Thursday, January 23, 2014
When the Man of the Place turned forty, we had a party. When his fiftieth birthday rolled around, our son George and I surprised him with a trip to Paris. As we are still together, healthy and employed for his sixtieth I thought another birthday trip was in order. This trip to celebrate the beginning of another decade saw us taking the train to Bruges in Belgium.
Neither The Man of the Place or I have ever been to Belgium other than to change flights at the airport.
I think the main industries are tourism, chocolate production and beer. It is a stunningly beautiful place. We struggled to find a bad view within the walls of the old city.
Because it is geared for tourists, the centre of the place is expensive. Even a beer is expensive. Now I don't mind that the beer is expensive as Belgians are brilliant at making beer. Most of those beers are quite a bit stronger than the beer we have become accustomed to, so you don't have to buy nearly as much.
We stayed in a very elegant hotel. I didn't know how lovely the hotel would be until we showed up. Hotel Navarra was delightful and I cannot fault the hotel in any way.
Here is a view of the place where we had lunch on the second day. The white building over looking the peaceful canal. Very good food but the service was slightly inattentive. I felt as if we were a bit more elegant ourselves, we would have been treated with more deference. Ah, never mind. I wasn't there to have my ego stroked, we were there for lunch. Beautiful food, good location and high price. Birthday treats only for that place.
beguinage. On the way to the medieval beguinage, we walked through this garden.
Walked past this lock . . .
and past this house next to the canal.
The beguinage was a peaceful oasis. . .
I wasn't worried about that so much. I don't sell my photographs or use them to promote anything.
The main gait. I am certain that it used to be more of a barrier, to protect those inside.