Travels with V





From tragedy to giggles and laughter

Brussels part two

We are reminded of Europe’s violent history with two world wars where Belgium with it’s central place surrounded by fighting powers was in a terrible spot. That it affected the country long after the wars ended is reflected in the numerous war memorials erected in various places. They commemorate both wars and honour the heroes and the slain.

But in all this tragedy there is also a typical Belgian humour seen in comic strips and art.  A countryman they are proud of is the surrealist artist René Magritte, who in a very Belgian way toyed around with impossible and often very comic images, while many other surrealists were diving into the symbols and mysteries of the soul. We visit the Magritte museum in Brussels and yes, we giggle now and then.

To us Brussels is a food heaven. The city has 33 Michelin-starred restaurants and 135 others that are recommended in the guide.  But you can step into almost any brasserie and get a very good meal, fore instance a Moules frites, the Belgian signature dish. 

That Brussels is a food capital is even more obvious when we take the metro to the Anderlecht district to experience the gigantic food market by the old abattoir. We’ve never seen any bigger, it beats even the Central American food markets. This is where the city people go to buy their groceries and fruit, but also meat and fish.

Brussels is also home to a couple of very old and very grand churches. Among the ones we entered the most beautiful was without a doubt the St Michael and St Gudula cathedral. I’ve never heard of a church with two names, but these two are the patron saints of Brussels. Its oldest parts are from the 13th century and the mosaic windows are priceless.

Walking home we pass the Manneken pis corner again and are caught up in a maelstrom of people watching and participating in a moustache competition. The winner is announced and a jolly brass band plays sweet melodies. 


But let’s not forget the other typically Belgian art form that is famous around the world, the comic strips. In a small antiques market V makes a rare find –  the forbidden ”TinTin in Congo” in french! TinTin and all the other comic book heroes, Lucky Luke, Spirou, Gaston and the Smurfs, they’re also cherished all over and appear everywhere. On walls and in shops.  It’s not hard to have a good time in Brussels!

Resebloggar finns det gott om men vi har en lite annan tanke med våra berättelser. Vi vill främst beskriva våra upplevelser av udda platser, människorna vi möter och miljöer som är rätt annorlunda mot vad vi möter hemma.

Därför hamnar vi ibland i avlägsna indianbyar i Guatemalas berg eller bland andetroende bybor på en ö i Indonesien. Men också på mer kända platser som Machu Picchu i Peru eller sandstränderna i Goa. Allt sett genom våra ögon och kameror.

Den som vill ha restips får också sitt - varje resmål har en avdelning med sånt vi kan rekommendera. Eller undvika. Vårt fokus är framför allt att sporra er läsare att göra som vi - resa rätt ut i den vida världen.