Nooks and crannies in the rain….Bruges and Leuven, Belgium

My flight karma struck again on our 48 hour trip to Belgium for the Gaelic Games Europe convention.  We spent 40 minutes standing on a crowded bus on the tarmac in Zurich waiting for our plane to be fixed.  It couldn’t be fixed and they switched us to the next plane, but this caused us to miss our connection in Munich and arrive much later in Belgium.  Thank you Swiss Air.

But we eventually arrived in Brussels and immediately took a train to Bruges, where we were met with a ceaseless downpour of rain.  Being prepared, as we usually are, we donned our rain jackets, rain covers and boots.  Off we went, with the umbrella strictly for the camera’s use.  Hence, some of the dreary pictures to follow.

Why did we go to Belgium?  Good question.  Riki has become an officer in a Gaelic sport, hurling, which he has never even played a full game in.  We went for the convention in Leuven, but with Bruges only an hour and a half away, I had to tag along.  Bruges has also been on my list for awhile.  Have you seen the movie, In Bruges?  You should, very funny, and a bit dark.  It was also our first date almost 9 years ago.

Anyway, Bruges is a fairy tale town, what with the canals and such.  And the nooks and crannies.  Despite the rain, which tapered off just in time for sunset, we wandered the Medieval streets and Riki was still able to get some good shots.

We stopped for a drink at De Garre, which is down a small alley in the middle of the old part.  If you go to Bruges, you must go to this place.  They make a beer here that is probably the best I’ve ever tasted.  It’s 11% alcohol but it is so smooth.  There is a limit of three per person, so you don’t have to worry about having too many.  I had two.

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Just pouring

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Stopped raining
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Bruges Town Hall

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Bruges Belfry – we didn’t go up because we are fat Americans, and it was cloudy
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Where the swans sleep

Back across the country later that night, we arrived in Leuven, the site of the convention.  Its a small town but also has a really ornate Gothic Town Hall.  I took a few photos while Riki was in the meeting.  Later that night, we met up with all the Irish people from the convention at an Italian place and had pizza and carafes of wine.

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 Then it was back to Zurich early Sunday morning, in time for Riki to make it to work.

Short trip, but worth it.

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