Stage 1 of Tour de Holland (Bev and Mark it’s only entries) left the “Down Under” camping ground in bright sunshine on July 6th . . . . to celebrate Bev’s birthday. We embark on our personal Tour de Holland!! Why not ? ? All pumped up after watching the professionals in Utrecht, we set off in hunt for windmills & tulips – and anything else interesting!!IMG_4385aIMG_4829

Racing alongside the canals & fietspaden (bike-paths) we pass cows, goats, tractors, beautiful Dutch style houses and an old fire engine taking kids for summer holiday rides! IMG_4386aIMG_4382IMG_4393 IMG_4424The countryside is so lush and green with many gorgeous bridges IMG_4403IMG_4824 IMG_4430and unusually named (to us) villages . .. . BENSCHOP!! Our son Ben should find this amusing?!?!?!IMG_4826

The weather and the race heat up!!  After 30km it is time for refuelling . . . . at quaint village café in Lopikerkapel (no idea how to pronounce it!!). The café owner asked us to sign her Guest Register and we proudly left our Aussie Bruce card. Menu .. tosti broodje ham en kaas (toasted ham and cheese sandwich), the best Dutch appeltaart (apple cake) we’ve eaten this trip . . . all washed down with a cold Heineken!! Who would have thought Bev would love a cold beir!?!?! All this for only 14 euro for two of us!IMG_4381

Look what we have discovered – our first windmill of The Tour!?!?!IMG_4400IMG_4388

However, no luck on our search for tulips today.

Crossing the finish line at 8pm, after travelling a gruelling 67km, we’re exhausted but pleased to complete the stage with NO crashes in our peloton ! . . . .  We proudly don our yellow jerseys and party at the café across the road called “Down Under” !! . . True!!

What a wonderful & memorable Birthday . . . . and to win my first Tour de Holland was the best birthday present!! Thanks for all your encouragement and best wishes from home in Australia . . . . I couldn’t have succeeded without you!.!.!

4 thoughts on “Tour de Holland

  1. Congratulations Team Bartlett !!!!Your 67km tour takes out First Prize. Loved it all.

  2. 67 kms? You two must be superfit after the mini Grand Tour.
    Did U2 enjoy the Dutch toastie Nibalis and maybe a glass of Pinot or a cheeky little Maillot Jaune, peut-etre? and lunch only Costa 14 euros- wow.just. wow. #bargain#grabspassport
    The Sky looks so beautifully blue and we are extremely jealous of your swashbuckling adventures and the wonderful weather- do you ever get caught Indurain?
    You are both looking so healthy and fit-just like Hollywood Movistars. Are the Armstrong and the legssleek after all that pedaling? Sure looks like it from the pics- you could almost smell the testosterone from the other side of the Greg le Monde.
    And Mark (#RichardBransonlookalike)-your hair is getting so long-Pah and Evans above!
    You ain’t fooling me, mate- im no dope. C’mon now, tell the truth- extensions or even a wee Wiggins, perhaps?
    If it is indeed a Bradley, can I borrow it? (Bev-please make sure etapes it off and equipes it safely for me).
    Anyway, enjoy the tour et adieu, mes amis…………
    Froome Mike and Pinki (apologies and groans- too much time (trials) on my hands).

    1. Have never seen so many “Tour” references in one paragraph!! Well done Mike!

      I take it the broken bones are healing – glad we provide a diversion from all the sitting around you are doing.

      FYI – yesterday 20,000 and day before 19,000 steps!!

      Have a great day,
      Mark & Bev

      1. References? What references? I thought that I was being subtle.

        The ankle is healing fine thanks. 3 weeks and the cast is off (phew).
        As for the steps, well done. Im down to about 125 a day!

        Keep going with the updates please- they have become essential sofa reading!


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