Wednesday, November 01, 2006


Today we had the first autumn storm of the year at the Dutch Coast. Gales up to 100 km, 10 Bft from NorthWest caused the water in Delfzijl to rise up to 4.85 meters above sealevel, where high water normally reaches 1.30 meters. It led to a lot of inconveniences in the northern part of the Netherlands. Security teams were alarmed to inspect the situation on the dikes. The coastguard turned out to assist ships in problems. Land outside the dikes and harbours flooded. The storm brought quit a lot of damage. Dramatically is the situation with a group of 100 horses on a salt marsh. They got isolated by the water. More than 15 horses drowned, a rescue operation for the other horses is going on at this very moment. It’s unbelievable and so stupid that the landowner didn’t take his responsibility to bring the horses in at time. He was warned that the land where the horse stood would be flooded. This storm was no surprise, the KNMI had given out a weather-alarm the day before.

The waves out at sea must have been gigantic. One of the biggest lifeboats of the KNRM, the Anna Margarathe capsized during a mission this morning. The Anna Margaretha is a Rigid Inflatable Boat of the Arie Visser Class: length 18,80 m, twin jet, 2 x 1000 hp, max. speed 35 kts, capacity up to 120 persons. These boats are selfrightening, but also so unblievable stable that they don’t capsize (normally). There must really have been a huge sea outside. Breaking waves of 10 meters high were reported above the Wadden-isles.

And now it’s autumn. The temperature has dropped to normal figures. My constitution already felt some days ago this climate change was coming. Since last weekend I suffer a headache, are the muscles aching and is my mood rather cloudy. Darkness in the morning when I go to work, darkness in the evening when I come back from work (Daylight-saving time is over) don’t contribute to my temper…
So I was happy I had a few spare hours this morning. I went out for a short paddle (first I thought about a little rolling session but my head didn’t feel like it). Often I wish there was some more challenging paddle water here in Woerden, but in conditions like today the sheltered waters around Woerden are a big advantage. Even with gales up to 7 or 8 Bft, you can paddle here at ease. The worst thing that might happen is to get struck by a branche of a tree falling down. Perhaps I should better wear a helmet? (note: the use of a kayak-helmet is an item for one of the next posts in this blog). Anyway: my mood is much sunnier after a day with a few outdoor activities!

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