9 Jan 2016


Ever since the "lock down" in Brussels following the terrorist alerts have very much damaged Brussels' image. From level 4 it's now down to level 3, which in my opinion is not really justified, as Brussels looks as peaceful as a cow field, I mean at least in the center, outside it's even more quiet.

The Brussels City Center responsibles decided to launch a campaign to reassure tourists and boost the image of the city. 

Somebody had a very original idea ! If you want to be absolutely sure that no terrorist will bother you, just look for the site, Call Brussels.  The Brussels inhabitants themselves will reassure the visitors !

Phone booths  have been installed in three strategic locations of the city.

If you hear such a phone in a booth ringing, everybody can respond to questions from foreign tourists.

I should take a chair with me and sit besides one ! 

8 Jan 2016


1. My friend and neighbor Dominique had disappeared when we came back from Amsterdam. After two days I called her and she told me that she was with her fiancé who had fallen from a ladder and had a spine surgery. Now he is at home and she takes care of him there. They just had announced their engagement and then that, just 3 days before Christmas. She came on Monday to say hello and updated us and also showed us her engagement ring. He is a widow and she is divorced so at 61/65 they will start a new life, hopefully he recovers completely. At least he can walk around.

2. The weather is dreadful and the only places to go are museums or shopping malls.

I decided for a shopping mall, walked a little around, found nothing despite the Sales, had a sandwich, watched people and then returned home.

Just before I left I found this cute little case for my camera, I had lost the one which had a panda face ! Arthur is two headed now.

3. I should have gone to aqua gym on Monday, but I thought there were still school holidays and stayed home. Then a friend asked me why I haven't come, and told me that the holidays were over since Monday ! So I went on Wednesday and had a young man as teacher. Apparently I was tired because I fell asleep in front of the TV !

4. Coming back from shopping an inner voice told me to make a tour at the Waterloo Lion and just check if there were tourists there.

When I arrived I was happy to sit in my car, because otherwise I would have fainted ! The last old building had been demolished and now it really looks like "La morne plaine" (the dreary plain) as Victor Hugo the poet had described this place ! All the old  charm of the site is gone, it looks sad and dull and is now the ideal place for people who want to get depressive !

5. We started the new year in our painting course by celebrating the Epiphany which is called "Fête des rois" in French. The use is to eat a special cake called galette des Rois (puffed pastry generally filled with almond paste), surrounded with a golden paper crown.

We had three to eat, but managed only one. There is always a fève in the cake and the one who gets it becomes Queen.

For the first time in my life I got it, bit on a plastic crown and became queen ! Here I am as "Her majesty" for one day ! We had a lot of fun of course and talked about our year's end festivities.

more participants at Susanne at Living to tell the Story.

7 Jan 2016


When my friend Ilona and I went to the Brussels Christmas market, her friend Domi asked if she could come with us. Of course she could.

She absolutely wanted to buy a sandwich, I wondered why, because she just had lunch. But it was not for her but for a "homeless", she had met I don't know where and how, but she had taken him into her heart. He was a rather young man probably in his 30, who had lost his mother fell into deep depression, was fired by his boss and landed on the street. This is the short version. There he saved a little puppy and bottle fed him and he was his only companion.

Now the little dog was sick and he had no money to go to the vet. There is a vet clinic for the poors and homeless, which had been created by Prince Laurent, the King's brother. Unfortunately the clinic was far away and he had no money for the bus. Domi had arranged to find a vet nearby who checked the dog for free, but he had to pay the medication. I wanted to see the man and the dog and we went visiting him.  He sat on a cover in a corner of the street the dog well covered in a sleeping bag, he didn't move when we petted him. We asked the man how much he would need for the medication and Domi wanted to pay for that too, but Ilona and I gave him the money as Domi has not very much either for living. He was so grateful that we were ashamed ! We said good bye and continued our way on the Christmas market.

I noticed once more that the less you have the generous you are. Wealthy people are often stingy !

I didn't take a picture I thought it wouldn't be nice.

Linking to What happens in your surroundings this week ? and Warm heart Wednesday

5 Jan 2016


Christmas market in Brussels is here

4 Jan 2016


Saturday I stayed home ! Mr. G. had been downtown and told me that the center is full, impossible to find a parking space because the winter sales had started ! 

The shops were full of these signs and if you wait long enough maybe you can get everything for free. The whole thing lasts for a month. Each week the prices decrease and at the end you have the sales on Sales.

Instead I started to take off our Christmas decoration. I had enough. In the past we kept it until January 6, but now we just wait that the New Year is over.

I took a memory picture from the 2015 decoration, put everything in a box, Mr. G. brought it in the basement and there it will rest for a year.

Now our living looks normal again.

On Sunday as the sun was shining a bit, I thought I'll have a look on the Sales. Exceptionally the shops were open for this purpose. I had a boutique in mind which usually is quite expensive but has really nice things. So I only went there and found a nice pullover in mohair to a very reasonable price.

Of course I had to wear it in the evening when I went with Nicole to the cinema.  or at least that was our intention.

We arrived early and walked a bit around the Gallery, very convenient because outside it rained cats and dogs. Then we had a sandwich and finally we went to buy our tickets. Of course the movie was outsold, we were too late. Stupid girls we thought, why didn't we buy first the tickets and then walk around ?

It was early evening not even 6.30 and as there was nothing else to do than going to the cinema during the week or next Sunday, we went to our favorite Pub "La pomme" (the Apple).

There it was quite full and I noticed that they had completely changed the decor

It now looked as if we were in Spain ! At first I didn't like it, because I found the old one more cozy, but then I got used of it, maybe in spring and summer it will look more adequate !

That's how it looked before.