Summer Holiday 2019 – Part the First

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    Arrival

    Please be aware there will be mention of alcohol later in this post, though not extensive. Should that be a problem, I suggest care while reading.

    We left a rainy home at about nine in the morning. Well, to be fair the rain had stopped so we didn’t have to lug cases in the wet, but it was still in the air and well, hot and muggy. Luck held though as the taxi met the train with about three minutes to spare and we were aboard before the rain came back.

    At St. Pancras station, we grabbed a brunch and took our time before boarding the Eurostar. It was quiet, with the rush being over and the place seemed relatively empty. We got aboard, sharing a carriage with every screaming child in Europe, and set off. I’m thankful I had earbuds and audio. Louise wasn’t so lucky, so she distracted herself by staring out of the window with her tongue lolling out and her tail wagging ninety to the dozen. I’ve never seen that behaviour in a cat girl before, so I was rather surprised.

    We got to Bruxelles-Midi after a few stops at Calais and Lille, and wandered around a bit like lost tourists¹ while we sought out tickets and connections. Eventually, with all done, we boarded a connection for Centraal Station – I almost wish we’d walked! What should have been a five minute journey seemed to take ages. The train moved at walking pace and stopped more often than a download over dial-up. Still, eventually we got there, and navigated a maze of cobbled streets to find our hotel.

    Exploration

    Having checked-in and explored our room, which was roomy and comfortable and OMG that bathroom!, we went out to investigate our surroundings. We’d checked the googles of course, but our sense of scale was obviously out. Everything seemed so packed together.

    We found ourselves a café where we had a meatball or too, well it is Belgium, and a beer. Very tasty it was too. We wandered back slowly, and sat outside the Little Delirium where we had a few more beers, mostly new ones to Louise, thought I’d had most of them before, if not exactly often. The power of Untappd helped me record the playlist, so to speak.

    By this time, we were getting a little unsteady so took a break of an hour or so back at the hotel, followed by a final foray back to the LD for one last nightcap.

    Morning

    Bruxelles can be noisy in the morning! We’d left a window open overnight because the air conditioner in the room is quite loud. Unfortunately the early morning workers were moreso. I think it was bin collection day or something, though it could just as easily been deliveries for the many cafés and bars around here. Nevertheless, we awoke and showered, and made a mug of some brown powder mixed with water that the hotel staff somehow mistakenly believe is an adequate substitute for coffee. Hint: it’s not!

    Anyway, there is a beer museum nearby, and an artisanal chocolate place, and a waffle factory. I’m sure there are a few other more cultured things to see too, once Louise can be enticed out of the bath…


    ¹ Actually we were lost tourists, but it’s probably best not to dwell on such things.

    Categories: Brussels, Holiday

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