Wanderings in…

Brussels, Belgium

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Arrival

Today we made it to camp Grimbergen in Brussels (yes, the name made Bethy cautious of a dump). 2 hours too early so we sat in the car playing Pokémon (I mean, what else do you do on holiday?!) Ben did have his first drive on a foreign motorway and did very well... to finish off the Haribo Tangfastics to himself!

We pitched the tent in record time - 30 minutes, met another English couple from Jersey - they seem nice, they gave us a tip to go canyoning whilst in Switzerland (they are just completing a 3 week Europe tour). We have had a chill day today. Time to sleep with these atmospheric crickets going off and wait for tomorrow's antics!


There and back again: A Hobbit and a (hard to believe) ranger from the North's tale

-- by the Hobbit.

We drove to the car park near the Atomium and in the process almost got ourselves killed when Benjamin dear was looking at the parking sign and not on the road. The guy in the other car wasn't best pleased!

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Got a few pictures with the Atomium - Tourists 'R' Us.

This is where our perception of Brussels being a nice city dwindles in this tale. We continued on our walk over to the chinese pavillion (Bethy loves oriental design) and after we found the damn place (after an hour) it is bloody closed!! They are doing rennovation. So we got a few snaps which weren't hidden behind a metal fence and sadly had to leave. I guess the positive outcome was it saved us some pennies?

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And so the sad travellers made their long, achey journey to Brussels city center to find the natural history musem.

15 minutes turned into 30, which turned into 50, and then 1.5 hours passed before we reached the outskirts of the center (after several water/desweat and apply suntan cream breaks) we walked these 'local' streets, which only compare to moss side back home. Only with more beggars and hobo's beds than I have ever seen.

Eventually (30 minutes) we found a business area that seemed nice, so we treated ourselves to a hearty lunch at the 'Boston Steak House' - obviously I picked the usual suspect from the menu at places like this - the veggie burger with a coke light (gotta watch the calorie intake don'tcha know!), whilst Benjamin had the classical burger, with- you guessed it... Beer.

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Once again we set off, determined to find the museum and wishing we had figured out the transport system of this confusing big city! This street sign amused Benjamin's gutter mind somewhat, take it how you will:

We walked numerous more streets for another hour until we finally found it. And the sign post? Well obviously it was directing you from 5 minutes down the road. Idiots! Don't all sign posts do that?!

Benjamin has never been to the natural history museum in London, and so expectations weren't so high... unfortunately mine were a tad tainted. It's not to say that it wasn't good, on the contrary. For a small country I was quite impressed by some of the dino skeletons that were on show.

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However, it lacked the wow factor and grandeur the building in London has. It also had several exhibits closed for reworking, which meant we only spent 1.5 hours in there. But for €7 and a 10km walk to get there, it filled an entire day.

We asked the museum staff for directions to the Atomium (where we parked) and they sent us to the wrong metro! ARGHHHH

Eventually we got back to the car once we found the right metro line. €2 each wasn't bad, but us attempting to work the ticket machine was!

Back to camp feeling 'meh' about the day, leaving a bitterness for the city of Brussels and somewhat achey, blistered feet!