#96 our beautiful environs

Sunday I went to Xrds church, I sat with a couple from my lifegroup & then chatted with another couple after. Most everyone else from the lifegroup goes to the 10am service, whereas I’ve been at the 12 noon one. I was feeling a bit lonely and down about how my family finds it so difficult to communicate and live in harmony together. On Monday morning, in 1 Peter,  I read that He calls the christians brothers & sisters and makes it possible for them to have mutual affection & love. So I wrote “Family Maker” on my hand and kept praying to Him about it. That evening over dinner of sausage, mash & leeks we had a such a laugh, all 6 of us. we had candles on as usual, but a pot of chives as a daft centrepiece and we were joking about them & talking about dutch christmassy stuff, and we had a bowl of chocolate-covered Pepernoten – choc covered mini gingery biscuits.

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So He satisfied me that we do have some good times all 6 together without critical voices sometimes!

It’s been rather cold, rainy & we’ve had a few hail storms. At lunchtime today it looked dry. So I got the girls to saddle up & come for a cycle to enjoy our beautiful environs!

First I had to get a bike-fixer to come & cut this lock chain as my son had broken the key off in the lock. This is why we need at least 7 bikes – so people can still get to work & school, even though a bike is stuck elsewhere!

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It only took a couple of minutes to cut through the chain, £10. Then I did a little bible study with my two girls.

We 3 had a hot pasty at Zijdelward, then popped through the Libellebos to where Hollandse Dijk meets the river Amstel.

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Maybe the above looks a bit bland to you with no rolling hills or woodland? But I absolutely love it! There is miles of green in the background, that’s the Ronde Hoep. I feel so alive & happy near the water. And FREE! Even in the freezing wind we had today.

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We saw all kinds of ducks, geese, swans, herons, cormorant, grebe, coots & moorhen today as well as some large dark brown fluffy sheep, normal sheep & horses and ponies.  We saw a man catch a fish. That’s something I’d hardly ever seen in UK. I’d seen plenty of people fishing, but rarely an actual catch.

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Approaching Nes Aan De Amstel. You can see this church tower from just about anywhere between Amstelveen & Uithoorn. There’s a pub & a cafe here, but neither are open before WEDNESDAY at 4pm! (It’s Tuesday) Oh the countryside eh!

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Cycling west down Nesserlaan, The wind full in our faces. It took ages to cycle this 1.5km road – battling the wind! Waardhuizen, in Amstelveen appears on the right, and the flats of Westwijk are on the horizon on the left.

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About to get on the Bovenkerkerpolder, looking towards Nes Aan De Amstel.

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And another beautiful leg of this round trip, the Bovenkerkerpolder. Lola is shown up ahead .Can you make out the silhouette of the blocks of flats on the Northeast border of Uithoorn, looking very pale in the righthand quarter of the horizon?  On this bike-and-tractor path we are surrounded by fields & the odd farmhouse.

After the Bovenkerkerpolder we cycled down through Uithoorn along the river Amstel and then coasted down Konigin Maximalaan, the N196, which is a slight downward slope from the Amstel to our home.

Lola & I swapped bikes a couple of times – hers is an effortless ride, mine has a comfy seat! The 3 of us cycled 18km/11miles of river, fields & town. This kind of trip always brings to mind Psalm 16:6

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