time since our arrival in the Netherlands, we were completely alone – NO OTHER BOATS! It was a great feeling after three-weeks on the hard to have found a private “anchorage.” And we were totally self-sufficient; solar cranking out power, Webasto heater keeping us warm and dry, fully stocked fridge…it reminded us of why we’ve been cruising; the solitude, the beauty, the feeling of being completely free. These are the moments I wish I could package and send home to friends for them to open and enjoy after a long day’s work. Then, during our second night at de Kreupel two sailing boats docked behind us and we snapped back to reality. We were still in the Netherlands. Our destination was the town of Enkhuizen, where we would rendezvous with fellow cruisers S/Y Zanzibar whom we’d met earlier during our Netherlands travels. The port of Enkhuizen was anything but private; when the town quayside is full, additional incoming boats simply raft-up to those boats along the perimeter. Rafting-up is expected, and the Dutch do it with such finesse that one doesn’t feel as though her home is being invaded. It’s not a social event, however, as in the United States where raft-ups are often among friends and become an instant party. A greeting is offered and inquiry as to the next day’s departure time, but there is no cocktail hour and no chatter about where each boat is headed or has been. It’s a bit of a let-down to me, one moment appreciating quiet at a secluded location and the next being joined by several neighbors who don’t intend on socializing. Baffling! But we laid out fenders on Detour‘s exposed side and headed across the harbour to Zanzibar for our own social event with Henk & Tineke; an evening filled with many laughs!
It was along this scenic stroll as we approached the beach, to our surprise, we’d stumbled upon reindeer which sparked discussion about our winter plans. This stop, at Enkhuizen, was en-route to our reserved, winter berth. The sunny, autumn day was encouraging us to venture further rather than secure to the dock from November until April. Winter. A looming idea. But the idea had forced us to make extended plans, a new spin for us.