Brussels Bruxelles Brussel

Well, the humble Brussels sprout may have originated here, but the Belgians were not flaunting them on the streets. Shocking, I know.

Today was uncharacteristically cold for a summers day in Brussels, and it was very wet, but that did not stop us having fun. We had the pleasure of catching up with Andrew and Kathryn Halyburton, who are here on a surprise holiday for Kathryn’s “significant” birthday (not mentioning ages, just in case I get in trouble), and with Lachlan and Naomi Craggs who are currently living in London (they used to live in Newcastle too, arguably the best city in the world). It was SO fantastic to catch up with some people from home! Especially ones as much fun as these guys!

We met them in the Grand Place or Grote Markt and walked around a bit, drank some coffee and tried enough chocolate to sink a relatively small ship, before finding a €1 waffle shop. Genius. We ate our waffles in front of a shop that said “do not eat your waffles here” as we could only deduce that this was a ploy to have waffle eaters look in their shop window, and then buy something. Reverse psychology. We then ummed and ared before it was decided (collectively, but also reluctantly) that Andrew Halyburton should have his way, and we would go to the Atomium. You have never seen anyone as excited as Andrew Haly was this morning about this place.

The Atomium is really quite impressive from the outside, and there was the “Brusselicious” festival happening at the foot of the structure, so we were off to a good start. We chowed down on some delicious Spanish BBQ food, admiring the local singing “talent”, the choreographed horse riding, and marvelled at how many people there would have been if it had been as sunny as the previous day.

It should be noted that on a clear day, from the top of the Atomium, we would have been able to see all the way to Antwerp. It was not a clear day, and we could not see much, the structure also appeared to wobble a little. By this stage, we were asking where the slides were between the balls… But to no avail.

To cut a long story short, the ever zealous Andrew (and the rest of us, who were much less enthused to start with) were, unfortunately, a little disappointed with the inside exhibits etc. Resident architect Lachlan wasn’t even impressed, and I think that Kathryn and Naomi fell asleep at the first exhibit.

With plenty of punishing going poor old Andrew Haly’s way, we ventured back into Brussels centre for some shopping and dinner. Drew took us all to a wonderful restaurant he found on trip advisor (which is a brilliant point of reference) and we scoffed some more delicious food.

I am now ready for a “schnoozen housen”. Goodnight world.

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