Thursday, 31 July 2014

In Bruges

I've wanted to come to Bruges ever since I watched this movie.

Under the influence of the white stuff
 Will I see Midgets (apologies if that is not the politically correct term)?

Will elephantine tourists (except me) try to squeeze themselves up the cathedral stairs?

All shall be revealed...
When I am in Bruges ....

I have no idea what to expect. But I booked a small hotel room right in the center for a decent price (cheaper than the cheapest room in Vancouver at the moment ;-)

I get up in Middelkerke at 5:30 am to finish that nagging translation and on my first smoke break am rewarded with a Belgian sunrise  reflected in the windows of the church in front of my window.  Then of course the thought enters my mind that this sunrise will look even better seen from the beach.  Off I ride into a cloudless sky ;-)

The sand castle survived high tide, but not the beach sweeper ;-(

Is there anybody out there ?

close ..

I finish the translation before breakfast, where I discover that Belgians like stinky cheese for breakfast.  But it tastes good!
Kerke in Middelkerke

I head East towards Ostend at 10 am. There is a harbour right next to the railway station that I arrived at 2 days ago.

Why can't bridges over railway lines look like this everywhere?

Yes, that is a liftable bridge. The canal that I will be travelling along all the way to Bruges also serves as means of transportation. I'm sure in the old days there were barges being pulled by horses on the treidel paths along the banks.
Not the cleanest people, these Belgians !

While the canal ride is very pretty, after an hour it gets a bit monotonous

Another innovative lifting bridge design.

Damn, yet another way to die ;-(

Time to step into a city from the past ...

... or into tourist land. 

 There is a soccer match between Brugge (Bruges) and some other city on today.  
 Later in the afternoon I will see the Belgian police with helicopter support clean up the mess.
My room is not ready yet, so I head around the corner to Moules Poules for lunch.  The Salad Nicoise is obviously made by someone who never had a real one before but it's not bad at all. What is quite bad are the prices for eating out in this city. A salad almost Nicoise for 17 Euros. Ouch. And there is not even any Aussicht! (inside joke, eh?). But they do have free Wifi, which is not standard in Europe !  After listening to screaming kids from all directions for a while, I wish there was a ban on toddlers in Bruges.

After a quick shower in my tiny room with uneven floors (hey, the building probably is 500 years old), I head out to climb The Tower....

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