Off to the capital

Trip Start Sep 18, 2007
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10
Trip End Sep 29, 2007


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Where I stayed

Flag of Belgium  ,
Friday, September 28, 2007

The next day we were off to Brussels for our last night in Belgium (and Europe).  It was raining again, but we managed to catch the right bus and train to Brussels with no problem.  Train station was near our hotel so it was easy to find.  We left our luggage and went off to explore.  We hung out in the Grand Place, a big European square.  Very grand, interesting buildings.  We wandered around town looking at buildings, having drinks, seeing part of the city's original medieval wall.  We ate at a restaurant that was located right in the narrow streets (along with tons of other restaurants) right off the Grand Place.  We walked through what I think was one of the first indoor shopping areas.  We saw churches, synagogues, parks...just kind of took everything in.  We did go to the Royal Museum of Fine Arts and ran around the modern art section so I could see some works by my favorite artist, Rene Magritte, a Belgian.  There is a Magritte Museum in Brussels, but it's location wasn't convenient for our 1-day visit.  We had some issues with the layout and seemed to spend most of our time moving floor to floor without seeing much.  The elevators had seating in them...that was different.  We did finally see some Magrittes and as we were leaving, we saw a sign advertising that the Magritte Museum would be moving there in 2008.  D'oh!
We also visited the official mascot of Brussels, the Mannekin Pis statue.  Amazing that a little statue draws so much attention, but there we were, among the people milling about a little naked statue!  Sometimes he is dressed when special visitors bring clothing.  Not this time though...he was naked.  And pissing. 
Didn't hang out too much at our hotel.  The Hotel Welcome has rooms decorated in various world themes.  We stayed in Zanzibar for the night.  One of their smaller rooms, and very blue.  But just what we needed for our one-day stay.  We went ethnic on our very last night and ate at a tasty Vietnamese restaurant near the hotel.  Flight home was easy enough...except Todd's luggage was lost along the way.  Got it back really quickly though.  That was it.  European trip over unfortunately. 
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