Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Wattwanderung

The tides of the North Sea are extreme. The water level difference between high and low tide can be over three meters or darn near ten feet. During the low tide, kilometers (miles) of mud are exposed as far as the eye can see. In some places that mud is thick enough to cross during low tide in something called a "wattwanderung."

But, since the tide returns along difficult to see or track channels that can quickly and very unexpectantly trap people far out from the actual land on "earth" that will soon be ten feet below water (in other words, "you gonna drown, fool"), it is highly recommended to attempt a wattwanderung only in good health and only with an experience guide.

Yet, a wattwanderung remains a "must do" while visiting the North Sea. Sure, its deadly and all that but...well, people are strange.

The Mr. was really excited about going on a wattwanderung; I was open to it. We talked about all sorts of possibilites for how we could make it work so that all three of us could go and landed on the idea that he would carry PJ in a backpack.

But as we learned more about the challenges of a wattwanderung, how long this one was going to be (4 hours minimum), the weather turned chilly, and my nausea and body pain continued...we decided that the Mr. would join the excursion and PJ and I would hang out back on the farm.

PJ and I joined the group to send them off. To grasp just how cold it had gotten in the picture below I have on two shirts, a jacket, a scarf, jeans, thick socks, and wellingtons. And I was cold. The charming young lady next to me has on shorts and is barefoot. Turns out her outfit was sensible.


PJ and I joined the group for a few feet before we both lost interest and turned back. See how everyone has on shorts and are barefoot? In just six hours or so where they are standing will be underneath between four and ten feet of water. All of it.


PJ and I were less than impressed. It was cold, windy, and muddy. So we went home...


...and took a three hour nap together. God, I love sleep.


Meanwhile, the Mr., our host (pictured below), and the entire wattwanderung group sunk thigh-deep into mud (check out her pants for how far she sunk in...shorts would have been better), cut their feet on shells hidden beneath the mud, got rained on, froze everywhere except for where the mud had created a warm protective layer around their legs and feet...and supposedly had an awesome time together.


People are strange.

A few weeks later the Mr. and I exchanged our thoughts about our totally different days. Can you believe it? He actually thinks he got the better deal with his wattwanderung. Please, PJ and I slept for three hours.

Three. Hours.

If that isn't the perfect vacation day, I really don't know what is.



xo

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