A leisurely start from Breskens, delayed by rain showers and exacerbated by confusion as to whether the water on the pontoon was drinking water or not…. There was a notice on the hose that said it was not drinking water, but the haven meester was clear that not only was it drinking water, but also that the only reason that the label was there was because of regulations! Roger has formed the view that the Dutch are sticklers for regulations. Here is the view of the harbour office, from the boat.
By 11am, the tide was flooding hard, and we crabbed over to Vlissingen and the entry to the canal. We hung around waiting for the sluice to open. It was narrow: room for three boats in line. I manoeuvred in and got it wrong, and the pushpit ended up hitting the wall. (At least it wasn’t the paint.) Roger will be doing the close quarters stuff in future! Out of the lock, there was a bridge across the canal: we waited for what seemed ages for it to open – probably 30 minutes. Within another 10 minutes: delayed by the next bridge - this time about 15 minutes. On the next stretch up to Middleburg we mosied along having lunch (the lobster claws!) and the convoy of boats got away so that when the next bridge opened we were a long way back – Roger had to open up the throttle and just made it through before the traffic light went red! Only one more bridge followed, and then the entrance to Middleburg. So, here we are in the heart of this charming town, moored against the wall. The harbour master would have liked to have put us into one of the box moorings opposite, but Roger requested not (his paint is very precious – I quote!) and she relented. Middleburg has been heavily restored after bombing in May 1940, but has retained a very special character and ambience. In addition to the canal where the Jacht Haven is, there’s also a moat, with what must have been bastions during the days of the Dutch East India Company. We walked round and through the town, following the little lokes and cycleways through what is a small and compact town. I love it! Here is a picture of the Jacht Haven, taken from the boat this afternoon.
Tomorrow, on to Veere, at the end of the canal, and from there on into the Oosterschelde, probably on Sunday.