Category Archives: Travel

Exeunt, pursued by bedbugs

Our first holiday in years.  We entered my acquaintance’s Paris flat, immediately expressing our gratitude to the moon-faced ginger tom who had made this possible.  We could not have afforded a hotel, so free accommodation in the exclusive, almost central … Continue reading

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No (Proper) Post Today

Scribe Doll is busy packing and saying goodbye to Brussels. For further information, see Westvleteren. Scribe Doll

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The Castle of Translators

Seneffe.  H. is beaming as we walk into the courtyard.  It is girdled by a horseshoe of former 18th century stables, now turned into guest rooms.  In front of us, beyond the railings, are the tall trees belonging to the … Continue reading

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On the Train from Norwich to London

The journey from Norwich to London was supposed to take two hours.  It took a little over four.  When we left Norwich, all seemed on schedule.  Then they got us to leave the train and wait on the platform in … Continue reading

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Pictures of Saint-Gilles

In the heart of bas Saint-Gilles, the cobbles of Le Parvis are lined on both sides with cafés, brasseries and a couple of Moroccan cake shops.  Tables are put outside at the first glimmer of elusive  Brussels sunshine.  People sit … Continue reading

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Place de Bethléem

The early evening light bathing Place de Bethléem carries flecks of sunlight.  Since moving to Brussels, I’ve had to arrange my timetable according to the sun.  In other words, as soon as I glimpse a rare hint of a sunbeam, … Continue reading

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Jazz and Three Women Carrying Water

In the Place du Jeu de Balle/Vossenplain, the flea market is being packed up.  Small china ornaments, wood carvings, worn-in leather jackets, incomplete sets of cut-crystal glasses and frayed canvasses with oil paintings of forest clearings are wrapped in creased … Continue reading

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Three Brussels Quirks and Three Delights (at least for a Londoner)

Quirk No 1: The Milk Issue “I don’t think we’ll be getting any semi-skimmed milk this week.” I stare at the sales assistant of our local Carrefour supermarket.  I am suddenly propelled into a parallel universe of Surrealism where I … Continue reading

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Easter in Brussels

M., the neighbour upstairs, asks if I am going to plant flowers in the large pots overgrown with weeds and dusty, pollution-corroded rosemary.  She looks disappointed when I say that I’m not going to bother planting anything, since we’re staying … Continue reading

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Trying Out a New City (Again!)*

Eclectic, dirty, quirky and – for a European capital – surprisingly scruffy.  This city reminds me of a bric-à-brac shop, where a precious artefact, a piece of useless junk,  an item of modern tat and a neglected masterpiece lie side … Continue reading

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