"" Writer's Wanderings: An Afternoon in Veere, The Netherlands

Monday, April 24, 2023

An Afternoon in Veere, The Netherlands

After an enjoyable cruise down the canal and a pass through a lock while eating lunch, we arrived at Veere in The Netherlands. Netherlands became the term during the Holy Roman Empire to denote the low-lying (nether) region (lands) that well describes the area claimed from the water through dikes and canals and windmills that pump water out of the land. Holland, which many think is another name for the Netherlands is actually a province of the Netherlands.

Veere is probably the smallest town we will visit. There are only about three or four streets that make up the retail/business district. Their primary industry is tourism. Our cruise manager (like a cruise director only he also handles other things like future cruise bookings) aboard the River Empress led our walking tour. It didn't take much longer that twenty minutes to explore the whole town with a walk-through.

Veere sits at the mouth of the canal that flows into the Veerse Meer, a larger body of water. It was obviously a strategic position at one time since there are bunkers and fortifications built on one side of the canal that is nearest the sea. 

From the 15th to the 18th century it was an important trading port for Scotland. Wool was the major commodity. 

Once our tour was over, we crossed the little harbor area where there were a couple dozen small boats moored and climbed the dike on the other side to check out the fortifications, including the old cannons. The damp haze made it a bit foggy which gave the area a mysterious look. 

As we explored we saw a windmill in the distance farther down the trail that followed the dike. There were also several concrete structures that at first we thought were a sort of dam but when Bob found an opening to one we discovered they were tunnels that led to a small bunker where we saw some people emerging. Bob went part way in but didn't follow it to the end. Instead we decided to take another trail that looked to lead to the windmill.

We had to pass through a gate and a few steps past the entrance, we suddenly caught the smell of barnyard animals. A few steps more and we were sure the trail was used by more than just tourists. We never saw any animals but after careful observation we determined it had to be from sheep. We stepped carefully.

When we found a plaque about the 80 Years War we realized we were in a park that also served as a pasture. It was the war for the Dutch Republic to oust the Spaniards.

Back in town we stopped in a little cafe and ordered the special little pancakes called poffertjes. They were a little doughy but had plenty of powdered sugar. I indulged in a little cup of hot chocolate as well and hoped I wouldn't be sorry for it (lactose and all). 

I cannot begin to tell you how wonderful our food has been on the River Empress. Lunch had been all sorts of sausage with sauerkraut and noodles that were a bit like dumplings. I was in heaven. Dinner was duck l'orange. Thankfully the portions are manageable and hopefully I haven't overeaten. All the walking sure gives excuse to eat. I'm taking  advantage of it.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...