Last week rocket boy took part in the local avondvierdaagse. This is four days of early evening walking – either 5km or 10km every night. Parents have to go along too, so I did two nights and my husband should have done the other two. But he only did one in the end as one night was cancelled because of storms.

All the children wore their school T shirts (though about half the schools have orange ones, which doesn’t help so much) and run backwards and forwards up the line, so probably end up walking twice as far as they need to. The traditional treat while you go round is half a lemon with a peppermint (or more) on top, all tied together with a piece of muslin. And the children got to eat lots of sweets on the way round, so they were very happy.

The last night everyone was accompanied by marching bands (though three schools went the wrong way and had to be brought back to their correct place in the column) so all in all it was very gezellig. Though with the lack of sleep rocket boy had because of it we are still recovering! Friday was a difficult day for him at school.

For more information and another view of the event see this Amsterdam mamas article

If you want to go crazy then you can also do Wandelvierdaagse (walk 10km, 20km, 30km or 40km every day for four days) or Zwemvierdaagse (swim 250m, 500m or 1000m every day for four days).


  1. What a great–and funny, as you describe it–tradition. I’m all for anything that gets kids off the couch and away from smartphones, computers, TVs for a few hours. Especially when it’s a community building activity like this one. Your posts about Dutch life offer those of us across “the Pond” interesting views of other ways to live.

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