DAY 8 – Now that the camp stove had been broken out I thought I’d go crazy and make a hot porridge for breakfast, after all there’s nothing like starting the day with a hot breakfast. I thought we’d be able to have porridge until the morning when I opened the milk I’d bought the previous evening, only to find it was some kind of sour milk that definitely wouldn’t have tasted too good with oats. So despite my best intentions, we had to go without hot porridge on this particular morning, and make do with cheese and bread instead!
The day looked distinctly overcast as we were packing up the tent and the skies threatened rain, but held off, at least until we had arrived into the centre of Arnhem from our campsite location, about 5km outside of town. Then the rain didn’t stop. In an attempt to escape a soaking we ducked into a nearby McDonalds, and made use of the situation by checking emails and searching for places to stay that evening. Whilst waiting out the rain we parked our bikes in the entrance to the McDonalds, but made sure they weren’t blocking the way in for any customers.
We had been there for about ten minutes when the irate manager came out and shouted in Dutch for us to leave, almost giving himself a heart attack in the process! When we had finished checking emails we moved, although the rain hadn’t eased any. We donned our waterproofs for the first time and made our way out of town, following the railway tracks to the south east and toward the Dutch/German border, about 25km from Arnhem.
We crossed the border in the early afternoon, although the only sign indicating the change in country gave the speed limits for German roads. The first larger town we came to was Emmerich, where everything was closed. Great we thought, in Holland everything is closed on Mondays, and now in Germany, everything is closed on Wednesdays! It was only when we found the tourist information office that we were told it was actually a German national holiday, hence everything was closed. We found an open bakery and got some lunch though.
With nothing going on, we continued riding until about 5km short of Rees, where we chanced upon a campsite. We just managed to get the tent set up before the heavens opened, and from then until the next morning the rain didn’t stop and we didn’t leave the tent, apart from once, to use the bathroom.
Route: Arnhem to near Rees