Bruges. Day 1.
We set off at the crack of dawn, at 5 am, from a cold, dark and drizzly Paris to catch a bus to Bruges. The drive was stunning, with rolling meadows and countryside, interspersed with the odd fairytale like town complete with cottages bearing smoking chimneys and picture perfect autumnal trees lining the avenues for miles. All excessively pretty from the safe haven of a heated bus. But the rain got progressively worse and we arrived at Bruges in the midst of a proper downpour.
After about an hour of waiting under the bus shelter, when we thought the rain was slowing down, we decided to make a dash for it. The nearest busstop was just 700 Mt away. Bad call. Because as soon as we dashed out, back packs, bags and all, it came down again so bad. We got drenched trying to run back for cover.
And that’s pretty much how it stayed for the rest of the day, forcing us indoors for the most part. The rain also made it horribly windy and temperatures ten degrees lower than Paris.
The day was almost fully washed out with just one dry spell at lunch time when we ducked out to the first charming bar we spotted. It is the land of beer, after all.
A forced siesta happened because what else was there to do but sleep? But we eventually got out again at sunset, when it slowed down a little, just enough for us to venture out in search of food.
Even so, Bruges is charming. Like stuck in a weird timewarp of sorts, dating back centuries and still mimicking the typical slow town life, while also having a chic, modern, hipster vibe on the inside. It’s one of the few European towns that survived both wars with virtually no damage, even though it was occupied both times.
Such a pretty town, this. It’s my second time here too, and I was keen to walkabout with VC. But it’s been an uneventful day overall and being cooped up in the tiny bedroom at our air bnb depressed me thoroughly. But maybe it’s for the best, we were forced to nap and catch up on some rest after the endless walking in Paris.