Ah, Brussels! I have some good memories from there. We spent a few days in the capital city of the great nation of Belgium, and it was our first exposure to underground metro systems. As far as metros go, Brussels’ is fairly small, so it was a good way for us to practice before moving on to the more daunting metros of Paris and Rome.
Brussels is a beautiful city, and I was able to practice my French there quite a bit. Even though it’s officially bilingual (and most official signs reflect that), from my experience French is the more popular choice in the city. The downtown square was very spacious, and surrounded by high, old buildings on every side. For the lover of architecture gothic could be seen, as well as some others. While there we got to peruse a few museums, including the Royal Museums of Fine Arts, a museum full of musical instruments of all sorts (my favourite!) and also a comic strip museum. If you are not aware of the fact, it is good to know that Belgium is widely known for its comic strips, and perhaps the most famous of these is Tintin. I had been a Tintin fan long before going to Belgium, and it was with glee that I went through the exhibit on Tintin and his creator, Hergé. That Sunday, before returning to our homebase in Verviers, we worshiped with the French-speaking church there in Brussels. I had the privilege of teaching the Bible class, which I regrettably had to teach through the help of a translator, since my French was not good enough to avoid that step. The church, though small, was very kind, and while it consisted primarily of Belgians, I met some people from Scotland, Canada, and the U.S. there as well.
Overall it was a lovely trip, and I would gladly return if given the chance. La Belgique me manque !