Travels

So, Al, that “cooler in the west” thing; how’d it work out for you?

Despite the temperature, and I know this is a recurring theme, I decided to cycle into Breda. It was an attractive old city, sitting within a border of water, and closely associated with English history. Charles II of England lived in Breda for most of his exile during the Commonwealth of England. His sister, Mary, Princess Royal and Princess of Orange, was widow of Stadtholder William II, Prince of Orange and co-regent for their son William III sovereign Prince of Orange, who later became King of England, Scotland and Ireland. Therein lie the roots of Brexit’s troubles around the Irish border.

After a sweaty ride back to the van, I sought shade under the umbrellas at the bar, and enjoyed a couple of cold ones while updating my blog,

When I paid for my drinks, the owner asked what the weather was like in Manchester. I said it was a good 10 degrees cooler than here, and he showed me a Dutch news website which declared Breda was the hottest place in Europe! Not just the area, he was at pains to point out, but Breda! I guess, when you’re running a great bar and restaurant  on a marina and swimming lake, he had cause to be chuffed about the weather. Good on him, he runs a great set up.

Around seven in the evening, the wind got up and thunder could be heard all around. Everyone battened down the hatches but, apart from a little half-hearted rain, the weather moved on. It is currently hot as hell and humid. It is set to break on Saturday, so I’m going to ride the heat out here tomorrow.

Apropos of nothing, I’m mainlining Joni Mitchell at the moment – Wild Things Run Fast, Hejira, The Hissing of Summer Lawns and, of course, Blue. Could be the themes of travel.

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