October 25, 2010

Late update: Belgium

Antwerpen + Brussels + Bruges

In a broad sense, to me, the whole Europe is similar. They look much the same at first sight. After some practice, I learned, and the once blurred city faces emerged from the vague background. But that was later, before I could tell the difference of Antwerpen from all the others.

There were the same french fries with mayonnaise (but we agreed the fries were superior in Holland!). Buildings and shops weren’t much different. And H&m and Hema were everywhere, as usual.

Brussels and Bruges, however, were another story. And I like them better.

The artistic map made by the locals said the Belgian capital was hideous: “The city’s ugly, but we love it.” We were somehow confused. Or maybe because we were warned against beforehand, the expectation turned out to be lower. No matter what they say, I like the capital of Europe. The grand buildings rendered an unrealistic touch to the atmosphere. We were like happy little dwarfs, exploring curiously in the neat and grand city jungle.

And it only got better and better.

We lost ourselves for a while in the open-air market, dazzled by cute caps and sloughy hats. After the cheap Chinese dinner, the night ended with us dancing to the Brazilian music. The street was filled with the happy samba rhythm.

Bruges. I’ve heard too many good things about the small town. And it was indeed as good as its reputation. The town was cozy with the well-preserved medieval atmosphere, with the sun spreading its warmth throughout our stay there.

We were lucky, but also tired. But I know it should be nothing compared to the Latin American girl who traveled months in Europe alone with more than 20 kilo on her back. I looked at her, and a mixed feeling of admiration, lost youth and fatigue rushed inside me. I think I’m too old to be constantly on the move. Too tiring. And I simply won’t be able to enjoy it. I prefer nice company better. Not someone to take my photos, but someone to share stuff with. And thank you girls, I did enjoyed laughing out loud and all the hugs and kisses while we felt the groanings of sore from our bodies.


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