We left Osnabrueck yesterday to outrun the weather and get to Endelave, a small Danish island. Jens & Katrin Toft have a farm there, and cut an airstip beside their orchard 46 years ago. The airstrip is bounded at one end by sand dunes and the sea and the other by a road with ditches either side and his neighbour's barley field on the other side of the road. The landing instructions warn you to avoid the neighbour's barley, but I found the Piper archer with a broken nose leg from landing on the road and driving through the ditch an even more resounding warning about landing too early.
|gratuitous shot of wind turbines, Jan's mother complains that there are not enough, but I have never such a large concentration, this is just one patch of dozens scattered across Niedersachsen.|
|coming in to land at Endelave|
When we arrived we had afternoon tea with Jens and family (including some of their grandchildren). I suppose I shouldn't have been surprised that the Danish actually do eat Danishes. These were a lot nicer than the ones you get in the frozen aisle of the supermarket. Everyone we've met here so far has been incredibly nice and offered some great suggestions as to where to go. Jensens cousin in Copenhagen has an airstrip too, which will will definitely be looking up, as our other option, Roskilde really is a difficult connection by public transport.
Jens is very passionate about flying and machines, and look after what must be at least 50 bikes that they lend to visiting aviators to see the island. Jens repairs bits that I didn't even know existed on the bikes, which is very impressive and has painted all his bikes them red. Jens and Katrin both speak perfect German and excellent English. Meeting them reminded me that I need to work on learning a few more languages, at will at least pick up a smattering in the different countries I visit..Their former neighbours were around for afternoon tea too, and they drove an Ape (bee in Italian) – a little 3 wheeled 'truck' made by Piaggio – it's 2 stroke and has a front bench that is wide enough for 2 at a pinch, very cute and must be immmensely practical if you live in a village with narrow streets.
We put up our tent in the middle of their orchard – under hazlenut trees (much safer for the tent colouring than the nearby cherry trees!), not too close but not too far from the most attractive drop toilet I've ever seen - with a heart shaped seat and window in the door and an arrow going through the heart shaped door handle acting as a latch.
|Julian having dinner under a hazlenut tree|
Endelave itself is a tiny island, we rode from our westernmost tip to the easternmost tip today, to see the German beach: the best bathing beach on the island. There were some quite impressive kelp trees in the water, one of which had little barnacles growing from its leaves. Little family groups were dotted along the beach (3 within view of us, so not too busy), having picnics or lighting fires for bbqs: all very much like what we had seen of Denmark / southern Sweden on tv.
|cycling on Endelave, didn't take many pix|