From Oudenaarde we carried on along the Bovenschelde, across the Ringvaat ie ‘ringroad’ (taking great care at the crossroads) up into Ghent to Portus Ganda for a few last days before heading to Bruges for the winter.
We had a very sociable few days. Ellen and Peter (Vlinder), Diana & Chris (Esme) were there on the steps – we were invited to drinks by Vlinder, which turned into lots of drinks and a BBQ, and then to dinner on Esme the next evening. Then Jo & Tim came in (Maria of Zandaam) and so we went for drinkies at our favourite Trappistehuis bar and then dinner on Maria! All very sociable and most enjoyable!
We managed to fit in a visit to the flower market on Sunday morning and also a trip round the Industrial Museum. So a little bit of culture!
Then on Tuesday 2nd Oct we set off on the final leg of our season – out of Ghent and along the Kanaal Ghent-Oostende – about a 6 hour trip but all went well with a friendly commercial in front of us to get the bridges opened with little delay.
We came into Flandria at Bruges and had to raft up to another boat – people get here quite early in order to secure a good spot. But since we are not here all winter we’re not too bothered. However, the wind made it difficult to turn Piedaleau, and we ended up rafting to Jeanne rather than either of the other 2 possible options.
There really is a very friendly atmosphere in Bruges. There is a Facebook Group to keep in contact with each other and, of course, we now know quite a few people in both Flandria and the Coupure (other mooring option). So dinner on Shensi (Nicki & Andy) one evening and drinks at the Clubhouse on another.
Decided we must keep up with the culture too and so have bought Belgian Museum Passes – basically you pay 50 euros for a whole year and can visit lots of museums throughout Belgium. Hopefully we’ll be able to make good use of our cards!
So we are currently relaxing and enjoying Bruges. Some jobs to do on Piedaleau – re-bled the new fuel filter to ensure no air in the tubes and checked the fuel in the tank for water or fuel bugs (very nasty wee things that can do loads of damage to the engine!). That was our Saturday night entertainment – yep we sure know how to enjoy ourselves!!!!!