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First of all… Hi, Annika! *waves* I can see you poking your nose in here, you know. Kann dann ja doch nich’ so kompliziert sein….?
Anyway, damn Frenzie for being faster than me in posting about our trip to Brussels last Friday!
While Frenzie was taking pictures of submarines I hastily packed my last few things, then headed out to his place.
After a - barely - vegan meal, a not very good movie (”AI”) and a way too short night we started to Brussels at around 9:00 am. Rather surprisingly - after the coldish Thursday - the temperature was around the 20°C mark when we arrived 3.5 hours later at our host’s place. What was at least equally surprising was that we did not have to pull over a dozen times to find out where we were, nor drive around the block ten times before resigning ourselves to park illegally anyway, as happened on both of my previous trips to Brussels. Brussels is a nightmare to navigate through, but fortunately our host had moved to a different area (and a wayyyyy bigger flat) that was easier to find, and allowed parking all along the streets. Actually we managed to park almost right across from the house.
Also, Brussels has recently introduced guards for parked cars, as we found out when heading out to the venue a while later:
And this is me taking the pic of the little bugger:
The actual venue was the oddest one I’ve seen so far. Le Botanique is a small club situated in a more or less airy (in some places stifling) complex mostly covered by glass, beside a very small park.
The other thing I found most odd was the total lack of security. No-one asked us if we had a right to enter the venue hours before the show. Yes, we arrived with a member of the local opening act, but no-one was there to take note of that and remember our faces or anything. Even later at the gig… apart from two people at the door checking the tickets there was no security at all. Weird Belgians.
After having handed two drugged vegan sausages to the main act’s singer - under the pretext of once having talked about those sausages on the chat - Frenzie and I decided to take a stroll through Brussels, which eventually led us to the Parc de Bruxelles. Sadly, the only interesting thing about that “park” was a fountain. But the rainbow inside tried to add a bit of glamour to it all.
The fountain also occasionally contained a mad dog, who kept running half circles around the fountain and stopping for the odd drink.
Well, you can only look at five trees for so long, so eventually we headed back to Le Botanique. Halfway there we spotted a strange Dutch-Scandinavian tourist group, being led by two confused Belgians, heading in the opposite direction on the other side of the road. Their directionless ambling seemed to promise some modest entertainment, so we decided to join them.
Some tourists wished to see the famed Manneken Pis (if you don’t know what that is, dear readers, just don’t ask, ok, you don’t want to know), so the would-be guides finally started asking directions to Grand Place.
At some other square the Scandinavian faction admired the merchandise of a souvenir shop, showing particular interest in the hats and sunglasses.
This and buying a toothbrush severely exhausted the whole group, so we all sat down for a beer (and a coffee) at that same square.
Yeah, you guessed right, we never actually made it to Grand Place or the Manneken Pis.
The odd Scandinavians soon headed back to the venue with one of the guides, and - luckily - arrived as safely as the rest of us did with the second guide a while later.
Back at the venue a very nice person put us on a very nice list, and not long after that the local opening act started to play.
Look, it’s one of the guides, drinking a beer and enjoying Shogun!!
After that Frenzman and me rather enjoyed the cooler air outside of the actual club and missed the second opener, Superbutt. Yeah, shame on us!
We went back in again for Clawfinger though.
“You can’t catch me, try to catch me if you can,
you can’t catch me, try to catch me if you can,
After the show we shivered a bit outside, then grabbed something to pour into our parched throats and collapsed at a table, wondering where Julien had disappeared to.
Well, he finally appeared and organized a ride back to his flat for us, then he went out to work and party some more.
Weird Dutchie, trying to invent the kamikaze sleeping position……