Sabbatical Day 23 – Vorden to Zelhem (17k)

Thursday, May 23, 2024
After an exceptional breakfast at our BnB, we head out at 9am. Today Tom’s parents will walk towards us for the last 5k, and then we will finish the path with them, and spend the next two nights with them in Winterswijk. It is another shorter day of only 17k walking.

  1. The views are becoming routine, the newness of what we see is giving way to the sameness, which is still beautiful but I am taking fewer pictures. Our focus is also changing from what we are seeing (castles, fields, trees, big puddles, grey sky) to what we are doing – the pleasure of just walking. Our bodies are stronger so that we no longer feel the pain or discomfort of our feet, and muscles, and packs like we used to.
  2. Our devotional spoke of wanting the Lord to give us a detailed map of what is to come in life, and how all that he gives us is his presence, his power and his promise for along the way. We are trying to focus on this more as we go.
  3. Our first coffee break is at some plastic lawn furniture set up for Pieterpaders, right beside a campground. As we settle in, the breeze whips up the aroma, and we realize we are also near a manure pit. It was hard to enjoy my cup of tea and buttered koek with that smell behind us. At lunch we try to find a better place to eat, but just when we are looking is when there are no benches. We walk and walk and finally settle on a wet log. It’ll do.
  4. Wondering whether we have miscommunicated with Tom’s parents, we finally connect with them on the trail. It is nice to see them again, since the wedding. And now begins the opportunity to exercise both our limited English/Dutch skills. It goes surprisingly well! We had an in-depth conversation about Gog and Magog and the last days (as best we could) after reading Ezekiel 38 together.
  5. They live on an estate where they work with/for the landowner. Their home is an old farmhouse/barn that needs work. They are working hard to modernize it, but also to make themselves totally self-reliant, generating their own energy and food and heat, etc. They are both very smart people. They also know the value of every leaf and blade of grass. ‘Here, put this in your mouth (flower of staining nettle), it tastes good’. It tasted… And did not sting on the inside of my mouth, but a little touched my lip). They showed us the estate, and the birds and the plants, and what was good for blisters.
  6. We walked 19k today, another good day.

Leaving Vorden

Fields and trees

And moats around castles

The only bench we could find

Meeting Jankees and Corrie

Where they live, on an estate where he works

The estate where he works

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