I decided not to set an alarm the last night, and I woke up about 10:45am. Although it was nice to sleep, I was kind of bummed that I wasted valuable hours I could have been out and about checking things out in Brussels. My experience the night before with the uncomfortable neighborhood we had to walk through to get to the city center and the crazy expensive dinner did not make me a very big fan of Brussels. I was very tempted to just stay in the hotel room and take advantage of the free wifi and skip any further Brussels experiences. Plus, I woke up in such a cranky mood (likely from being so exhausted from the trip) that I felt like I could breathe fire if I wanted to.
When I went to Alexander’s room, he was like “…are you ok?” and I explained that I was in an extremely bad mood, but prompt coffee and breakfast would likely remedy the situation. Sure enough, there was a cafe right next to our hotel so we went in (kind a of a rundown area but crazy nice hotel). I had a cafe creme and a chocolate croissant and I felt miraculously better. Then we took the stroll back down the same ….interesting…. street to the city center. Not as scary in the daylight, but still not my favorite way to get around. The first thing I noticed was how many people were on bikes in the street. It turns out, for some as yet unknown reason, the streets were closed down for the day and people were all riding bikes everywhere.
When we got to the city center, there was a big festival going on. People everywhere, loud music blaring in the square (oddly enough.. “Low” by Flo Rida….). The really interesting thing about the music choice is that the festival had something to do with something sacred (I couldn’t understand the sign but I could understand the word for sacred!) and it just didn’t seem quite appropriate to be playing that song. Of course, there were also huge beer tents and everyone was drinking beer in the a.m. and feeding beer to their dogs, so I guess not too sacred? 😉
We spent the morning exploring, taking pictures, and buying lots of chocolates 🙂 I had another amazing belgian waffle. Seriously, I can never eat waffles in the U.S. again. It is shameful what we call a “belgian waffle” in the U.S. because they are infinitely more amazing when you are actually in Belgium. Oh, even just talking about it makes me want one right now. So delicious! For those of you who doubt my sense of taste due to my lack of smell… let me tell you, I DO have a very strong sense of taste… and I am salivating right now just thinking of those waffles. Mmmmmm.
Random sidenote: my bedroom window is open right now and someone with a think russian accent is singing something about butterflies. Really?
Anyway, back to Belgium. We ran into Adam and Krissi in the square, and some other students… and then this really weird parade walked by with this giant Devil guy and a bunch of people (including children) dressed in devil costumes. We have no idea what it was. So weird! I need to figure out what the festival was about.
Anyway, shortly after that we headed back to the hotel to get our bags and head to the train station to go back to London. When I went to Paris we had plug-ins at our seats but for some reason our train this time didn’t have power plugs. However, the bathrooms did?! I was very eager to go through all of my pictures but my laptop only has about a 10-minute battery life. So, when my laptop got ready to die… I took it to the bathroom and sat in there for awhile with my computer plugged in. There are LOTS of bathrooms on Eurostar trains so I assumed anyone who needed to go would walk on by when they saw the one I was in was occupied but no such luck. People kept grabbing the handle and trying to open the door. People not sure what the occupied sign means?? After people tried to open the door about 10 times, I finally gave up and went back to my seat. Not long after that, we were back in London and on our way back to our separate flats.
So that is the non-climatic end to our trip! I was so exhausted after all of that that I can’t even remember what I did once I got home… I think I went out to do something, ended up running into the Looneys, and got dinner with them at a cheap place nearby. And then probably hung out at their house for awhile.
One problem I’ve noticed is that I am either (1) suffering from a severely bad case of 3L-itis (like senioritis but for last year law students); or (2) enjoying being in a new place too much to take time out to do any of the “study” part of “study abroad”; or some combination of the two. I cannot get myself to do anything school related (besides going to class and reading for 1 of the 3). I only read for the one class because he calls on people at random, and takes points off if you’re unprepared. Even when I have 4 days off and I’m not traveling, and I have all intentions of reading for all 3 classes and maybe even starting an outline… I wait until 11pm the night before classes, try to read for evidence but get too tired, and then wake up early and finish it before class and stroll into tax having no idea what is going on (tax comes before evidence on school days).
I’ve always been a procrastinator but never quite this bad. And what do I do instead of taking time out to get my act together? Book more trips!
So far I’ve got Paris Round 2 + Barcelona, Spain + Amsterdam/The Hague, Holland all scheduled for October, and Berlin, Germany scheduled for November. And I’m leaving for Ireland in a few hours… Oh my!
For all of the pictures of my very limited time in Brussels (from about 8:30pm-1:30pm the next day) click here.