A mid – morning start took us to through a lock and out of the Gouwe Canal into the Hollandse Ijssel River. Within seconds, Gratis felt the gentle current giving a helping hand and her speed increased slightly.

The rain had passed thankfully, but a chill wind swept the air and we were both well rugged. As each new cold front comes through, Bob and I have noticed the temperatures are gradually dropping.

A quiet day as far as traffic went, except for a pleasure craft well behind, we pretty much had the river to ourselves for an hour or so. Upon arrival at the junction with the Maas, however, that all changed as working barges commenced showing their heads.

This gave a laugh.

A nice bit of architecture.

On arrival at the outskirts of Rotterdam, water taxis raced to and fro across the waters, leaving in their wake a washing machine action that saw us grabbing on to whatever was closest.

Turning into Parkhaven, we radioed the Grote Parksluizen requesting entry. We discovered at that moment that the bridges with the lock don’t normally open and at 3.1m Gratis was too high to fit under the second. We were so fortunate, in that the kindly lock keepers took pity on us and very generously opened the second of the bridges, thereby allowing us passage into the inner harbour area.

Continuing onward, Bob soon turned our girl toward Oud Delfshaven and our intended mooring for the time we are here. One more radio call for the Mouterbrug to be opened, a short wait whilst the operator drove round to open it and we were soon through.

A mooring found, Gratis was nosed in bow first, and a helpful lady upon the pontoon assisted by taking and placing the lines around the mooring posts.

So, here we are in Rotterdam, a friendly and helpful place. We love it already!

A pair of Egyptian Geese landed on the roof of the haaven office this evening. This fella had a good old natter

and a bit of attitude!