This is us

Our Adventure



Hello to All!

Here are Bar, Tas, Noes and Fiet and we have a great idea put into practice. We´ve found an old fire truck and can´t drain our mind to drive arround the world with it.

Take a look to our experiences and will be part of our adventure.

September 2020 - While we are in a completely different environment and with completely different circumstances… .we would like to share some of our adventures from our Roadkapje trip with you. The road to the Netherlands ... or not yet ... End of May 2019: The crossing from Albania to Italy has become a quiet crossing for most of us, despite the rough sea after the heavy thunderstorms in the evening. The view of the Italian city of Bari in the rising sun is beautiful. Because we were one of the last on board in Albania, we are now one of the first to disembark. We get involved in the spirited driving behavior of the Italians. Despite the tempting fresh coffee and bakery smells of the city of Bari, we drive straight out of town.

Outside the city there are very old trees in the many olive groves. The trees have a wonderful growth, which makes it even possible to stand in the trunk. The fields in the groves and especially around the trees have been mowed very short. All this to prevent the contamination of a disease that the spitbug could transmit, which would doom these ancient trees. Enforcement controls are so strict that helicopters regularly fly over. Who are then enthusiastically admired and waved to by the girls. We drive towards Ostuni, the white city on a hill. We spend the night on the rocky coast, at a small sandy beach. We are very tired and tense from the crossing and the upcoming appointment.

A quick swim in the sea, playing tag and a good night's sleep works wonders. We arrive at our appointment via narrow winding roads. For the next 6 weeks we will look after the dog Poppy, her home and garden, while the friendly Scottish owner goes on a trip. We are welcomed very warmly and enthusiastically. We have a pleasant conversation and it feels very familiar and pleasant on both sides. Poppy lives in an extended trullo house. This housing construction is specific to the region. We're in Puglia, the southeastern province, in the heel of Italy's boot-shape. Trulli have a conical roof, sometimes decorated with primitive, Christian or magical symbols. They are built of limestone, without the use of cement.

We have a few days left before babysitting Poppy. During these days and later also with Poppy we explore Puglia. We swim in the two seas, the Adriatic Sea and the Ionian Sea, which wash ashore at the heel shape of Italy. We admire the various fish and sea plants. We have entertaining conversations with the local population. The weather is wonderfully sunny. Here too, we let ourselves be seduced by playing board games on the beach, which also help us to train and increase the understanding of numbers. At the coastal town called Monopoly, we can of course not resist to play the party game Monopoly together!

We enjoy local culinary delights such as pizza, pasta, fresh cheese and Italian biscuits for breakfast. We learn what a traditional Italian eating day entails: strong coffee with a biscuit for breakfast, 4-course menu for lunch (where the salad, meat, pasta are not served at the same time and plate) and pizza for dinner in the evening. La dolce vita! The heel of the boot contains beautiful cliffs, plains with grass and rocks, a waterfall, seaside resorts, villages, nice houses in beautiful places with a view of the sea and very old olive and pine groves. We drive past more very old olive groves, places where the houses are colorfully painted, with balconies and thatched curtains at the doors. It all feels subtropical and colonial. In the glow of the setting sun, a flock of flamingos flies over Roadkapje. We admire this group again the next day, when they are sleeping on one leg, in a nature reserve filled with brackish water.

We enjoy a completely different kind of sand at each beach. Here we collect mini shells that remind us of grandma Fiona, who also does this in Scotland. Nice to make beautiful memories of grandma Fiona and her family from Scotland at these moments! On the west coast of the Ionian sea, adorned with lava rocks, a stonefish lets itself be fooled by nipping the bait on our fishing rod. This catch makes us convinced that fishing with a rod is not for us. With gloves on and extreme precision, we can let the beautifully camouflaged poisonous fish swim freely again. We store the fishing rod in Roadkapje, to serve as a souvenir with beautiful Scottish memories. Many thanks, Pat and Diana!

We spend the night in this beautiful place. An Austrian couple with an Italian dog and an Italian young couple also spend the night here. Together we enjoy a delicious dinner and breakfast in the evening and morning sun. We have fun, joyful, interesting conversations. The dog, Luca, is very sensitive and traumatized from abuse in his early years. We see up close what the consequences can be of how some people interact with animals. In many countries we have seen examples of this that makes us sad. The Austrian couple gives us more insight into how to feel and communicate beautifully with animals.

Of course, as soon as we are in the trullo house, we try out the stone pizza oven, which is next to the house. The sweet, friendly Italian neighbors, Dominica, Franco and Petro, tell us all about the history of this area and the house we live in. The neighbors are very nice, warm people who give us a glimpse into the original Italian life. It is a great celebration to be so pleasantly, friendly and warmly included in their family. The other, international neighbors are also hospitable and warm to us. It is warm, so we take a walk early in the morning and / or later in the evening with Poppy. During the daily walks with our dog Poppy, we meet more Italian residents in the area. We drink coffee together, buy delicious fresh vegetables from the local grower, get wine from the local grape grower, chat in Italian, English and Dutch.

Celebrating a birthday of one of us, we are surprised by some of our family members ... who are happy to celebrate this with us! It's really nice to be able to share a part of our daily life in Italy with them! In the short time together, we visit beautiful places in the area. We visit ao the historic village of Alberobello. This village has a core with all Trulli houses. We enjoy this beautiful village and experience the nice evening atmosphere with dancing on the village square. We watch movies together and play board games. We swim and enjoy various beaches, eat out and visit markets. Together with the family and the Italian neighbors we follow a part, including the quarter-final Italy-Netherlands !, of European women's football. Because there is now, one evening, babysitting for the girls, we can also enjoy time with the two of us for a long time! The white city of Ostuni brings, for the 2 of us, a beautiful romantic evening.

And then, after traveling 15,000 km through Europe, it happens for the first time: We are being chased… .. by a police car with a flashing light! That evening we want to go out for dinner with the family at a pizzeria. We drive a local route already known to us. For the “normal” tourist, this route is not the most common way to the pizzeria. The police car that we just passed has been chasing us for at least 5 minutes, but makes no move to stop us… eventually we arrive, with the police car still on the bumber, at the pizzeria… .. it appears to be closed. The police car comes to our side and the window opens… the policeman and woman ask us what our problem is? When we tell us what our problem is: that our favorite pizzeria is closed and we can't eat pizza, they smile understandingly… ”FOLLOW ME”, they shout and off we go… .Now the police car suddenly drives in front of us with flashing lights and they escort us to another pizzeria! Where, after enjoying this unexpected VIP treatment, we enjoy those delicious Italian pizzas! What a nice country this is… if you don't believe it… .We have witnesses!

On the way, on one of the outings with part of the family, we see a white giant cloud plume in the distance ??? This turns out to be the eruption of the volcano Stromboli. Wow! We say goodbye to the family. In addition to maintaining the garden, looking after the house and looking after the nice dog Poppy, we also clean up a garage and get an old-timer tractor running. When we clean up, we separate the waste and bring most of it to a recycling point. This gives room for the future plans of the owners: converting the garage into a b & b. (So if you are looking for a nice place in this beautiful area ...!) We regularly visit our Italian neighbors and taste various fresh Italian delicacies. We learn to prepare pizza, cookies and capers. We pick the capers from the garden, so we find out that the caper plant has beautiful flowers, but that they do not come into their own .... because potted capers are the flower buds!

Sad and grateful for the nice memories we have been able to make, we say goodbye to the nice, naughty dog Poppy, the owner and the sweet, pleasant local residents! We are going to discover other parts of Italy. We drive along the east coast. It is a pleasure to be out and about with Roadkapje and to live in her ... (to be continued) Thank you, dear temperamental inhabitants of Puglia, for your nice, warm welcome and inspiration! We wish you all a healthy, sustainable future! Especially now, in 2020, we know what you all have and are still enduring. Much strength, courage and compassion!

More Roadtrip stories are to be found at 'Our Adventure'.

To be continued...