Posted in Uncategorized

Bruges: the brick and the brume

Bruges was the first medieval canal town that I had encountered, so naturally I was awed by it.

DSC_0304+

DSC_0189+

A train from Paris to Bruges would be too expensive for me, so I took a bus to Lille (France), stayed there for the night and took the earliest train to Bruges the next morning.

Lille Europe

Sunrise view from the train to Bruges:

Train to Bruges, dawn

Arriving in Bruges:

Bruges station

I had found a discount at Hotel ‘t Putje in Bruges and booked it. Really good deal: the hotel was cute, situated at the animated t’Zand  market and near the railway station, they also gave me a free copious breakfast the next day.

DSC_0129_small

The view from my room’s window couldn’t be better, with red tile roofs filling the air as far as eyes could see.

DSC_0514_small

I felt an urge to climb on those brick roofs and run like a court thief, but I restrained myself: I still had 2 days to go.

I went out into the t’Zand  market for breakfast. The roast chicken stand was to die for.

Roast chicken

DSC_0143small

DSC_0133_small

From there I followed the winding alleys with Notre-Dame cathedral looming over.

DSC_0165small

DSC_0150_small

DSC_0174small

DSC_0186small

I then took a boat tour on the canals. The boat guide introduced the scenery we were passing by in 3 different languages, it was fun but the switching between English, French and Spanish gave me a headache. At some point he (jokingly) offered to speak Chinese but luckily he wasn’t carried away by it. At the end of the tour, I tipped him some money for having kept it down to three.

The guide said that if the canal was frozen in the winter, they could ice-skate all the way from here to Holland. How convenient.

DSC_0248small

DSC_0254small

The flea market along the canal is another highlight. I love markets. Fish or wood, fruit or antique silverware, they all appeal to me. There were plenty of beautiful objects in this market.

DSC_0355++

DSC_0363+

Wise words from Plato:

DSC_0388

DSC_0392+

I had waffles with cream and strawberries for lunch that day. I hadn’t remembered having waffles that good. Or chocolate. Myriad of chocolatiers with all kinds or shapes: chocolate skulls and witches (clearly for the upcoming Halloween), chocolate hammers, and at some point, chocolate boobs (looked so delicious!).

DSC_0402+

DSC_0400

DSC_0417

DSC_0492+

Bruges is famous for its lace making. The Lace Museum located in a quiet quarter, with many nice doors around.

DSC_0445+

DSC_0450+

DSC_0451+

DSC_0467small

DSC_0469small

DSC_0470+

There was a show of lace making in the museum at 14h. If you are there, look for the oldest lady: she has a lightning-fast speed of lacing. The other younger ladies, not so much. It was an interesting watch nonetheless.

DSC_0453

DSC_0465

Endless strolling:

DSC_0383++

DSC_0406++

DSC_0486_small

A strange structure outside of the church:

DSC_0503small

I passed by De Garre but committed the mistake of not entering it to drink me away:

DSC_0414

Some puppets were ready to return home after a hard day’s work:

DSC_0506

I wanted to dine at Pomperlut as it got rave reviews, but the restaurant had been completed since 2 weeks.

DSC_0520+

So I chose another one, and ordered “Flemish beef stew”.

DSC_0538+

While I was eating, the chef came out of the kitchen to hear compliments from customers. I gave him some formal words, but I could have made a better stew.

After my dinner, the landscape had become so much calmer. Ancient buildings made dreamy reflections on the water in the dim evening light.

DSC_0553+

DSC_0563+

Next morning, I went out before 7am, ready to catch some sunrise over the spikes. The alley behind my hotel was still dark.

DSC_0583++

A chilly brume hung over sleepy bricks. The moon was still lingering on the citadel.

DSC_0594++

DSC_0588+

Nothing to disturb the water mirror…

DSC_0600

… except some man who was arranging the first stand for the flea market.

DSC_0598++

A lonely barge waiting for the day.

DSC_0607

DSC_0592

It was a magical scene. I felt under Bruges’ spell at that moment. The sun didn’t rise, but I was already late for the train to Brussels and Waterloo.

====================

WordPress has a very limited storage for blog pictures (it eats up 10% of my media space limits with just this post), so if you want these photos in the original size, here is my stock website:

https://www.picfair.com/eressea

Thank you.

Advertisements

Author:

My stock websites for photos: https://www.picfair.com/eressea

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s