Mototour 2007 - day 2-3

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June 2nd 2007
Published: January 25th 2008
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Day 2-3: Køge (Denmark) to Utrecht (Netherlands)
Distance: 710 km (of 8,667 km total)

Marion woke up in Køge at 7 am. Zak was up earlier because of birds singing in the trees. The sky was grey and it was drizzling lightly. We packed up and were ready to go by 9 am. We weren't too impressed with ourselves that it took 2 hours to get going. We went looking for breakfast in the center of Køge, and discovered a charming little town with typical Danish houses. Brecky was coffee and some Danish pastries.

We finally got going by 10 am. It was a very long and tiring ride all way to Utrecht, rain and grey skies for most of it. We crossed into Germany by taking the 45-min ferry from Rødby to Puttgarden, which helped break up the journey (very important for mototouring) and gave us time to relax.

Once over the German side, we were greeted with miles and miles of highway reconstruction works, causing traffic jams. We hadn't quite counted on that, and called our friend Paulien to say we wouldn't be arriving in Utrecht till at least 8 pm.

The sun showed up again close to the Netherlands, and we could finally shed our rain gear. Once on the Dutch side, there was not too much traffic. In contrast to last year, we hadn't noticed that many biker-travelers. Perhaps it was too early in the season.

Another striking thing is how different things are, once across an imaginary man-made line called a border: The sky seemed more open, and IT WAS! - The Dutch have laws about keeping cables underground, and you might not notice at first, there are no telephone poles and power lines. At the gas station on the dutch side, we were met with 2-meter-tall (6' 8") giants called Dutch people. Blood line and genetics does not explain all of it - contrary to aryanism, biologically speaking, there aren't really any pure races. It's amazing what a few things like restricted population movements (borders) trading laws and the resultant diets (dairy?) will do to make huge differences in the stature and development of generations of human stock.

Arrived in Utrecht 8:30 pm, and met Paulien and her boyfriend Ferry. They live in a nice 3-floor building on the outskirts of the city, and the apartment is filled with fabulous items/souvenirs collected from Paulien's trips around the world. After a lovely Thai fish dish, and red wine, we talked till midnight then collapsed in bed.

Zak got up at 10 am. Marion slept till 12 - soooo tiring to sit on the back of motorcycle! 😊 After a shower and a good breakfast, Paulien took us on a tour of Utrecht. We took a bus to the center, strolled pass charming Dutch canals, had a Dutch waffle at the market, had tea/coffee by the waterside. We saw the main old cathedral - a whole part of it is missing from a big storm in 17th century, but there are still markings left on the ground showing where the foundations of the cathedral once stood. After some shopping, we had beer by the canal. Restaurants with outdoor seating on the sunny-side banks of the canal are popular and busy - people don't want to sit in the shade - and we were barely welcome for only having a drink and not ordering any food.

Back at Paulien's we had a BBQ on her roof top. It took a bit of guts to climb a flimsy ladder leaning on the side of a 2nd-floor balcony, but once up there it was worth it. We had a great Bordeaux Rosé, LaTulipe (made by a famous Dutch guy whom Paulien knew) which made it bit more difficult to come down from the roof. Beautiful first summer day of our trip.


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