16-Jul-2000 -- Thistles.
In the month of July 2000 the record for least sunshine in Belgium's
meteorological history was shattered: 93 hours, 20% of which were recorded
on the 1st and 31st! So when a hint of a clearing appeared on that week-end
afternoon, Michèle and I quickly decided to go out and do something --
which happened to be visit N51 E05.
It is one of the two unofficial Belgian confluences and the one closest to
home (less than 40 km). It is located in Zichem, a little Flemish village.
Getting there was easy enough. We found on the edge of the village a
farm road that lead us to the confluence. In an adjacent field, we were greeted
by an alarm cow. She mooed for as long as we were in sight (maybe she had
seen our report on N51 E03, hey, you never know).
We found the confluence in a patch of fallow land next to a potato field
on the south bank of the Demer River. The place was soaked from the recent
rains and full of thistle, some over 2 meters (6+ feet) high.
We came back home taking the little country roads as the clouds were