Afsluitdijk

More holiday snaps, but these are of a much greater vintage.

The day after our failed island-hopping exploits we drove across northern Germany and then crossed the Afsluitdijk the dam/causeway which turned the Zuiderzee, a huge bay, into the freshwater Ijsselmeer. It was an extremely windy day and one carriageway of the road was closed, with the wind whipping the Ijsselmeer into impressive waves. The Afsluitdijk is 20 miles long and it was quite odd driving along it, knowing that we were on a narrow strip of land with large expanses of apparently angry water on either side of us. It would have been nice to stop to have a look, but it really wasn’t the day for it.

I’ve been across the Afsluitdijk before. In the summer of 1968. When my parents heard that we were heading that way last summer, they sent me some photos from my previous crossing.

We were in a mini, my parents and my grandparents and me. I’m told it was a hot summer – it must have been fun with 5 of us in a such a tiny car; three smokers and one very car-sick toddler. Here’s a photo of the Afsluitdijk in 1968…

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…which I presume my dad took. The pale blue car with cases on the roof may well be our mini.

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And here are my grandparents, Sid and Flo, younger then than I am now, which seems quite odd, and my mum and me. I’m in the fetching baby-blue hoodie. I was almost as cute then as I am now.

Afsluitdijk

11 thoughts on “Afsluitdijk

  1. Home knitted kids clothes that used to itch like hell. Nightmare memories.
    I’ve always had a fascination with that causeway and what it’s like to drive across. Interesting to stop but must be dull and tedious to actually drive over. Netherlands must be a decent place for a short holiday. Interesting cities, nice people and some fine coastline. THO visits quite a bit and raves about it.

    1. beatingthebounds says:

      Flat as a pancake, obviously. And hopeless for vegans, though that probably doesn’t apply in the big cities. THO knows the area where we stayed and we’ve chatted, enthusiastically, about the museum which features in my next post (already written and scheduled). I would definitely go back. I don’t know the beaches, but I suspect they are pleasant.
      Home knitwear is another pleasure our kids have largely dipped isn’t it. I lived in homemade sweaters and tank tops until some point in my mid-teens when sweatshirts must have arrived in the UK. Around the same time as we discovered ‘continental’ quilts.

  2. Oh my, home knitted outfits. For myself it was normally aran knits and jumpers, matching for myself and my younger brother. My nan also used to knit my school jumper because my mum refused to buy one. Two days playing football at play time and it would be stretched to beyond recognition by the other kids trying to catch me!

    1. beatingthebounds says:

      Oh yes! The capacity of those things to stretch was astonishing. At Uni I got stuck with the nickname ‘Farmer Giles’ (amongst others) because of a shapeless jumper which I’d been wearing since I was about 12 I think and which had grown with me.

    1. beatingthebounds says:

      I’m very fond of the second one. I know that my parents also have photos (in black and white for some reason) of me and my cousin K on a Baltic beach. She’s only a month older than me and, at that age we looked quite similar I think, but it’s easy to tell us apart, since we’d adopted standard German beach attire. I shan’t be sharing those photos. It’s nearly my Birthday, but I draw the line and appearing on my own blog in my Birthday suit.

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