This weekend we did an historic excursion to the Biesbosch national park leading us back to the forgotten lifestyle of the griendworker: the men who harvested and collected the willow branches. The men, mostly catholic from surrounding villages like Drimmelen and Made left their families during the weekdays to sleep in circumstances rarely seen in our part of the world these days.
When watching the video of the pics, you may think this is nature you see. No. Every square meter of this area has been cultivated by humans. Trees, trenches, water systems. Only the beaver lodgeBeav is non-human 😉
Before the days of the tie wrap, the men also used willow branches to tie up their piles. The technique to fold these wraps is shown by our guide Toon on this video. In the galleries you will see pictures of:
- boat trip from Drimmelen to The Deene Plate, where it all happened
- our excursion group, overcrowded by students from Utrecht.
- guide Toon and captain/host Jan, both grandchildren of original griendworkers.
- The hut (keet), restored to 1934 conditions