Thursday, August 7, 2014

Bruges, Belgium

Day 8 - 09.11.13
We arrived in Brussels, Belgium the night before to our wacky apartment (I'll post about that later). Bruges was the first on the list — an hour train ride from where we were staying. We woke up early and took the first train to make a day out of it. I didn't bring enough cold weather clothes on the trip, so I had to layer up. I may have looked ridiculous and was still cold and wet, but at least it was something.

Everyone speaks Dutch in Bruges (it's closer to the Netherlands), whereas mostly French is spoken in Brussels (it's closer to France). I learned this the hard way... I didn't think to bring a Dutch-English dictionary, so I was completely hopeless trying to communicate. Belgium is known for its chocolate, beer, waffles, and fries. I tried to ask a storekeeper where to find the best fries in town. I kept saying, "French fries," and the man looked insulted. Fries originated in Belgium, and claiming that they are French is like a slap in the face to the Belgian man. After some time (mostly hand gestures and loud, slow pronunciation), we got to common ground and he showed us where to get some good frietjes

Random sightings & doings:
- Ate passionfruit ice cream despite the weather (I can never say no to passionfruit — my favorite)
- Licked a stamp while mailing off a postcard
- Lots of bicyclists (Portland would be proud)
- Hardcore grandma riding a vespa (a hilarious sight especially in the pouring rain)
- Had my first Belgian waffle and chocolate

Bruges was an adorable place with stunning architecture. Wandering on the cobblestone streets gave the feel of being back in time in some Dutch town. I only wish the weather was better, so we could have enjoyed it more. Luckily, in Brussels (up next) we got to see Belgium in good weather.

"Travel is the only thing you buy that makes you richer."


No comments: