31 Oct 2009
31.10.2009 50 °F
Happy Halloween from Brussels, Belgium.
Brussels is about 6 hours from home so we left Friday night, hit the new PX in Ramstein and the Macaroni Grill. I had trouble reserving a room there so we ended up going to Spangdalem Air Base for the night. We arrived in Brussels by 1230 today and found our place, Hotel Bloom. It was a very modern and nice hotel for only 70 euros per night. It was a 20 minute walk from the center of town and that happened to be down a shopping street
Our first purchase was Belgian chocolate. They are so into their Mannequin Pis that they have him in all different flavored chocolate. They also had chocolate potato chips like Pringles that we had to try.
Grand Place is the center of town with the Town Hall, restaurants and a flower market. We sat here and had one of those famous Belgian Beers. Eventually we wanted to see what the hype was with this little mannequin of a boy peeing so we headed that way.
On the way we passed a The Waffle Factory and got another Belgian Specialty. Our waffles were piled high with strawberries, chocolate and banana. We hit some lace and tapestry shops which are famous in Brussels.
Eventually we came upon a crowd on the street and saw what we had been waiting for....the Mannequin Pis. All the assessments were right - he is disappointing.
This little mannequin had been given over 700 outfits by various countries so I was excited to see what he would be wearing. I was sad to find out it was ....nothing! Because of this we decided to go to the museum in the Kings House to see the outfits on display there. It was hilarious to see the costumes he has worn including an Elvis Pisley suit donated by the US.
After this we headed to the comic strip museum because my beloved Smurfs are from Belgium. As it turned out they didn't play that much of part in the museum.
Tin Tin seems to be famous with the Belgians and the museum went thru the making of comics.
When we finally got to the Smurfs they had a poster with all 100 listed - however no Female Smurf. They also showed a little model of their house, hefty's work out equipment and what I think is Gargumels Cookbook calling for a few Smurfs!
For dinner we had the famous mussels in Brussels at Chez Leon. It is a bit of a touristy place but along the restaurant Row it was the busiest. They crank out tons of pots of steamed mussels.
After all the walking we did today we were exhausted and headed to the beautiful room in Hotel Bloom.