Departure Delayed

West Australian, Perth, 18 jun 1946

WestAustralianPerth 18jun1946

Author’s Reunion With Wife

It will come as pleasant news to all those who have read Jan van Apeldoorn’s book “Departure Delayed” to learn that his wife Rita, who shared his adventures in Nazi-occupied Europe and Java, attacked by the Japanese, but whom he had to leave behind at Bandoeng, came safely through the occupation and has been recuperating with her husband in Sydney.

M. Jan van Apeldoorn, whose real name is Jan Nils Vogt, wrote “Departure Delayed” after his arrival in Australia from Java and it was first published in 1943. In it he tells the story of the perilous journey through Europe which he and his wife made together (mostly on a bicycle-built-for-two), to escape the Nazi occupation. The keynote of the book is the companionship with which they shared adventures and discomfort – a companionship which made the sad parting, on which note the book ends, all the more poignant.

When Mr Vogt was ordered out of Java on official business, he did not anticipate that conditions woud be such that his wife’s evacuation would become an impossibility, and he himself at that time expected to return. But the end came in Java soon after he reached Australia, so his book was dedicated to “My brave companion Rita, for whom departure was once too often delayed.” At the time of writing it, , he had no clue to her fate, in fact he concludes by saying, “Ships that escaped from Tjilatjap were heavily bombed … all that is known is that several which left Tjilatjap were sunk, presumably with all hands. Whether Rita was on board one of those ships I do not know. I do not even know whether she got away from Bandoeng.”

Fortunately, perhaps as things turned out, Mrs. Vogt did not get away, but was interned in Batavia and reached Australia safely after the liberation. But once more her departure is to be delayed. Her husband has left on his return to Holland, but she cannot get a ship until next month.

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Signed by the author

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The route

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The author is the son of photographer August Vogt

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Under the eye of the Martini

Route

Groningen from the outside, from the South-West to the North-East, around the West, always under the eye of the Martinitoren.

New houses in Eelderwolde, just in the province of Drenthe.

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From the Kraanland, (crane land), former marsh, the most Western part of the Gorecht, the jurisdiction around the former King’s court in Groningen, the Martinitoren peaks above the tree line.

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Behind the flood fields of the sugar factory, where sediments in process water deposit.

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The sugar factory.

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City outskirts in the polder De Held in Liewerderwolde, part of the Frisian shire Middag (middle isle).

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Silhouette from the North West

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This small mound, erected 50 BC alongside a stream, is thought to have been the house place of a headman Liewe, after whom this place was called Liewerd (mound of Liewe), and the former peat moor to the South Liewerderwolde.

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Canal crossing with locks and pumping station.

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A Groninger tjalk heading for the Wadden Sea

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Friendly bull with other cattle

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Along the former meanders of the river Hunze under the eye of the Martinitoren, close to the triple country point of Middag, Gorecht, and Ubbega (upper shire).

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Water mill in a former river meander that has been lowered by the mediaeval removal of the upper layer of clay for bricks.

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Many lines in the province converge on the Martinitoren.

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Silhouette from the North.

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The following seven church towers have all been photographed from the same point …

… three towers in Bedum. The thick slanted one is the oldest of all, dating from the 11th century AD, when this was the pilgrimage of Saint Walfridus …

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… Noordwolde …

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… Zuidwolde …

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… and Martinitoren and Akerk in Groningen.

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Zuidwolde along the canal Boterdiep, which, as the name shows, carried dairy to the market in Groningen.

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There is a café over there.

Larger pictures

Tour to Warffum

route

Klein Wetsinge

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This pump station became necessary after the natural gas exploitation caused the province to sink. There is a passage for canoes.

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The old entrance road of the village of Winsum

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Here one can see the start of the elevation of the old mound on which Winsum was built

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The church …

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.. with the Calvinist optimism showing at the doorway …

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… this part of the roof is still original 13th century, with the barrel style roof tiles …

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… the old graveyard is in deep shadows.

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The bridge that connects the two mounds of Winsum and Obergum …

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… leading to the centre market …

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… where I had lunch in the Golden Carp, anno 17th century.

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Winsum was on the way to become a city in the 11th century, when they got mint right, market right, and the typical urban order of the Dominicans founded a monastery there. It was written that its mound was so large that there were trees, otherwise unknown in brackish Frisia.

But the city of Groningen frustrated that ambition, as they wouldn’t tolerate another city downstream of the river Hunze.

One of the secondary streets ascending to the centre.

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The ruins of an old brick furnace between Winsum and Onderdendam.

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The tiny village of Onderdendam consists mostly of stately building of the united water boards that resided here at this junction of drainage canals.

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On the road towards Warffum, still between the pastures.

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There is Warffum on the horizon, on the Hogeland – high land – the former coastal ridge of sabulous clay that is perfect for high yield agriculture, with here a wheat field.

 

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Ruinous farm shed.

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The village of Warffum, the largest mound village of the province.

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Warffum has its own high school – with all levels, including a classical education – which serves all of the North of the province.

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Farm with wheat field, and an old sea dike at the horizon. Today there is more land beyond that dike.

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A large potato-mash factory amidst potato fields.

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The Breedenborg, a 16th century mansion.

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These bins are place along the bicycle routes, so people can throw in their garbage while cycling along. They are very effective.

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On the mound of Rasquert, next to Baflo.

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The harbour of Baflo.

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On the way back I followed a very dark, very large rain cloud. On the outskirts of Groningen I saw the result of the short but heavy showers, that left the warm tarmac steaming with vapour.

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Larger format of the pictures

 

Midwolde

Route

Leaving Groningen towards the West

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Through the Peizermaden (meadows of Peize) towards the Peizerdiep (deep – waterway – of Peize)

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Blaarkop cows in front of the sugar factory of Hoogkerk

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The spire of the church of Midwolde can be seen at 10 km distance, on the horizon, just right of the centre. To the right the sail of a boat on the Leekstermeer (lake of Leek).

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Grebe in the Onlanden along the Peizerdiep

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Bicycle road over the Roderwolderdijk – the late 12th century sea-dike running all the way to Friesland.

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Sandebuursedijk

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Livestock in the fields of Leutingewolde

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Dairy cattle near Sandebuur.

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Closer to Midwolde

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Midwolde Church seen from the South.

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Fulling’s painting of Midwolde. This perspective from the North-East is blocked today by trees and farms.

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Lutjegast

Route

Today’s trip was to the village of Lutjegast (Little sandridge).

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To the right of this ancient dike was a tidal creek that over time has completely filled up with clay sediment. The trees on the horizon are on the dike that contained this creek from the North.

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These dairy cows have their own road to the farm in the back, where they can go for a self service milking session.

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Enumatil (Bridge of Enuma) at the Hoendiep, the old canal leading from Groningen to Friesland.

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The sand ridge of the villages Noordhorn and Zuidhorn

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Briltil

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The Colonelsdiep, the part of the canal that was dug in the 1570’s, during the 80 Years War, to enable traffic between Groningen and Friesland while the old route over sea was blocked by the enemy navy.

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Colonelsdiep through the wet peat meadows.

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A bit to the South the very low sand ridge to Lutjegast starts, here with corn just coming through.

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Chestnut tree starting to flower

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Remains of a natural stream.

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Natural gas well.

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Drainage canal.

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Potato field at the end of the ridge of Lutjegast

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The ridge of Lutjegast seen from the new bridge over the enlarged canal

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Van Starkenborgkanaal, the current shipping connection to Friesland and Holland.

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To the West, with the shipyard at the border of the province.

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Larger natural gas well near the border with Friesland

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Return over another section of the old sea dike.

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This farm is renewing it reed roof. This traditional roofing is unaffordable for most farmers today, so I suspect this building has been bought by rich people to live in.

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The outskirts of the village of Grijpskerk, with unfortunate architecture from the 1960’s.

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The ridge of Noordhorn, coming from the West. These fields are the location of the Battle of Noordhorn

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This farm is on clay ground, suitable for the cultivation of wheat.

There is the usual windscreen of trees on the West side, the house, with a connecting kitchen to the large barn.

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Detour for bicycles in the village, as the bridge over the canal is currently being replaced.

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While cars have to take a detour over the next bridge, a temporary ferry has been deployed for cyclists.

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Construction work on the bridgeheads.

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The new bridge arc that will be placed once the lifting mechanism  has been constructed.

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