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Day 20 - Tuesday, 18 March 1997

- 06 October 97

Brussels & Brugge, Belgium

We made a change in our planned departure from Luxembourg and moved it up from 12:27 to 08:27 in order to get in to Brussels in the early afternoon. On arrival we walked to our hotel, The Hotel la Madeleine, which we had "scouted" before leaving Brussels nearly three weeks ago. (It hardly seem possible.) After checking in, and we wandered around the Gallery Royal St. Hubert and The Grand Place for the afternoon - just people watching.

About 4PM, when we started to think about where to have our last dinner in Europe, we all were quick to agree that we wanted to go to Brugge again. Knowing it was only about an hours train ride, we were off to Gare Midi and caught the first one headed that way. This connection was THE ONLY train connection confusion of the entire trip!! There were two trains due in to Brussels-Midi going thru Gent at about the same time - one then going thru Brugge (due in first) and one destined some where else and both of them due in on the same track. For some reason the second arrived first, and there was confusion about the posting and arrivals. In any case, we boarded this first train and asked the conductor about it's destination when he came around, found out it was not going to Brugge, got off at Gent, and caught a second train from Gent to Brugge. This second train must have been like a "school bus" because there were a lot of kids onboard and it stopped very frequently, it almost seemed like it stopped at nearly every cross road, added a bit to the travel time but no problem. Arrived in Brugge about 17:30.

Caught the bus from the station in Brugge to the burg and arrived before sundown. Wandered, people watched, and caught our last shop before they closed. While walking around the square, on the north side, a waiter came out from one of the restaurants - advised us of the specials for the day and we had a very nice dinner on the Brugge Square as the sun was going down.

Caught a "direct" train back to Brussels about 8:30PM, arrived back at La Madeleine around 10, opened the windows and listened to the night sounds of Brussels. Turned in about 11PM. "Dreading" the confines of the flight back to the states - after three weeks of spacious and comfortable travel on the European trains!!

Back to Birmingham, Alabama USA in the morning.

PHOTO ALBUM - DAY 20 (3 Photos - 48.1Kb) 


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