A last look at the meeting 2021

A last look at the meeting 2021

The 26th edition of the Gumboots and Overalls meeting is over. Since the 2020 edition was cancelled, many fans were looking forward to this year's edition. In the end, there were around 25 participants. Once again, the weather played along. We spent a dry weekend. Only the ground was soggy, but we are well equipped for that with our boots. The only downer was that the forest road leading to the hut was poorly passable in places due to the bad weather of the past weeks. Although it didn't rain, the water was still running on the last section of the path leading down to the chalet. I have never seen anything like this in the last fifteen years. On the other hand, the ground around the chalet was dry. Despite a persistent breeze, the air was pleasantly temperate.

Around 4 pm, the first participants arrived. And two hours later we were almost complete. As always, there was the German-speaking group on one side and the French-speaking group on the other. The conversations went well. Some with a can of beer and others with a glass of white wine in hand. That is the difference between the two cultures. The only thing they have in common is a passion for rubber boots and overalls. And as is so often the case, around the barbecue, previous inhibitions fall away. Some speak their French, others their German, and it all ends in animated discussions about all kinds of topics. While some talk, others go behind the hut to have a good time.

The boot of the meeting, the chest wader, was not really worn. Only a few were in waders. But no matter, the important thing is to be among people who share the same passion. Next year I will do it again with a different kind of boots.

The night falls softly on the meeting place. The lights of the houses around the lake are reflected on the brownish water stirred up by the breeze. The heavy clouds coming from the east indicate a thunderstorm or at least a rain shower. Well, nothing of the sort. Half an hour later, the clouds gave way to a starry sky. What a relief. The cooler air in the background now dampens the boys' enthusiasm. They prefer to stay sheltered from the never-slackening breeze and whisper, a coffee there, a beer or other drink there. Time passes at a crazy pace. Around two in the morning, the silence of the night falls over the chalet. Then, one by one, we hear each other's snoring. It must be said that the wooden walls of the chalet are not very insulating.

Early in the morning, after a few hours of poor sleep, a bright sun greets us in the new day. Time to boil the water for coffee, the boys come back from the dormitory one by one.

Time for breakfast and the first ones are already on their way home. By half past ten everything is tidy and clean, thanks to the help of the good souls who are happy to lend me a hand. With one last turn of the key, the door to the 26th meeting closes. Thoughts are already flying to next year's meeting.

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