In Weesp, I am a regular visitor to Boerenhofstede ‘de Overhorn’; here I enjoy the casual reception for a meeting or overnight stay, the view over the water and the meadows. Unbelievable that the city of Amsterdam had once thought of this area as a garbage dump. Fortunately, Jac. P. Thijsse managed to prevent this. From the meeting rooms you already get a taste of (water) bird paradise Naardermeer, the oldest Natural Monument in the Netherlands. Meanwhile, at the Boerenhofstede, sheep, horses and chickens scamper freely across the enclosed grounds; the orchard yields delicious organic apple juice and the tastiest fresh eggs.

Years ago, I traveled extensively for business meetings for a large manufacturer, with offices throughout Europe. From the airport by cab to a meeting place. Here you would sit for an entire day talking in a kind of aquarium in the heart of an anonymous office building. Hardly any time for lunch, afterward another 15 minutes to get dressed up and then on to dinner. After that, it was then a little “obligatory social” at the bar and then you dove into your king-size bed at an international hotel chain. I never got around to the dutiful sauna, pool and gym, because they did not open until you had already left and were already closed upon your return.

In short, I didn’t like it and soon made it a habit – if at all possible – to arrive at the destination a day early (or stay an extra night) and then enjoy preparing for a meeting from a pleasant location. Of course the seasoned meeting tigers still exist, but thankfully it has become common practice to include some individual “breaks” during a long day, with opportunity to get some air on your own.

And this is a wonderful place for that. From the Overhorn, you can cross the dike to stroll along the Vecht to Fort Uitermeer in a short time. The multicolored sunsets behind the meadows here are legendary. Here, on the western side of the preserve, Galloway cattle graze. These Scots are hardy and basically require little care. The boot trail beckons early risers: it leads to the Naardermeer.

Whether I arrive there rowing, biking or by sloop: I let the stress fall off me in these surroundings and enter the workshop or meeting (again) in good spirits, or leave my thoughts about it afterwards. Courtesy of Jac.P. Thijsse for preserving the vistas here.

By: a satisfied visitor