Traveling: Brussels

posted Aug 19, 2012, 8:16 AM by jj pionke
I took the train from Brugge back to Brussels and again swung by the storage locker where I dropped off things that I had bought.  The one real thing that I wanted to see in Brussels was the art museum and it then took me all day to find it.  Over the course of spending the day lost, I pretty much stumbled on all of the major sites. Here is the main square with some sort of flower exhibit:

main square in Brussels with flowers

By far and large, I found Brussels to be over-crowded with tourists.  I also found the Brusselians to be mostly rude and completely unhelpful.  This was a start contrast to the Bruggians.  I did eventually find the art museum.  I stopped at a cafe to get some water from what had to be the world's most surly waiter and the 4-some next to me was speaking in American English.  I landed up asking them if they knew the way and they had just come from there.  The art was pretty amazing and I am glad that I went:


After finally seeing the art museum, I went back the way I came to get a taxi at the taxi stand.  I walked past a shop and was literally halted in my tracks by my nose.  I managed to stumble on an excellent tea shop....several euros later and I finally got to the taxi stand.  It wasn't a long journey to the hotel thankfully.  What can I say about the hotel?  It's in northern Brussels and is comprised of several buildings.  The man at the counter was very kind and gave me a room in another building with a lift.  The lift stated that it could hold three people but it was about the size of the linen closet in the second floor bathroom back home.  The building I was in was a converted apt building so I had a kitchenette which was quite nice as there seemed to be no places to eat nearby.  I landed up at a small market and bought cheese, bread, some ham, and an apple - enough for two meals and then headed back to the hotel for the night.  I was exhausted.  I think part of the reason that there were so few eateries is that the area seemed to be a bit seedy, not dangerous though.  I didn't get the danger vibe from the area.  The hookers up and down the street were quite friendly.