And finally, I’ve come to the very last part of my stories before departure. By the time this post gets sent onto the web, I’ll be on a plane from Amsterdam to Tokyo already! I’m so very very very excited, it’s crazy! It’s the third time already, but woah it feels so exciting each and every time!
So, Wednesday evening, I had went out for drinks with an old friend. Well not exactly an old friend, just a friend I hadn’t seen in three years! It was about time to meet up, don’t you think… In any case, we met up in my city and first went to a cafe on the Grand Place. We sat outside and were talking and talking until suddenly, the doors closed and were locked. Just like that. Without a word of “uh, we’re sorry, but we’re closing soon, so could you please finish your drinks?” Nothing of the sort. Just BAM, doors closed! So yeah, I finished my drink and, since it had gotten a bit chilly outside, we decided to have another drink at the Irish pub. After some two hours, the owners started to clean up the place, as if they were trying to say “please just leave already…” so after it got kind of awkward being the only two people left, we felt like we were pressured to leave. So we did. It’s so weird, these places closing so early. But well, it WAS a weekday so maybe it isn’t that strange after all. Of course, it was great to see my friend again and I hope it doesn’t take us another three years to meet again! :p
My plan for Thursday were kind of a stupid idea. Not that it wasn’t a very good day, I was just incredibly tired and it was the day before leaving, but I still decided to visit Bruges with a friend. But I had a good reason to do so. A colleague from an event I occasionally work at, asked me if I would come and say hi before I left. So I did! They’re such nice people, kind of like family, so why not? Apart from that, I love Bruges, so any reason is a good reason to visit the medieval city! Thus, we went! My friend’s mom was also going to Bruges that day, so she went by car while I went by train. We arrived around the same time, so neither of us had to wait much. First, a visit to the event (it’s a sort of book market called Boekenfestijn), where my colleagues were all happy to see me. After talking to two or three of them, my friend exclaimed: “Woah, they seems to really like you!” She seems really surprised, but as I said, these people are like a big family. I spent over an hour talking to different people, I felt a bit guilty for my friend, who didn’t know any of these people, but I was delighted to talk to these awesome people. Some will be reading my blog as well, so hello to you and say hi from me to the others! ^^
When we left the event hall, it was already 1 pm so we were getting hungry. We had pizza at Pizza Hut, where we were served by a annoyingly unfriendly waitress. We order a pizza with thin crust (we mentioned ‘thin crust’ twice when ordering), she brought us one with thick crust, I said “Uhh sorry but we ordered a thin crust”, she said “Did you? You’re sure you don’t want this one?”, I said “No, thank you”. She was obviously offended. A few moments later, we got the pizza we ordered and since it was smaller than we expected, we wanted to order some garlic bread as well. So we called out to her, and the first thing she said? “Again not good enough?” What’s with that attitude?! :O
I showed my friend around in Bruges, but due to being short on time, we could only see part of it. Through the shopping street to the square with the Belfry, the statue of Breydel and De Coninck (two important figures in the Battle of the Golden Spurs) and then an exhibition caught our eye. Called Historium, the museum uses modern technologies to recreate the Bruges of the Golden Ages. We couldn’t really afford it today with our student budget (though they had a student discount, it was still 9,50 euros), but I would love to visit it next time! There was a free virtual reality part, which my friend tried out. She said it was really cool, that she could even feel the warmth from the fire (which I saw from the outside that was just a heat lamp) and the soft blow from the wind (which was, indeed, a small ventilator in front of her).
A short visit to the Basilica of the Holy Blood, which supposedly houses a bit of Jesus’ blood, was worth it. The church has so many colours on the inside, it’s amazing! I’m not religious or anything, but this must be one of the most beautiful churches I’ve ever seen. A must in Bruges, to say the least. The fish market (the market is still held every week, I think) is also an interesting place. The market facility is used for other markets as well, such as flea markets.
Our time was almost up, so we shopped for some souvenirs my friend can take to Japan when goes and lastly I looked for shoes. I’ve been looking for shoes for a month already, but as you may have read in a previous post, always to no avail. I have to use supporting soles, but they didn’t fit in any kind of summer shoe, so I decided to do without them for three months. It’s not a good thing, but I hope I won’t feel too much pain.
That’s all! I’m off to bed now, and I’ll see you in Japan! 😉