Monday, August 2, 2010

Goodbye Paris...Hello Brussels!

Although I've arrived back home, I'm going to continue blogging for the days that I didn't get to share while actually on the trip. It's a way for me to log our adventure and be able to share it with whoever wants to join me...

On Wednesday night we arrived in Brussels and made our way to our bed and breakfast. We were not too impressed with Brussels on our drive into the city but we unpacked, readied ourselves and ventured out into the Grand Place.

It was bustling with activity. There were vendors selling flowers, tourists, brasseries, was fun to just watch people again. Tourguide Tine pointed the way and we found out quickly that Brussels is a VERY easy place to navigate and you can walk to entire Grand Place area in less than an hour.
Oh Yes! I forgot to tell you that before we walked we got our fill of Belgium waffles and more Kriek cherry beer! Yummo!You could find these waffles everywhere! We didn't indulge often - we opted for the chocolate shops istead :)!
Ok...maybe you all are better read than I was about the Mannequin Piss??!! NO? Well, let me fill you in. There's this little...and I mean little - like less than 3 feet tall, statue of a child peeing in a fountain. Kristi was telling us about it because her friend Rhonda told her about it. It's a world famous statue and there were tons of people taking photos. The funny thing is...most of the people taking photos were Asian. It was funnier to watch them taking photos and looking embarrassed than it was to actually see it. It was not what I expected but it is a must on a trip to Brussels.
I think this photo is what Brussels is all about. It the home of the European parliment so there are new buildings with big money making businesses everywhere around the old part of the city. It's an interesting contrast.
Yup...that's us eating chocolate...again!
While we were walking and shopping we found this great jeans store. The guy was hillarious! He had brand name jeans for less than $50 that we tried on. He really wanted to make a sale to Tine. He kept telling her that her ass looked great! We laughed a lot but didn't buy anything.
As the day progressed, we saw these small little cafes transform into terrace dinner places. The back alleys were full of them! It smelled SO GOOD! We made our way to the metro stop to meet up with Mark, a friend of Tine's who is interning in Brussels, and then we were off to Leon's for Brussel's best mussel's.
O-M-G! These were the best mussels ever! We drank and ate and enjoying conversation with Mark for a few hours. We pretty much closed up the restaurant.

Thanks, Mark, for being game to our joking and sarcasm. You're a real trooper and I hope you venture to the Midwest when you come to the States in the spring.

On our way to a cab, the City Hall in the Grand Place transformed into a musical light show that was wonderful and beautiful!
Ahhh...Kristi and I read in the fliers that there was a daily flea market in Brussels and we were determined to get up early and go. We did and we weren't disappointed! We both ended up getting some great pieces to take home.
It was like a giant tag sale that included furniture, dishes, art, name was there!
We enjoyed Brussels but were ready to move on after one day. We didn't have the best experience at our B&B and we had seen all we could see in the city. Honestly, we were always a little uneasy outside of the Grand Place area. There's a lot of graffiti and just plain weird people. Mark wouldn't let us take the Metro home after our dinner. He said that even when there are big parties for the European Parliment that people are not allowed to walk's too dangerous. We were glad for his advice and we moved on to probably the prettiest towns on our vacations! More later....

Tuesday, July 27, 2010 trip experience

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