Brussels, Belgium, Europe
I wasn’t surprised that one of the girls in the dorm came back last night at 3:30am, and the other one didn’t come back at all. That was pretty much what I expected. I got up early and got ready to go out for the day. I left at the same time as Thea, so we went out for breakfast and walked to the train station together. She got on her train to Hamburg and I hopped on the first train to Bruges. Luckily they depart every 30 minutes, so I didn’t have to wait long.
It only took about an hour to get to Bruges, and it was a fairly easy ride. There were a lot of students on the train, so that was annoying, but I survived. I got into Bruges and found the tourist information center. I grabbed a map of the city and saw that they pointed out the top 10 things to see in Bruges, so that made my itinerary for the day pretty easy. It is a really nice little town. Very picturesque.
The Grand Place in Bruges was not quite as impressive as the one in Brussels, but it was very nice. I had lunch at a cafe on the main square and then walked around for a few more hours after lunch. I got the 4pm train back from Bruges to Brussels, but unfortunately it broke down in Ghent, so we had to get off and wait for another train in a half hour. Not the end of the world, but it was amusing to see how many people got really pissed off as if that was going to help at all.
I got back to Brussels around 5:30pm and headed to the hostel to drop off some things and then headed straight out for dinner at Hard Rock Cafe. It was my 40th one in total, so I was pretty happy to celebrate that milestone with an awesome Belgian beer, and a great meal, as expected. After dinner I walked up to a car museum called Autoworld where I met Pete (Soupy). He is a friend through another friend Paul, in Edinburgh, and Pete is living in Brussels. We got together for the Spain vs. Netherlands World Cup match, which turned out to be a joke for Spain. Defending champions shouldn’t lose the first game of the tournament 5-1, but they did. I wished I was back in the Netherlands celebrating with Jacquelien and her family. I can only imagine what the atmosphere was like over there.
We stayed out till about 11:30pm, and then I had to come back to the hostel to try and sort out a car hire for the next week. I’m hoping to be able to drive around France, Switzerland and Spain for my last week before I get to Madrid. It would be a nice flexible and cheap way of getting around. The trains and busses are really expensive over here. Tomorrow night Pete and his girlfriend Tessa are nice enough to let me crash at their flat, so I’ll be hanging out with them during the day tomorrow. Should be fun 🙂