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in my own back yard: Brussels

I certainly have many a trip planned in our 2-3 year stint here, but the truth is that I have plenty of fabulousness here in my own backyard! Last week, a friend and I did a little "Brussels Walk" and we really had a great time. It was centered around the origins (979AD) of Brussels (which in French means, city in the marsh), as the first center was on a small island that no longer exsists! IN fact, there was a river running thru Brussels for 1000 years that was put underground within the last 150 years. Apparantly it carried disease and posed flooding hazards and was diverted by city planners. Like all cities back then, there was a wall built around early Brussels, of which only a sliver remains. I'd seen the section by the Bowling Alley near the Sablon, but also saw a section that was new to me. We ended up in one of the oldest cafe in Brussels, La Fleur en Papier Dore , which famous surrealist Magritte and his fellow artists would hang out. It was a fantastic day, blue skies abounded, new friend in tow, and this history major was having a blast getting her "history on"! ;) And some photos from the walk: The building below (Saint Gery Hall) is exactly where Brussels began in 979. It's a now a cultural center and general great place to go if you have company and it's raining! ;)

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