Our trip this morning took us across the Sneekermeer and Goaliingarypster waterways.

It was on these large lakes that the sailing races were taking place. For Gratis, it meant a game of ‘Dodgem Boats’ as she wove her way through the field whilst simultaneously keeping clear of the shallows.

At one stage, a quick 360 turn so as to not hinder this guy.

Through the flood gate,

past beautiful homes,

and the children learning to sail.

A small town, Joure was a delight to visit.

Positioned on the edge of the canal was the old Douwe Egberts coffee, tea and tobacco factory. The original shop – owned by Egbert Douwes and his wife, Akke Thijsses – was opened in 1753 and remained so until sometime during World War One. Initially selling goods that came from the colonies, the husband and wife team set in motion the beginning of what is today known as the coffee, tea and tobacco selling ‘Douwe Egberts Corporation’ (In Australia, we know them for the Maccona Coffee label).

The main canal was aligned with boats of all sizes and the marina practically full. Luckily for us, numerous cruisers were departing as we entered the city limits. Within easy walking distance of the main street, a berth was found and in went Gratis. Peaceful and calm, quite a contrast to the rock and roll of our previous three moorings.

A lazy meander along one of the longest small town shopping malls we have yet encountered enabled us to enjoy the highlights.

There was even a small push button operated punt for those wishing to save their shoes.

The slow ticking of a clock – it reminded me of the Captain Hook hunting crocodile from ‘Peter Pan’ – led me through a blue half door reminiscent of that from the fairy tale of ‘Hansel and Gretel’ into a room full of clocks. ‘You are welcome to wander: just go up the stairs, then down,’ were the words that greeted me. Time pieces of all shapes and sizes kept the observer occupied for some time.

I loved these decorations.

It was hunger that drove Bob out, and the two of us continued on our way. Lunch was superb! All food except the soups could be prepared gluten free. Mouth – watering, beef strips, salad and home style cooked chips were our choice of the day.