Sunday, August 17, 2014

"Only" a Flower Carpet 2014

The chatter I've seen about Brussels on some of the travel Facebook pages I keep up on are mixed, but mostly people felt that Brussels wasn't one of the more "popular" Belgium destinations.  Instead, the majority preferred Brugge, and since we absolutely loved Brugge, I trusted their opinion and decided that with a plethora of destinations to choose from, if we never made it to Brussels I wouldn't be too disappointed.  
But then, last year I came across a small article in one of the papers on-post about the 'Brussels Flower Carpet' and thought that that sounded pretty cool.  I wasn't exactly sure what a flower carpet was, but I don't need a real big reason to go somewhere, so I was interested!  But when I Googled it when we got home later that afternoon I found that it is only done every other even year (2008, 2010, 2012, 2014, etc...) for just one weekend.  Since we likely won't be here summer 2016 I knew that this was our only chance to see it!   And then there it was, the word "only"... our only chance to see it.... our one and only chance.... just one weekend every other year.... a once in our lifetime opportunity.... it was now or never.... and that was all my traveling heart needed to GO TO BRUSSELS!  

Since I had decided that a Flower Carpet was way cool enough to go to a place that some people felt wasn't all that great, Eric figured a day trip was plenty.  Eric has had a lot of really long work days a gazillion days in a row (I'm not sure on the exact number of days, it's probably more like 4, but the number of nights since you last ate supper with your husband is measured in gazillions....just so you know), and Isabelle had to miss one of the last sleepovers of the summer to go to something that can't possibly be more important than a sleepover.  This is how they both felt about it....

He could not have cared less....

...and she only smiled because I told her to, but isn't she gorgeous?!

Alright, so the two people I'm completely crazy about didn't think the Flower Carpet was cool enough to miss a sleepover or a day at home relaxing, and the "only" chance to see it had no impact on them whatsoever, but hey, I was ecstatic!  

The crowd was ridiculous, but I figured if they were all there then they probably felt the same way I did about wanting to see a Flower Carpet, so I tried not to get annoyed.  For a better view we went to the Musee de la Ville de Bruxelles so that we could look down on the carpet from their balcony. 

I'm sure you can guess that a "flower carpet" is a carpet made out of flowers, and you'd be exactly right.  The flowers were all flat on the ground, they didn't look to be potted so I'm not sure how they were planted or how they were staying in place without being blown away by the wind, but it was so neat!  The theme of the carpet this year was dedicated to "The 50 years of Turkish migration to Belgium." 

The Flower Carpet most definitely resembled a turkish rug!  The colors were stunning and I was so happy to be looking at it!  
It was from this viewpoint that Eric spotted a beer museum in the distance (leave it to Eric to spot anything that has anything to do with beer), so we headed in that direction.

And I am still working on getting my pictures to turn out better in situations with very little light.  UGH!  The museum wasn't that big but a beer did come with the ticket price so we left happy campers!
We spent the rest of our time walking around the Gros Markt, ate lunch, sampled chocolate, took pictures, and remembered how much we loved Belgium!  

Me and my feta salad.  I LOVE feta!

But, it was by this point that we were all tired and ready to go home.  The crowd was just ridiculous and we had seen what we wanted.
I don't think that Brussels has gotten a fair shot on the different Facebook pages I keep up on.  Yes, we for sure loved Brugge more, but Brussels has lots to offer!  There were a few different museums we never made it to that I'd like to see someday, but overall, I am perfectly happy with our day trip to Brussels!  
After experiencing the Flower Carpet I know now that I would have been very disappointed if I had never visited Brussels.  I'm glad I didn't figure that out after the opportunity was gone!  And even though Eric didn't get a day to relax, and is back to work today on a Sunday, and Isabelle missed a sleepover, they both feel the same exact way.  I guess that is what our time here is all about.... these kinds of opportunities to figure out what we like and don't, the good experiences and the bad, and memories...... lots and lots of memories!  Thanks Brussels, for a really great memory!

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