Weekend in Texel: Finding refuge

I guess each of us has that one place where we run away to when our spirit is at their lowest; a sort of refuge where we know we would be healed.

My travel schedule had been crazy and I don’t mean that in an exciting way. My body has not been able to recover from my weekend trip in Paris so when I flew to Stockholm, my stress level shoot up. This usually manifests in mouth sores. It’s difficult to eat or talk and at the end of the day, it makes me very tired and irritated. But life goes on and that means running after ships and deadlines almost everyday.  So if we’re friends and I am not answering your messages or calls, I am probably too tired, too sick or too busy to do so. Or I can’t talk.

Crazy  schedule also means spending less time with Robin. Between the work grind and weekend trips, his wedding gigs and his new job, there’s very little time to go on a date or even have a long chat in the evening. So we decided to get away at the first opportunity and booked ourselves a weekend in the Dutch island of Texel.

Adobo dinner on the road

Thankfully I could work home on Friday and the hours I would have otherwise spent travelling to work, I’ve used it sleep. I’ve been sleeping a lot to help my body recover faster.  Or at least trying to. Sometimes resorting to sleeping pills. My mouth was so painful that even drinking water was excruciating.

But I was very much looking forward to the weekend trip in Texel and  didn’t let my exhaustion dampen my mood any longer.

When Robin came home at 6PM, we immediately jumped on the car and headed our merry way to Den Helder. From Rotterdam, it was approximately two hours ride and luckily there was not much traffic jam. We even had to wait half an hour for the 8:30PM boat to Texel. In the car, my poor husband hungrily devoured the adobo I cooked earlier in the afternoon.

Exactly 20 minutes after sailing, we docked on Texel and 10 mins later checked in at Fletcher Hotel de Koog. I couldn’t really tell much about this hotel except that it’s overpriced for its rooms and amenities. But at least the staff were friendly.

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We headed out and surveyed the bars and restaurants along Dorpstraat outside our hotel. It was already late and we were exhausted so when we passed by tapas and cocktail bar Bodega 59, we walked in, lured by the anticipation of authentic Spanish delight. The calamares was bland and the waiter, although friendly was also very distracted. But we enjoyed sitting by the bar, drinking our margarita and long island and watching the Dutch national football team do what it does best – scrambling to their feet to win a game at the last minute – this time from Kazakhstan.

A walk on the beach

We planned to run and bike around the island on Saturday but didn’t get around doing either. It was raining and I wasn’t feeling very well (payback for drinking that margarita). Instead we drove to Ecomare to see the sea lions but I changed my mind at the last minute because I did not want to see them in captivity. Instead we walked around that area to get a glimpse of them in the wild. That was my bright idea. We learned later that you need to go on a boat tour in order to see them on the sand banks.

Although we actually did set out to the beach to look for them. It was early, very chilly and I couldn’t concentrate on anything except the pain in my mouth which extends to my ears. But it turned out, a walk on the beach was exactly what I needed that day.

Scenes at the beach
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We started walking from Paal 17. There weren’t so many people around yet, only a handful of old folks walking their dogs and a lot of sea gulls, hundreds of them perhaps. The North Sea was moving gently, rolling small perfect waves to kiss the brown sand, waves that a beginner surfer would enjoy. We walked silently, enjoying the sea in our own little way. The fresh breeze of the North Sea enveloped me like a woolen blanket on a winter evening. I took it all in like someone who had been in a vacuum for a long time, hungry for air. Few meters of walking already did me good. I began to relax and although the pain didn’t go away, I didn’t get mad at it or myself or at Robin. The pain was part of the healing process and it’ll eventually go away.

The sea does that to me.

I guess each of us has that one place where we run away to when our spirit is at it’s lowest; a sort of refuge where we know we would healed

To be continued…