3 September, The Netherlands – ‘All Over The Place – Europe’
If you’re ever accused of being a witch, then make sure you get yourself down to the town of Oudewater. From the 15th-17th Century it was the premiere destination for anyone wishing to clear their name of involvement in the dark arts. This is because witches were thought to be lighter than the average human being (so they could take off on their broomsticks), and Oudewater had a very large set of accurate scales. A certificate from Oudewater was enough to clear your name, and throughout its entire history every single person weighed on the scales was declared innocent of witchcraft.
We headed out there from our hotel on the outskirts of Amsterdam, driving through typically flat Dutch countryside (when a Dutch person sees their first hill it must blow their mind), eventually reaching the picturesque canal strewn town, and after a quick bit of filming where Iain and I loudly accused each other of being a witch we settled down to lunch. The place clearly flogs its witchcraft connection for all it’s worth as the menu contain “sandwitches” and other pun strewn delicacies.
Our contact at the scales was Jeanette, who clearly spends a lot of time entertaining children in the ways of witch interrogation. She gave Iain and I a terrifying on camera interview, twisting our words at every turn and constantly declaring us to be witches. To prove our innocence we demanded to be weighed on the scales. I was found to be innocent (after much ridiculing for my pointy witch-like nose) but Iain cracked under pressure and fled the scales on a broomstick confessing to his crime of witchcraft. The first witch to be uncovered there in the whole of the scales’ history!