22 Sept 2011
WATERLOO WHERE I LIVE
more participants at Jenny Matlock's Alphabet Thursday
When we decided to move from Brussels to Waterloo in 1975, it was to escape the city and move to the country side, not far from our work, only about 15 km. Little did I know about the history of this town, about the very bloody battle, Wellington, Napoleon etc, history hadn't been my favorite at school and I had probably slept over the battle.
Of course living here I learned more and more, especially when we took around guests from abroad. In the 70th it was still a sleepy little town without supermarkets and you could climb the 253 steps up to the Lion for free. The Panorama of the battle and the wax museum was already there but the entrance fee was nearly nothing. That changed with a new major ! And Waterloo today has become a tourist attraction over the years. Now we have sightseeing buses, and when you visit the the Lion site, you have to pay 15 € (21 $) for climbing up the steps, a movie about the battle, and the entrance to the Panorama.
The Lion site
Each two years a reconstitution of the battle is performed on the original battle field and it looks as true as possible. During that time you can see Soldiers in their historical costumes, especially the Scottish soldiers in their skirts doing shopping in Waterloo, which looks rather funny.
of course we also have a very old cimetary, which is not used anymore
a very modern Office park for mostly Insurance companies and Banks
The city hall is quiet new, but the station hasn't changed a bit over the years and the church is still the same which was used as hospital to the wounded soldiers from the Waterloo battle in 1815.
The Lion site is outside the city center, but the Wellington museum is in the center. There Wellington lived during the battle. Of course our movie theatre has been modernized and for posh people there is the "Passage Wellington" with its very expensive boutiques.
and on the other side of the main street is the "New Gallery" also with expensive boutiques.
Along the main street are other shops and boutiques and outside there are nice living areas.
In the city center is also a beautiful park which is used for Farmer markets, Halloween or Easter festivities or other festivals.
Fortunately around Waterloo, there are still fields although they have "shrinked" due to massive house building.
Although I live here now for 36 years, I still love my Waterloo, which probably became more famous because of the Abba song than because of its battle !