The first thing I noticed about Brussels train station is that it is very clean....and everything is written in French. French isn't so bad if you can speak and read it. Unfortunately, I can do neither.
We made it to the ticket counter and purchased the next day's tickets to Milan, a 13 hour train ride through the Alps for about $20 each. We then attempted our way to our hotel. I had incorrectly booked for the wrong date and we were both hoping I could just finagle a few things and get the date changed to today as they seemed to still have a few rooms left.
It was on our way to the hotel that Brussels made it's first grand appearance to me. It was a 60 degree, dreary, semi-rainy day when it first made it's introduction to my sleep deprived eyes. Concisely speaking, I wasn't impressed with it. The few skyscraper buildings and lack of bustle told me everything I needed to know; Brussels didn't have much to offer to it's visitors other than chocolate.
We ended up getting a cab for about $10 bucks each because we had no idea where the hotel was. The cabbie was from Morocco, his name was Abel. After dropping us off I marched into the Residence Aryaan and finagled. We got the room for €50 (about $70) which was a better price than for some of the hostels in the area. Check in time was 2, but the clerk told us we could be back by 1-1:30 and it would be ready. We got some food at a small local restaurant, it looked kind of sketch, but ended up being really good. After eating we were even more tired and made our way back to the hotel. Our room didn't end up being ready until 2:15. I could have choked the clerk, but a room was a room, however long it took (still could have choked him though). Once inside we took showers and went straight to bed. Never mind the bed was made of cement and the pillows were cobblestone rocks they put a pillowcase over; it was a bed. We slept for about 3-4 hours till we roused. Bella went to feed her Internet addiction for about 2 hours while I decided to catch up on writing my blog.
I wrote until she came back; turns out she didn't use the internet. A Congo woman was using it...she was catching up on her Congo news. We debated as to what we would do with the rest of our evening.
I should tell you something. You know when you think of the capital of a country you think bustling city? Well Brussels is not that. We were in the heart of it and a car would drive by our street every 10 minutes. And we were pretty much on a main road. So judging by the lack of traffic, not to mention activity, we judged that we wouldn't be doing anything tonight; not because we didn't want to, but because there was nothing to do.
I think I have come to the conclusion that Brussels is my least favorite city. I feel that I have seen a healthy sample of the men in Brussels and my conclusion is that they are all......well I probably shouldn't say anything. It probably wouldn't be politically correct.
Nevertheless there is not much to do or see in Brussels. My advice regarding Belgium? Skip it altogether if you can. It has good chocolate (though I haven't tasted any yet, but I've been told) and waffles (haven't tasted that either). But so far as I can tell the two inventions came about due to boredom.
We slept the night away and listened to the sounds of motorcars racing by our window at 80 mph. I'm excited to get on our train tomorrow at 7:33 to take me to Italy.
Belgium hasn't been the most pleasant experience, but never the less it was an experience. One that hopefully I shall never repeat.