Europe 1997 (Part 8)

September 1

One time we played a concert in Antwerp, Belgium.  At least I thought it was Antwerp, Belgium.  Turns out it was a Stop ‘n Shop in Wisconsin somewhere, but it was fun man.  ~  Slash *


*  OK, we didn’t actually make it to Antwerp this trip – we would a couple years later.  I just wanted to us this quote about Antwerp.   Besides, Antwerp is the location of our current favorite TV show (on PBS), Professor T.  This was the last full day in the neighborhood, so we took the road west out of Brussels . . .

[The Grand Place in Brussels . . . ]

4-97-208 - Copy

[Out past the Atomium . . . ]

4-97-209 - Copy

[The Atomium is a landmark building in Brussels, originally constructed for the 1958 Brussels World’s Fair (Expo 58).  It is located on the Heysel Plateau, where the exhibition took place.  It is now a museum.  it stands 102 m (335 ft) tall.  Its nine 18 m (60 ft) diameter stainless steel clad spheres are connected, so that the whole forms the shape of a unit cell of an α-iron (ferrite) crystal magnified 165 billion times.  Tubes of 3 m (10 ft) diameter connect the spheres along the 12 edges of the cube and all eight vertices to the centre.  They enclose stairs, escalators and a lift (in the central, vertical tube) to allow access to the five habitable spheres, which contain exhibit halls and other public spaces. The top sphere includes a restaurant which has a panoramic view of Brussels (Wikipedia).]

4-97-210 - Copy

Ninety-five percent of all Brussels sprouts come from California.  ~  Danny Meyer


[No, we didn’t enter . . . ]


[The Brussels International Exposition of 1935 was a World’s fair held between 27 April and 6 November 1935 on the Heysel Plateau (Wikipedia).  This is the Palais des Expositions built for the exhibition .]

4-97-215 - Copy

[Ghent is a city in the Flemish Region of Belgium.  It is the capital and largest city of the East Flanders province, and the third largest in the country, exceeded in size only by Brussels and Antwerp.  It is a port and university city.  The city originally started as a settlement at the confluence of the Rivers Scheldt and Leie and in the Late Middle Ages became one of the largest and richest cities of northern Europe, with some 50,000 people in 1300 (263,000 currently) (Wikipedia).]

4-97-216 - Copy

[While it’s less “Disney world/honeymoon-paradise” than its neighbour Bruges, Ghent is no less beautiful, and no less short on canals. A simple boat trip will take you on a relaxing trip around the city’s watery arteries, providing a new perspective of the beautiful buildings lining the canals (]

4-97-217 - Copy

[Main square of Ghent . . . ]

4-97-218 - Copy

[Gravensteen Castle . . . ]

4-97-219 - Copy

[Spire on the Town Hall . . . ]


[Appears to be a street of fine dining . . . ]

4-97-221 - Copy

[The Royal Saint-Hubert Galleries are an ensemble of glazed shopping arcades in central Brussels (and here, Ghent).  Designed and built between 1846 and 1847, they precede other famous 19th-century European shopping arcades.  Like them, they have twin regular facades with distant origins in a long narrow street-like courtyard, with glazed arched shopfronts separated by pilasters and two upper floors, under an arched glass-paned roof with a delicate cast-iron framework (Wikipedia).]


[And then on to The Netherlands (it says so on the sign).  As previously noted, going between countries at that time was like crossing a street . . . ]


[Then we walked over a dune to take a look at the North Sea . . . ]

4-97-225 - Copy4-97-226 - Copy

[Another reason why we knew we were in The Netherlands . . . ]


[Well, that was enough of the Dutch.  Here we are back in Ghent again . . . ]

4-97-228 - Copy

[I think we were in search of a fine dining venue, which became my sole major remembrance of the city.  I can’t remember where we ate, but we were well distanced another couple eating there.  As they left, they stopped at our table and asked if we were Americans.  We said yes, how did you know (I doubt they could have heard us talking).  They said by the way we eat.  Only Americans cut their meat, then move the fork from the left hand to the right hand before eating the morsel.  I’d never thought of that before, but it’s true . . . ]

4-97-229 - Copy

[Belfry of Ghent . . . ]


[No, this is not Central Illinois – we’re on the road to Bruges . . . ]

4-97-231 - Copy

[Back to Bruges (I think) . . . ]

4-97-232 - Copy

[The Smedenpoort, a historical gateway to the city of Bruges from the 13th-14th century, is in its current state to narrow to organize a fluid traffic of cars, pedestrians and cyclists. The city of Bruges decided in concertation with the Commission of Monuments and Landscapes to add new footbridges on the both sides of the existing building (]

4-97-233 - Copy

[Belgium” is the rudest word in the universe, which is “completely banned in all parts of the Galaxy, except in one part, where they could not possibly know what it means.  ~  The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy

4-97-234 - Copy

[The Super with the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse in the city’s Central Square . . . ]

4-97-235 - Copy

[Back home to Arlington, Virginia, where we discovered . . .  The Newseum opened at its first location in Rosslyn, Virginia (about a half mile down the hill from where we lived), on April 18, 1997, and on April 11, 2008, it opened at its last location.  As of December 31, 2019, the Newseum closed its doors (at its downtown D.C. location) and is seeking a new site, while many exhibits and artifacts went into storage or were returned to their owners (Wikipedia).]

4-97-199 - Copy

[The above photo is of a section of the Berlin Wall; below is the entire section of the Super, I believe with a fallen, beheaded statue of Lenin . . . ]

4-97-200 - Copy

[A history of news . . . ]

4-97-203 - Copy

[I’ve already forgotten the significance of the dome . . . ]

4-97-204 - Copy

[We were basically just across the street from the USA Today headquarters, with all their news gathering satellite antennas . . . ]

4-97-205 - Copy

[Women’s suffrage – of major significance this year . . . ]

4-97-206 - Copy

[Again, I believe, the headless Lenin . . . ]

4-97-207 - Copy

[And from there it was just a couple of blocks to Arlington National Cemetery . . . ]

4-97-201 - Copy

[And the Netherlands Carillon . . . ]


[Overlooking the nation’s capital . . . ]

4-97-212 - Copy

[And the Iwo Jima Memorial . . . ]

4-97-213 - Copy

He didn’t really like travel, of course. He liked the idea of travel, and the memory of travel, but not travel itself.  ~  Julian Barnes

Modern traveling is not traveling at all; it is merely being sent to a place, and very little different from becoming a parcel.  ~  John Ruskin

Up Next:  Finishing Europe 1997 . . .

Leave a Reply

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

You are commenting using your 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 )

Connecting to %s