He Hustles To Brussels–Part I

On Monday after work, 2 co-workers and I hopped a train to Brussels.  We needed to catch a train from St. Pancras train station.

On the cab ride there, I said, "Oh, we're almost there.  It's just up around the corner to the left."  The two other people in the cab who aren't the cabbie, look at me and ask me how I could possibly know that, when they had no idea where we were.  I knew because St. Pancras is right across the street from King's Cross (Platform 9 3/4) and on the walk back, I remember passing and shooting this building with the awesome blue trim.


We took the Eurostar train, and after a little confusion with my ticket and seat, we were off.  Most of the ride we were in tunnels or trenches, and didn't have a very good view of the countryside.  And it was getting dark.  And they gave us this REALLY NICE snack plate.

What I'm getting to is, I didn't realize we were in the Channel Tunnel until the said "Welcome to France."  Ooops.  I had been psyched to ride through the tunnel, and totally missed it.

Just to be clear – my trip to Brussels was a week to 10 days before the bombings in the subway & airport.  And the Geneva portion of my trip was canceled.  They weren't ready, so I put in an extra day in London, and got to head home a day or two earlier than planned.

Like I've said, I've been to Brussels before on a previous trip.  I'd done a little sightseeing, but not much and it was 1/2 a life time ago.  So, I was looking forward to getting out and seeing the sights.

My room at the Renaissance hotel in Brussels.  Nice room, but I preferred the apartment in London.

Rooms 'R Us!
As I was leaving, I thought it would be good to say "Goodbye"

During the day, it was pretty much work, work, work.  I made it out on lunch.  A European lunch.  Meaning that they took forever, and when you ordered a Diet Coke with lunch, you got a microscopic bottle.  And no ice.

This sandwich is my HERO. Walking around Brussels, I saw a number these barricades and soldiers.  And this was a week before the bombing.  The city was already on alert.
This the lobby of my office. They had these ugly green chairs to match the walls.
I did try to eat somewhat healthy while I was there. And I avoided the desert table.

After work, the group of us would go to dinner.  One night it was in the Grand Place (Plas). 

Théâtre Royal du Parc. Across the road is the Belgian Senate.
St. Michael and St. Gudula Cathedral.  Man does Cora's camera take great pictures at night, or what?
Mooooo! Street art or graffiti?  The eye of the beholder.
This is a great name for a restaurant. This is above the Roy's Cave below.
Koninklijke Sint-Hubertusgalerijen or Galeries Royales Saint-Hubert.  A covered shopping arcade. The Grand Place lives up to its name.
Beautiful old buildings surrounding the Grand Place.
LeRoy D'Espagne - The King of Spain.  A cute bar on the northwest corner of the Grand Place. Oh, Chimay, I remember you well.
Like I said, something about neon on this trip. Fire good!  Fire make room warm!
I'm just hanging out with a bunch of pole-axes. And this Roy is on the southwest corner.
And the co-workers walk back across the market.

The second night we stayed a little closer to the hotel.  We did a little walking around, and then went chocolate shopping.  Afterwards, we went to a restaurant near the hotel.  At the restaurant, we ordered tap water for the table.  The exact response we got from the waiter / manager whatever was, "We don't do that."  REALLY?

Was considering this for Cora, but the lunch box contained too little chocolate.

Luxembourg Square, right by the hotel.

What did I say about me and neon this trip? I'm drinking "Sudden Death".  A lambic.  Normally a favorite, but not my cup of tea.
This is where we were told that they don't serve ice water. And this is the look you get when you say that.
I had a nice dinner.  And Belgium is known for its fries… pommes frites. But we are all enjoyed a nice meal on our last night
If you are going to have just one, make it a good one. Back at Luxembourg Square.  I needed a another picture to fill out the table.

And then, there's the last night in Brussels, when I'm running wild, trying to visit everything in one night…

Next time.

1 comment:

Cora said...

The Smurfs you picked out are much cuter than the lunchbox anyway. :-)