26th June 2016. Lindby, Mid Öland, Sweden.

At breakfast we sat and watched two little rabbits hopping around and nibbling the grass with the two resident blackbirds hopping around near them then we heard a little bird making a racket and looked over to see a fat baby wagtail shouting at its parent for food, the poor adult was racing around collecting food and bringing it to the demanding baby, entertaining for us but exhausting for her I would imagine.

We were enjoying watching animals but felt it really was about time we got some exercise and explored the area so we worked out a circular route from the van.

As we got towards the top of the road we saw a man and his dog walking towards us and he called out to us.  He told us there was a police check at the top of the road, they were breathalyising people, he laughed and pointed at our bicycles.  As we cycled up to the junction the policeman smiled at us, said “Hej! Hej!” then pulled a car over.  Apparently they do a lot of road checks the day after the holidays because they get a lot of holiday makers coming over from the mainland who drink and drive.

It was a baking hot day.  The map said there were seven windmills in a row so we cycled down the road between two fields lined with wild flowers which meant a few stops to take photographs, it also meant Darren using me as a brake. I stopped because he spoke to me but it seems he was cycling along fiddling with the odometer on his bike and NOT looking where he was going so I ended up wearing him as an accessory!  I decided it was safer for me if he cycled in front of me after that but I hadn’t banked on him being a deaf git who couldn’t hear me shouting out to him that I’d stopped to take another photo,  it took him about half a mile before he realised I wasn’t with him any more!  I think the only way to deal with my errant husband is to buy a tandem!  He’s pointed out that if we did get a tandem he just knows I’ll be sitting on the back taking photos while he does all the pedalling, that sounds perfect to me!  Apparently years ago when my father was a young man he took his girlfriend Rita out on his tandem, he thought it was unusually hard going and discovered why when a young boy shouted out “Oi!  Mister!  She ain’t pedalling!” So it seems you’re a bit of a fool if you choose to sit at the front!

It was interesting to see the windmills, we hadn’t been that close to a windmill.  There was an information board which had a section written in English which was handy.  The windmills could be moved around to face into the wind and the handles looked like they were made from HUGE branches.  There are so many windmills sitting empty on Öland, it’s a shame they aren’t utilised in some way, maybe as holiday accommodation, because people love staying in unusual buildings.

We cycled on when a car full of people arrived.  We’d come out unprepared as usual, nothing to eat and nothing to drink (even though it was extremely hot) so we were very pleased when not far up the road we saw the unexpected but very welcome sign for a café in a motor museum, Störlinge Lantbruks & Motormuseum, so we felt compelled to pop in there and sample their cakes (they were very nice!).  We thought while we were there that we’d go in and have a look around the museum which turned out to be rather small.  The building it was housed in was a beautiful piece of architecture made from glulam beams and it was interesting to see the exhibits (and scary that we recognised some of them from our childhood!) however it was quite expensive for the length of time it took to walk round even when we’d read all the information!   There was a large door open at the back of the museum so we assumed there was more to look at outside but all that was out there were our bicycles!

Our next stop was a church which was very pretty but as it was Sunday we thought there might be a service going on so we didn’t go in to see the fresco.

We cycled off up the road and I suddenly realised I’d lost my sunglasses so Darren gallantly offered to go back and look for them (he was either being gallant or worried that if I went back I’d spend ages taking more photos…… I’ll go for gallant!).  When he returned I was disappointed to see he hadn’t got them in his top pocket and I said “Oh they weren’t there!”  He grinned and gestured to the top of his head where they were perched!  I think I might need a new prescription for my glasses, I’m obviously as blind as a bat!   We had a short cut worked out just after the church but we couldn’t see any roads on the right hand side so we kept on cycling, we had a slight detour when I came up with the idea that it would be nice to go down to the sea, the farm track was SO bumpy it was almost impossible to cycle on AND it was downhill, we went about a third of the way then thought “blow this for a game of dominoes” turned round and cycled back to the road standing up to save our sore backsides!

The only good thing I can say about missing the short cut was that as we cycled up the road we shouldn’t have been on we saw a large bird of prey sitting on a tree stump next to the road and it took off and flew across in front of our bikes, it may have been my elusive buzzard, who knows but it was great to see it at such close quarters.   When we arrived back at Lindby Boden the shop was open, apparently Viveka opens it every day after the midsummer celebrations which was lucky for us because we were able to pop in for coffee, cake, ice cream and a moan about how hard my saddle was and how sore my backside was!  Viveka said she thought she might have a saddle in the Loppis and although she went to have a look (which was no mean feat considering how large the Loppis was) she wasn’t able to find it but I appreciated the thought.   We were sad to see the Norwegians had left when we got back, I wanted to thank them properly for the trouble they’d gone to with all the information they’d written down for us.  It would have been nice to sit with a coffee and have a proper chat.  When we’d finished our cake and ice cream we went back to the van to work/blog, Darren was stuck in the van and I sat outside in the sun, I definitely got the better deal there.


Click the link below for Störlinge Lantbruks & Motormuseum:


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