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Bob Burrow

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English Channel 2017

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Bob Burrow

Stroopwaffle, Dutch pancakes and aged Gouda cheese are a few of the edibles that one indulges in while in Amsterdam. For spring break this year we headed to Europe for a mini European tour; Amsterdam and London. If I was going to continue to enjoy the aforementioned Dutch delicacies and save room for some English ale and fish and chips I needed some additional exercise.

It wasn’t like we were sedentary or anything as we hit the ground running in Amsterdam with a bike tour and then continued to walk and walk and walk around this beautiful city from our houseboat admiring the bridges, canals and boats. I needed something more and that was finding a zwembad.

A little research led me to the Het Marnix a short 20 minute walk from our houseboat. For a quick moment, I considered jumping off the deck and swimming in the canal but the water looked a little dirty.

(Our House boat @ Da Costakade 116)

(The view from our deck)

I got there at 7:00am sharp for the opening. I am sure glad I did as by the time I figured out how to maneuver around the co-ed locker room, the tiny changing stalls and using the funky security bracelet to operate my locker the pool filled up.

(Funky orange changing stalls)

By the time I got to the pool deck there were only a couple of lanes that made sense for me to swim the one that said snelle baan and the one that said borst crawle. I chose borst crawle. It worked out ok. There were about five of us in the lane of varied speeds. There was some changing of strokes, passing and waiting on the wall to make it work but that was ok. Lap after lap for only 3,000 meters I kept wondering what do snelle baan and borst crawle mean? Later Google translate solved the mystery. Snelle baan means “fast job” and borst crawle means “chest crawl”. I trust that means front crawl. That likely explains the odd looks I got when I swam breaststroke and backstroke. The reader should know I did show good international lane etiquette and did not hold up the lane when I wasn’t doing borst crawle. I guess I could have swam in the other lane but, I wasn’t feeling very snelle~they weren’t going that fast anyways ; )

It wasn’t an intense workout at all but, it was enough to wake me up a bit and ready me for a day of sightseeing and looking for the perfect Stroopwaffle!

Looking forward to going back to Amsterdam again. I really liked the canals and all the bikes. Maybe the next time I will do a canal swim!

As they say on the Het Marnix website veel zwemplezier gewenst!

Much swimming pleasure desired!

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