Friday, August 15, 2008

Bruges and Ostend

As promised, today we returned to Bruges. First on the agenda was climbing the bell tower to view the city. This was a serious bit of exercise, but the view was worth it. They charge you to do this, so we used our second-to-the-last prepaid stamp on it. The last one we used on the Arentshuis, a small museum showing the works of the artist Frank Brangwyn. We’d never heard of him either, but he died in 1956, so we figured the works would be more secular than those in the church museums. We weren’t disappointed.

The train stations in both Ostend and Bruges were oddly quiet at 9 a.m. on a Friday, and our train tickets were at the reduced weekend rate. When we tried to go grocery shopping upon our return to Ostend, we learned that it was a national holiday. We had to look it up on the Internet, though, to find out what holiday. Any Catholics or lapsed Catholics reading this probably know, it’s Assumption Day. Not being Catholic, I had to look up what Assumption Day was after I found out that was the holiday. Except for the grocery store closing early and everyone sleeping in this morning, it seemed to be a pretty normal start of a long weekend. For a change the weather has been gorgeous. That’s supposed to change tomorrow.

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