On my last full day in Belgium, I made plans to meet with another friend of mine for lunch. Lena was a dance friend of mine from years ago in Perth. She was now living in Belgium with her husband and 3 small children, and enjoying life as a Mum. I made my way to her home just outside of central Brussels around lunchtime.
She prepared a tasty aromatic Indian meal for lunch and we caught up on the past as the little ones circled close by. With the sun shining in the blue sky, finally it was a good day for sight seeing. Lena organised herself and we were off into the day, free, unencumbered, and ready to walk and talk our way around Brussels.
It is such a treat to have a tour guide and better still a friend to show you around a new city. Big cities can overwhelm me, I get tired of walking around in circles and despise feeling lost. So it is always a treat for a solo traveller to trot around a new city as a pair.
Lena pointed out all the main attractions, including the grand plaza full of ornately decorated 14th century buildings, and a cute little statue of a little boy pissing. Apparently wars were fought over this statue, which is surprising as it is quite small. Strangely this little boy has over 850 costumes which he is dressed up in throughout the year. There are a few people dedicated to his cause, of sewing costumes and dressing the ‘Little boy pissing’. How bizarre! But very cute!
I had my first try of a Belgium waffle on this day. I made the hard choice of toppings and settled for strawberries and Nutella. Now this may sound odd, but this is the first waffle I have ever had! I was surprised that the base was so dense, more like sweet bread. I was expecting more of a light doughy pancake type mix. The strawberries were sweet and juicy and the best part! It is worth trying for sure. Just hard deciding between all the delicious toppings.
We went in and out of many shops, I made some small purchases and some bigger ones. I found a new watch in the swatch shop that I fell in love with. Excellent customer service swayed my usual conservative purchasing choice, so I bought it! Did you know you can now go into any swatch shop with your swatch watch and they will replace the battery and buff the clock face of any surface scratches? Isn’t that a cool level of service? I was very impressed. My original swatch I had on my wrist was buffed of its scratches much to my joy, and I had a new watch ready to go, I was a very happy customer.
I have always loved swatch watches for their colour, eccentric designs and bright energetic appeal. I have worn them on and off my whole life and now have bought 2 in less than a year. Love them! Lena also bought a little watch for her daughter, which was very cute.
After a few art gallery visits, and a long coffee break and some very in depth connected cathartic conversation; it was time to get back on the train again. It was so nice to see my friend Lena, I really enjoyed our day out together and look forward to meeting up again possibly in Broome to assist with a dance project she is working on. Very exciting! More on that in the future, but a little hint… It is a great opportunity for me to photograph and write for this international dance event, yay! Happy dance!
I made my way back to Antwerp, and back to my temporary home with Sylvie. Oh, it was so nice to stay with my friend, I didn’t want to leave! We enjoyed a nice fresh salad for dinner, and settled down for a few games of Rumi Kub and some reading for the evening. My night time activities are much more relaxed these days. Especially since I don’t drink anymore, the motivation to venture out at night time is virtually non-existent! And that’s the way I like it!
After a restful sleep and nice warm shower, it was bag re-packing time and another travel day ahead. The plan next was to bus it to Düsseldorf then train to Nuremberg. Germany here we come!
I look forward to sharing more of my adventures with you on Germany in the next post.
“It is not goodbye, but see you next time!”