lundi 31 août 2009

Thriller a la mexicana

Samedi, plus de 13 000 personnes se sont rassemblées sur le Monument de la Révolution, au centre de Mexico. Pour fêter l´indépendance du pays qui a lieu le 15 septembre? Que nenni, pour célébrer la date anniversaire de Michael Jackson!
13 000 personnes dansant sur la chorégraphie de Thriller, c´est assez impressionant!
Et le record américain est battu, car il existe officiellement une compétition apparemment assez disputée pour rassembler le plus de personnes possibles sur Thriller!
Alors, à vous de vous entraîner!

lundi 24 août 2009

Belgian food (and drinks!)

To conclude about Belgium, a little summary of what you may eat and drink there.

The Belgian speciality of all times are... the French fries!!! or Freedom fries, as they are called now. So no, French fries are not really from France, and are indeed much better in Belgium! You may find a lot of friteries (French fries shops) everywhere, and it's cheap and good.
Another striking point about Belgium is the amazing quantity of beers they have. It's a real challenge to go to a bar in Belgium and to choose a beer, as the menu shows dozens of them! We tried the Maredsous (my favourite),

the Westmalle,

the Jupiler (too light for my taste), and the Rodenbach (too sweet as they usually mix it with grenadine).

It is just great to enjoy mussels in white wine, with French fries and a beer, close to the North Sea shore!

Belgium is also famous for its sweet food: chocolate of course, but also waffles (not the same as the French ones), spicy bread (Baudelaire was buying his in Brussels), and the speculoos of course, biscuits of various shapes to be drown in coffee.

In conclusion, Belgium is a great country, full of history, culture, lovely places to go to, nice people, and amazing food (and drinks)!

mercredi 19 août 2009

Belgium - Polders

After our visit of Brugge, we headed towards the North Sea, and we arrived to the Polder Area. A Polder is a region located beyond the sea level, and is usually more frequent in Holland.
We stopped at Lissewege, a typical polder village, and a center of retirement for old people with artistic aspirations.

The village is very small, and we tried to run as soon as possible from the Lissewege church, since its bell was ringing again and again and again for more than half an hour.
We found a little canal, very nice to walk by, with many people sitted there, painting the view. The canal was also decorated with works of art.

But we left quite soon, because the bell was starting to ring again, and the sea breeze was calling us!

jeudi 13 août 2009

Belgium - Brugge (Bruges)

After Gent, we drove to Brugge to visit one of the most famous Belgian City.

I read in my tourist guide that a good thing to do in Brugge was to close the guide and get lost. So I obeyed and we started to visit the nice little streets of the town. The canals, a nice and relatively quiet park, the Gruuthuse Museum (Brewery Museum)...

There were not too many people and it seemed a bit strange...

We had a salmon sandwich for lunch and a famous Belgian waffle, and I decided to open my guide again to see if we had seen the main touristic atractions. It turned out that we hadn't, and that the main places were at the other side of the city!

So after our tour of the untouristic places of the town, we arrived to the touristic part, where all the people were of course. We saw the Burg place, where the City Hall is located,

and the Markt, where all the famous Brugge little houses are.

In conclusion, Brugge is indeed very nice, but seems too much like a museum city, where only tourists go to take pictures. Gent was far more interesting!

samedi 8 août 2009

Belgium - Gent (Gand)

Gent is located in the Flemish part of Belgium. Personnally, and maybe because of my French arrogance, I thought everyone would speak both French and Flemish. But it was not the case at all!

We arrived in Gent on the afternoon, and tried to find some change to pay the parking place. Asking for some change in a bar, we met Caroline, a very nice French-speaking girl, who offered to lead us around the city. And it was a very nice tour!
The architecture of Gent is similar to Brugge's, but the city is livelier, and full of "real" people, meaning not only invaded by tourists...

The cathedral St Bavon is very impressive, as are all the typical houses close to the main canal.

Caroline told us that the canals going through the city were once dried, but now the city government was trying to rehabilitate them, to make the city prettier...

Many works were going on in the city center, but the city seems a very nice place to live. Enjoying a beer on a terrasse, swimming in a new-built canal, or admiring the contrast between new constructions and old traditionnal buildings, time flew quite fast in Gent!