It’s finally spring! And it may be good to spend some moments looking at people riding around all the lovely spring flowers. These weeks I’m publishing many city portraits and they sometimes provoke emotional responses. They also take a lot of time and effort to create, so why don’t we have a short intermission with some niceness.

Daffodils in Utrecht
Daffodils on Carnegiedreef in Utrecht, which will be the topic of one of my upcoming posts.

It is great to see that after a long winter with all its shades of grey the streets are finally beginning to show some colour again. It wasn’t a severe winter at all – we didn’t even get one day of snow in the areas where I spend most of my days – but it is still nice that we moved on to a new season. While winter was warmer than usual, the first week of spring was much colder than usual, with also almost no sun. It didn’t seem to harm the spring flowers. They still bloomed as usual. People also kept riding just as they usually do. Put the two together and there you have some very nice images, I think. I do hope the sun will come back a bit more soon and the temperatures will rise to normal levels. That would make things even better.

Father and daughter riding past a splash of purple crocusses.
Father and daughter riding past a splash of purple thanks to these nice crocuses.

This week’s spring cycling video

This is but a small post, but it is still a memorable one. This is my blog’s 400th published post! To do something special on that occasion, I made a map to show the locations of all my previous posts. I do already have a list of place names, but I am sure most names on that list mean very little to most of my followers. A map is much more helpful I would think. It was quite a task to pin every single one of those dots to the right location, but I think it was worth it. There aren’t exactly 400 pointers, because quite a number of my posts are about policies, which can’t really be connected to a specific location. Other posts are about more than one location, so they may have more pins. Where I made a ride I just looked where there wasn’t already a cluster of pins to make things not too crowded. I was quite pleased to see that I do already cover much of the Netherlands, even though it is quite obvious that ‘s-Hertogenbosch and Utrecht – the places where I live and work respectively – feature most on my blog.

A detail of the map. See the rest on this page.

I hope you enjoy investigating that map and thank you for your continued support. On to post number 500!

More daffodils in Utrecht. Planted around the trees of the now finished Mariaplaats in Utrecht.
More daffodils, planted around the trees of the now finished Mariaplaats in Utrecht.

9 thoughts on “Springtime!

  1. Spring is usually quite cold overall for cycling. In fact it can be cold into May! But it usually does not rain that much this time of the year, which is good for cycling.

    Here is something most people do not know about: Vast tulip fields are north and west/northwest of the city of Alkmaar: tulips as far as the eye can see. No tourists and quiet. The beaches are nearby, too. The highest sands dunes in the country are there as well. It seems the tulips in this area are cut later than in the traditional bulb region north of Leiden.

    Alkmaar is a quintessential small Dutch city where you can find everything you need. It is a great base for exploring the beautiful countryside by bicycle.

  2. Thank you for another nice video!

    Where in Utrecht are all those daffodils at 0:56 and 1:17 in the video? A foreign friend is coming over and I’d love to go there with her 🙂

  3. Congratulations on your 400th! You’re providing a great service to a lot of people. Many you probably never know about.

    The Dutch are amazingly skillful cyclists. And deceptively so because they’re so casual about it. For a long time now I’ve been studying the details of your videos. I see the Dutch do things I would never try for fear of hurting myself or at least making myself look like an idiot. (I ride every day and have logged over 1100 miles this year.)

    Look at around 1:25. The young man in the red jacket is pedaling forward with his left leg and backwards with his right! 🙂 It’s sort of like a ratchet. I’m going to give that a try tomorrow. If you never hear from me again…

    I’ve just converted a Peugeot road bike into a dutch cycle with tall handle bars (and Japanese components). The sensation is awesome. It’s like riding an SUV.

    Keep up the great work!

  4. I’m actually trying to learn a little bit of Dutch. Not very good progress, I just started, but the trickiest bit is how new phonemes work in Dutch. I’m trying to figure out how to pronounce letter G as if I was coughing up a hairball 😉 Also a tricky thing is that many words come from French, Latin and Dano-Norse. Of course English also comes from Old Fryslan and Old Germanic, but I have trouble deciphering sentences. Then again, you had no idea what most of what a toddler knew when you were learning English Mark. Any advice?

  5. Congratulations on your 400th posting! I am a recent new follower and really enjoy reading your thoughts and watching your videos regarding cycling. I look forward to your 500th as well.

  6. Very pleasant post and video. I find it nice to just have videos of the normal everyday infrastructure. I have seen a lot of your videos and just found your blog. I know it takes a lot of work to write up and edit both a blog and videos. Thank you for the views and info you give. I live about 600 kilometers due east of Vancouver BC Canada in a small city called Trail which is at a higher altitude so we are a few weeks behind you in warmer weather. But flowers will be up soon,

  7. Hey Mark, how did you get that map with all of the dots on it to be released publicly without releasing your email address? You emailed me yourself, so I have that but I’m not sharing that unless you want me to. I’m trying to blog without actually specifying my real name, let alone my house number, and I made a few maps myself as well, but I’d like it if I could figure out how to share it without tying a name or address to it.

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