2013-06-08 53 6
In a meadow, between Noordhorn and Oldehove
Cycle over, visit hash, probably be turned back by closed fence for the umpteenth time, cycle back.
Well! It seems I finally reached a hash in my home graticule (after visiting 5 surrounding ones, it was about time).
I decided to go by bike, as it was within a reasonable distance of my hometown, and the weather was really nice. I first cycled to a friend of mine, to drop something off and drink a cup of tea. This was still within Groningen. There's not a lot to tell about the cycling per se. I passed some pretty villages, looked at the map every now and then and ate something at a fish stall in Zuidhorn ("kibbeling"; Dutch people know what this is: small pieces of battered and fried white fish served with a rather garlicky sauce). The sky clouded over while I was on the way, but fortunately it didn't start raining until I got back home.
After passing Noordhorn I got close to the hash. Geohashing in the area where I live is rather difficult, because almost all of the land is farmland (or sea), and farmers like to put fences around everything. As I am a law-abiding civilian without a way to find out to which farm a certain part of land belongs this usually means the end of my hashing attempt. However, in this case the fence didn't seem to exist; there were just two poles at the entrance of the meadow. As it was a meadow I decided it was safe to enter (I would never walk on farmland, of course). So, thank you, less-fence-happy farmer! You made my geohash possible. I took some pictures and created an XKCD mark on the side of the road with locally sourced materials (not all environmentally friendly, though - what is a piece of electric wiring doing on the side of the road?).
On the way home I had the wind in my back so I went a lot quicker. I passed a monumental farm that was called the "Hamsterborg" on my map; it appears to be called "Piloersemaborg" now. I liked the old name better. I passed the village of Den Ham; nothing more than a few houses along a road, the central feature seems to be an outdoor skating rink. Then I cycled for a long time along a canal called Reitdiep. Some of the side bridges were closed, but this was well indicated and I could go to the other side of the canal. In the city of Groningen I found myself at the edge of a highway, with cycling paths left and right closed, and on the other side as well. No indication at all of how to get out of this situation (except turning back, which wasn't going to get me anywhere; or cycling on the highway, which would have been suicidal). In the end I used one of the closed paths (it looked perfectly fine to me) and crossed below the highway in another place. From there it got downright bizarre: at one point the cycling way was redirected to go through a pair of containers. No joke. I took a picture, go see it. After passing this the way home was easy and my roommate had already fixed dinner. I had cycled at least 40 km, and probably a bit more, in 2,5 hours.
Another one of my goals was to drop of Postcrossing postcards in as many different mailboxes as possible; my proud accomplishment is using five mailboxes I never used before, in three different towns. Also I bought a really cheap headtorch in the village of Zuidhorn; good to use for nightly geohashing! (And camping of course.)
| elwingelfje earned the Bicycle geohash achievement
| elwingelfje achieved level 4 of the Minesweeper Geohash achievement