Je bekijkt de reis...
Reisverslag Bart en Han en Tijn op reis!
25 september 2015
Bart en Han en Tijn op reis!
This one will be in English so that all the foreign friends we’ve made along the way can enjoy it as well.
We’re currently traveling through Canada and I just finished reading a book about Thomas McFadden, an English guy who got locked up in San Pedro Prison in La Paz, Bolivia, for dealing cocaine. It’s a super interesting book, especially because we’ve been to La Paz and saw that crazy prison as well.
After reading the book I wanted to reread our travel blog about Bolivia and then I noticed that we had quit writing blogs after Bolivia. We never finished the last two months of our travels: Peru and the Galapagos Islands. It’s a shame, because we did so many cool things during these two months. I will try to write a blog about those months another time, but I’ll need my travel diary for that.
Right now it’s been over a year since we’ve returned from our trip around the world. Although it was very nice to be back home and see all of our family and friends again it took us some time to get used to the every-day life again.
I was really lucky and got my old job back after a month and Bart started working as a post-doc at the university in November. The first two months we stayed with Bart’s family because our apartment was still rented out. But from September on we could go back to our own apartment and after doing some thorough cleaning we were all set again and ready to start our next adventure.
As we didn’t mention before because we didn’t write about Peru, we were in Cusco in May 2014 when we had to get a pregnancy test in our best Spanish. It worked because we went back to the hostel with one.... and after testing it Bart decided to test his Spanish skills again and get another one because he didn’t believe the outcome. At first we couldn’t believe it, but we we’re going to have a baby! Wahoo! Because we had friends traveling with us for the weeks following we decided to phone home to tell our parents and brothers the good news. They were all just as perplexed as we were and my brother even thought that it was a joke so we had to tell him 4 times before he believed it. Anyway, except for feeling nauseated during our cruise on the Galapagos Islands everything went really well and when we got back home we got our first echo and it turned out that the little one was doing fine!
We left our trip together but we smuggled someone extra back home, a little Chilean boy! But this new adventure also helped us to look forward to something else once we were back home.
When we got home from our trip I said that I had done enough traveling and that I didn’t feel like doing it for a very long time... ...That feeling didn’t last very long. They say traveling is in your blood and I guess that’s true.
Once I started working again I couldn’t wait to plan our next trip and in October we visited our friends Maartje and Adam in England for a couple of days and our friends Mischa, Ivo and Fien in Qatar for a week.
The pregnancy went really well and went by quite fast because after our short holiday I only had to work until Christmas before I got my pregnancy leave from work.
Our little Tijn was born on January 10th 2015 and is the most beautiful, cute little thing I’ve ever seen. He’s been doing really well ever since: sleeping through the nights, eating and drinking well and smiling a lot. I can’t believe he’s already eight months and starting to crawl and sit upright!
It’s a totally different adventure than our traveling adventure but it’s also a great one!
At first we were a bit afraid that our traveling days would be over. But during our travels we have seen a lot of people traveling with kids.
So secretly I was very pleased that my cousin Luuk announced that he was getting married in Canada on September 6th. It gave us a good reason to try if traveling with Tijn would work as well. Our friends Mischa and Desiree already showed us that it shouldn’t be a problem to fly with a baby. I guess I’m not the type that gets excited about going to Center Parks for a week. I don’t want to offend people who do because there’s nothing wrong with it... it just doesn’t make me happy, but I’m the type that rather stays in a tent for a couple of weeks and gets excited about biking around New Zealand so there’s a lot to say against that as well ;).
So after thinking about it we decided that we would give Canada a try! Whahoo! Almost the whole family was going to the wedding so it would be a lot of fun!
On September the 5th we flew from Amsterdam to Toronto. Tante Rinske dropped us off at Schiphol Airport at 6 in the morning (thanks again for that!!!) and we were ready to leave! I expected that flying with Tijn and him having a jetlag afterwards would be the hardest part of our trip... Guess I was wrong :)
He didn’t mind flying at all. Take off and landing went really well because we let him drink and during the flight he got is own bassinet in which he slept like a baby! During the moments that he was awake there was so much to see and a lot of flirting to do with other passengers and stewardesses. We were also on the same flight as oom Peter and tante Anneke en Henk en Coby Jippping, so we could walk around and visit them every now and again.
After arriving in Toronto we had to wait for a very long time to get through customs and then for our luggage to arrive. One of the luggage transport belts had been jammed so it took ages for the luggage to get through. All this time Onno had been waiting for us outside the terminal. After about 1,5 hours it turned out that one of our bags was missing. Luckily the bag containing our wedding clothes and Tijn’s stuff was there, but all of our normal clothes and his bed were in the missing bag... The airport staff wasn’t very helpful and sent us away with a form and told us to call them in 2 days... But... we don’t have a bed for Tijn and nothing to wear... Yes... well... usually it will be found within 48 hours so there’s nothing we can do for you... But... But... Never mind. I phoned mama to see whether we could borrow a baby bed from one of the cousins and luckily oom Rikus already had a baby bed available for us!
Anyway, we found Onno and went to get our rental car... A nice Audi A4! Whahoo... some good news after all! Unfortunately our luggage didn’t fit in it so we had to exchange it for a nice Ford SUV... to the disappointment of Onno en Bart. Once we were on the road we drove to tante Anneke’s house in London, Ontario, where the whole family got together for my mom’s birthday! It was really nice to see the whole family again and to meet our youngest cousins Ella and Nathalie! My other two Canadian cousins Esther and Talien got married in Canada and Italy a couple of years ago so every time we have a wedding abroad it’s always so much fun to be together with the whole family for a couple of days. Unfortunately oma Huisman decided that traveling to Canada would be to straining for her and my cousins Mirna and Sven couldn’t come because they had to study. Besides them, everybody was there.
The next day Luuk and Hilary got married at Luuk’s farm. It was a really nice day and the wedding was outdoors. The ceremony was beautiful and the party afterwards was a lot of fun! The following day papa and mama continued on traveling and we had another diner with the family.
We still had no idea where our luggage was. And because Monday was Labour Day most of the shops were closed and the Air Transat customer service was closed as well. Not that they responded to any of our phone calls or emails the day after but anyway. We had to find some clothes to wear and get a baby bed for Tijn for the day after when we were going back to Toronto. Luckily Walmart was open en we bought Tijn a nice bed.
On September the 8th we drove back to Toronto with and had a walk around the city in the evening. The next day we left Onno behind who wanted to explore Toronto for a couple more days. We went to get our RV (camper) and finally got our luggage back! The RV was huge: about 7,5 meters long and it felt like driving a truck. In the Netherlands you need a special driving license to drive this kind of RV, but in Canada they don’t really care. So Bart did a very good job driving it safely out of busy Toronto and to our first campsite.
It’s amazing how they designed the RV. It has a slide-out compartment to make it bigger once you’re at the campsite. It has a kitchen incl. an oven and microwave, a toilet and shower, a 2-person bed, a table and bench (that can be made into an extra bed) and a lot of space for Tijn’s bed. It even has a TV and you can turn on the heat if it gets cold! Okay it doesn’t sound that spectacular but if you look at how they’ve designed it and how everything fits on such a tiny space it’s pretty cool.
Anyway, we hadn’t planned where we wanted to travel to but the rental agency had a couple of suggestions on their website so we decided to drive to Bruce Peninsula, then take the ferry to Manitoulin Island, then further north-west to Sault Ste. Marie and Lake Superior National Park and afterwards back east to Algonquin National Park. There isn’t a whole lot to see on this route except for the nature but since Indian Summer is setting in and the weather is still pretty nice we did a lot of day hikes and a lot of nothing (reading / playing with Tijn / relaxing / running (because we still need to train for the half marathon) / stopping at Tim Hortons etc.) which was nice. We didn’t want to drive too much because of Tijn and the speed limit is 90-100km/h traveling takes a lot longer then back home. But he usually slept when we were driving and really enjoyed all the hikes and being outdoor a lot.
To us it really felt like we were on our around the world trip again, even with Tijn. Doing all the different hikes and staying at all these nice campgrounds near lakes and in the forests brought back a lot of good memories. Of course Tijn makes things a bit different because taking care of him just takes up a big part of your day and you can’t do all the things that you might have done without him, but I guess that’s just part of our lives now! We’ll have to postpone some of our wilder plans until he’s a bit older :)
Right now we are camping in Algonquin National Park. The trees are starting to turn yellow and red so it’s really beautiful. There are about 2000 black bears and a bit more mooses so we hope that we’ll spot at least one of each!
We already saw a snake, a lot of squirrels, 2 raccoons and a black bear cup but it would be nice to see a moose and another black bear. The campsite that we camped on yesterday had 2 black bears (a cup and a grown up male) walking around for the last weeks. They get attracted to the food. The bears hadn’t been spotted for the last 2 days and we didn’t see them either. But when we were sitting or walking outside you always had the feeling that a bear could be looking at you... It was a weird feeling: on the one hand you really want to see another bear but on the other hand... no thanks. We have to more days in Algonquin so who knows what we’ll see! During our hikes Tijn makes to many sounds (pa-pa-pa-pa) so he’ll probably scare them away anyway.
Hasta luego! Until our next adventure ;)
Not the pa-pa!
P.s. We did see another bear and a moose (+ calf).
On our fourth campsite in Algonquin we drove onto the campsite when Bart spotted a black bear walking into a cage. Because he was so excited to see a bear he backed the RV up to take another good look. From the other side a ranger came up to us waving us to drive on. Apparently they had been trying to catch the bear for 3 weeks and almost got it... until we drove by and it walked out of the cage again... Oops! We felt really sorry for the rangers. They shot it with a paintball gun to scare it away but it came back again a little bit later. Fortunately they caught it this time and will set it free on the other side of the national park. But the ranger said that they expect it to be back in a week or so...
We also woke up really early on the last two days in the park because we wanted to see a moose and you have the biggest chance of spotting one in the evening, night or early morning. The first day we got really lucky and saw a female moose with a young one eating on the side of the road. It was a beautiful and special sight and a perfect ending to a really nice holiday!
27 september 2015 08:40 | Door: Ellen
Wat een mooie reis weer en wat mag Tijn blij zijn met zulke avontuurlijke ouders en jullie met zo'n vrolijk mannetje! Liefs