Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Hoböing: Half an Adventure.

This is the one picture I managed to take last weekend, while I was in Antwerp with Johanna. But I thought I should write a post, maybe, anyway. And this photo will just serve as a reminder of the trip.

I left Arlon at 8h43. I've come to know the times of the trains fairly well. Or, I know at least that the train direction Bruxelles-Midi leaves at 40 or 43 minutes past the hour, starting just before 5h, and that the train to Arlon from Bruxelles-Central leaves at 37 minutes past the hour. Anyway, Johanna joined me on the train as we passed through Namur. We changed trains in Bruxelles-Central, probably our favorite station. Somehow, despite the rather gaudy decor, it manages to appear beautiful to us. Perhaps it's just its location near one of my favorite places in the world, I don't know. But we got pretty lucky with our train, actually. We had a connection almost right away, and we ended up getting into Antwerp before 13h. We hunted down a grocery store and bought a nice loaf of seedy bread, a box of cheese, and a box of tomatoes, then we ate near a statue of something. When we were just about finished, some guy came up to us and asked us to sign his shirt. He was soon to be married. It was for his bachelor party. We saw at least ten groups of people who were obviously doing activites for their bachelor or bachelorette parties throughout that day, and several of them came and talked to us. It was pretty funny.

We'd headed to Antwerp without a plan, so after lunch we just continued down the main street. We stopped to watch a street performer for a while. This guy had his bicycle, like everyone else in Flanders, but the front wheel had been replaced by...a piano. Not an electric piano, either. A legitimate, upright piano with wheels added to the bottom and coat hooks attached to the back. He played and sang in English. We looked in some of the stores along the street and marveled at outrageous prices for clothing. Mostly, we wandered around aimlessly, looking at whatever was there, including a few pretty cool antiques markets. We went to the main square and from there, we followed pretty buildings. Eventually, we made our way to Rubenshaus, the home-museum of Flemish Baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens. We walked around a bit longer, then decided to go get dinner. We found a restaurant and we both ate for under 15€. The waiter placed us at a table next to two Flemish guys. At first he moved the table away to separate it, but he moved it back as soon as we sat down. Kind of strange. But dinner was good. We split a pineapple pizza and a salad, and even had some pizza left over, which we put in the cheese box for later. After dinner, we walked around a bit more, since it was really nice out. We took the train out a little after 22h, and on the train, we met a guy who had worked in Boston!


puis, une nuit blanche...


On Sunday, we met Austin in the Brussels area for a medieval market. Most of the adventure was getting there, but we did end up finding quite a beautiful park near Bruxelles-Schuman (that's right-- once you get out of the station it's actually NICE). And we got hobo points for being in that station of plywood, industrial metal, and paper signs. And the market itself was pretty cool. We listened to some interesting music played on really interesting instruments, had a picnic, and just walked around.

And then we took the train home. And we got up on Monday morning to run 6,2 kilometers.

Badass, eh?

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