Tuesday, April 13, 2010

ceci n'est pas une voyage...

So this past weekend marked my 20th flight since August, which is crazy. More so what is crazier is the next time I will be on an airplane will be on my way back to home, sweet Texas. The last few months have been incredible, but this past weekend was absolutely one for the books.

I randomly decided, along with some encouragement from Alana, Carolyn, and Mackenzie, that I should book a trip to Brussels.
Good thing I listened to them and dealt with a pretty empty bank account for a while. I think I have found my new New York. Before I moved to San Francisco I was determined to go to school in New York, it was my "goal" city, the one place I would choose to live if I could go anywhere. Well, now, that place is Brussels. I absolutely loved it. It reminded me a lot of New York. A lot of Greenwich Village, minus Magnolia plus waffle and frite, with a bit more history. It was so beautiful, and the weather was absolutely wonderful.

We lucked out finding an apartment that was a rent-by-night a few blocks off of Le Grande Place, with an absolutely incredible view.

Right downstairs was the Holy Grail of frite stands. With a mountain of hand cut potatoes and a list of 20 sauce choices, I was in absolute heaven. There are three foods I love without any question and could eat any time at all- my mom's Tortilla Soup, yogurt, and french fries. I made it a point to make at least one trip a day down to the stand. We became loyal to Brasil Sauce, which was some sort of honey mustardy-curry-sweet deliciousness. Of course there was plenty of waffle (gaufre) eaten, as well as the most incredible chocolate, and it wouldn't have been Belgium without beer, of which we had plenty.

Aside from being the home of the Mannekin Pis, Belgium also is home to the largest collection of Magritte's works, only larger to the collection at the Menil Collection, in Houston. I always wondered why the Menil housed so many pieces, but learned that MFAH was the first place outside of Europe to showcase him...pretty cool, huh?

Everything about the city was perfect to me. I frequently was heard saying that if I had to become an expat I would HAPPILY pack up and move to Brussels.

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