03 Aug My solo trip to Belgium
In early June my sister got married in Belgium, so of course I had to be there! Jelger however, would be working at a wedding in Vancouver instead. After all June is the middle of our busy season! It would be my first time travelling to Belgium without Jelger. Well, the first time travelling anywhere for fun without him. At first I was a bit sad about that, because I love sharing experiences. But then I decided to make the most of it and get a lot of ME time. 😉
Instead of stuffing my very short week (jet lag!!) with family and friend visits, I included two days of not meeting anyone and just exploring Brussels by myself. I got to stay with a good friend, who lives there and felt very spoiled! Getting lost in the little streets and eating way too many fries turned out to be quite fun. That included me eating on a little patio in an interesting neighbourhood, where I only realized after a good amount of time that the loitering ladies on the street, were not really hanging out, but working. 😉 Strong contrasts between groups of people in this city.
My friend introduced me to a group of wild parrots (what?!) who were set free from a zoo a couple of years ago. Now they over and have built massive nests in the city’s parks. I got to know Brussels from a new perspective.
For some reason when Jelger and I still lived in Belgium, Brussels had a grim reputation to me. While there are definitely sketchy neighbourhoods, I now feel as if I missed out on a lot by not giving this city a real chance! So much culture, amazing design, great little food places and a lot of multiculturalism. Unfortunately the latter seems to be working better in some neighbourhoods than others. It also has many more hidden gardens and cute little green parks than expected.
The highlight of the trip was of course my sister’s wedding. So fun to be a wedding guest for once! For those of you wondering: I put my camera away. No need to become “that guest with camera who’s in every shot”, hahaha. It was quite a different experience to be present in the moment and enjoy the good company and the amazing food! Especially fun was the amazing private concert and a hike at a local nature reserve.
Am I missing out on not having hundreds of photos of the day? Heck no. 😛 I have a cellphone selfie that I’m very happy with. 😉 I did pull out my camera (just once!) after the photographer left when they started playing with sparklers. However I was definitely not sober at that point, hahaha.
Finally before flying back to Canada, I visited the polder from Doel, close to where I grew up. It was a short hike with my mom. Interesting to see how things change and yet stay the same. One particularly impressive part was the private “museum” of one of the locals. A young man collects everything that has an even remote connection to the polder history.
Touristing in Brussels
My sister’s wedding
My precious cellphone selfie 🙂
Polder from Doel