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Belgium, Part 1

December 10, 2011

It’s been forever since I’ve actually updated in a timely manner. On the one hand, this semester’s been way too fun to spend an hour a day blogging. On the other hand, I do want to remember everything. So here’s to having to catch up, once again.

The summer after he graduated high school, Zack lived with a missionary family in Ghent, Belgium. Luk and Holly have two adorable boys, and I have heard SO many stories about them over the last two years. One of our first real conversations was about Belgium (I Googled the Belgian beers he was talking about on my phone under the table in the middle of class just to impress him), and I’ve always known how important that summer was to him. That being said, Belgium (and the Brazle family) definitely lived up to the hype. Ghent was charming and beautiful, and Brussels was big and bustling and quintessentially European. I loved every minute of the trip, even though I was definitely sick all day Sunday.

Allow me to elaborate on “loved every minute,” because while it was all fun, I loved some moments more than others. And my favorite bits of Belgium involved waffles. In America, just about any big waffle gets “Belgian” attached to it in a deceitful marketing ploy. Let me just tell you: NOT THE SAME THING. Wow. I’ve never been more simultaneously tempted and sickened at the same time, because half of one is enough to replace lunch, but I just wanted to keep  eating them. They’re so dense, so sugary, and so sticky. And so incredible. The waffles alone are enough to make me want to go back to Belgium, which I definitely foresee happening.

Another great aspect of the trip was staying with Luk and Holly in their beautiful house. After living with college students like we’ve been doing, it felt so good to be in a real home with a family and play with kids and get a feel for the day-to-day routine I often miss here. I love being a student and not having a strict schedule and eating whatever I want, but being told what time to be home for dinner was sort of comforting; I like routine, and we don’t have one here. So that was great. Also, their sons are two of the cutest kids I’ve met in awhile, so they were a blast to play with.

The first full day we were there, we went to a nature conservatory to feed the ducks there. The ducks were wholly uninterested in our attempts to offer them stale bread, so we just walked around and had fun in nature. It was really beautiful. All of these photos are from that morning; I loved being outside in such beautiful weather, and it was fun to go on a quiet walk. Kids are fun in nature; they see things that we don’t see. I like that.

Without further ado, photos! There are a lot. And they’re the same as Facebook. Sorry about that.


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