I rarely write about my travelling experiences… don’t know why but a better chunk of it has to do with the fact that I suck at narrations. However, leo was just pitia_ing some of my old photos and mahnnnn!! All the emotions just came rolling. I just kept smiling at the photos, reminiscing on those moments… what was happening, how I was feeling, what scents I was smelling, what my travelling buddy was doing. It was beautiful… over romanticists would even say magical but hey, I have a realist’s standards to maintain, so beautiful will have to work for now.
I stared at this photo of waffles, Ik… you’re prolly like, “Waffles??!!” yeahp, waffles.
But these my dear friend, were not just your normal typa waffles, these were the accredited and affluent Belgian Waffles.
Image 1: proudly showing off my Belgian waffle
Bought and devoured at the Brussels streets right at the junction of Rue du Chêne and the pedestrian Rue de l’Étuve (I can’t pronounce the words either… don’t sweat it). This was after marvelling at the beauty of the Grand Palace,
then munching the delicacy while staring at the petite 61 cm Bronze structure of the Mannequin Pis (the pissing boy).
Image 3: Photo portraying the sheer ‘don’t give a fuck’ attitude of the Mannequin Pis
All along I just kept thinking of how funny it is that a small boy answering the call of nature was highly celebrated and even revered; badly reflects on my poor knowledge for history, a simple Wikipedia search will inform you that in the 14th century, the city of Brussels was saved from an attack by a boy who happened to piss on the fuse of the explosives of the enemy armies; salvaging the city… or something of the sort. How the hell would I know, am just but a simple ‘Naivashian’ girl.
Then the atomium….ahhhhhhh…such a marvel.
Image 4: Me, in what seemed like a cool pose at the moment, only to be regretted later.
Simply described; its this 102 meter structure comprised of 5 gigantic balls made from stainless steel. It just serves to reflect on the ‘egos’ of the west in my humble sheer opinion. Like some scientist just went like “guys, I have this brilliaaantt idea; lets construct this non-functional gigantic steel structure… to…..you know, uhhh, show off our knowledge of the atomic structures and bonds…? I don’t know…” and boom, 26 million Euros were sprayed ivo tu. Anywho, let me quit being a hater and just admit, that yes, it really is such a beautiful structure.
Image 5: Me, again. This time in a more appropriate poise, one that’s intended for parents to ” “awwwww” at.
Truthfully, am a rural girl at heart. As such, a marvelous trip has to include some off-urban detour. And here we meet my first love (in the terms of a city you nosy peeps). DINANT!
Image 6; A girl trying to forcefully blend into the beauty of Dinant albeit successfully.
This is such a little hidden gem. The place where the saxophone was first invented by Adolph Sax in the 1840s.
Image 7: Rediscovering an underlying passion in advertisement modelling and presentations.
The serenity in this tiny city is just incredible. You can feel the slowly flowing River Meuse. You turn to your right and voila.. there stands the majestic Gothic unbowed Cathedrale de Notre Dame de Dinant (yeahp… Paris is not the only city with a Notre Dame Cathedrale). And from the moment you see just how neatly it seems to be carved into the caves, its grey Gothic spire threatening to poke the sky, you know its gonna be your lock-screen wallpaper for as long as you own a phone and phones are still a ‘thing’ (I have an evolution hypothesis on technology and it advancement so yeah, phones will just be a thing for a short while).
Image 8: The stunning gorgeousness of Dinant.
As if all this beauty was already not too impressive for this Naivashan soul, the Citadel de Dinant, a majestic 1051 fortress, beckons. From up here, one sees all there is to see, (well as far as the coordination of your cornea, pupil and retina allow). Its beautiful, its inspiring, its refreshing, just to be at this point that seems to be the edge of the world, the high point of it if I may say. And here, your buddy, overwhelmed by the inspiration oozing from the views, decides to try his hand at philosophy; pretty successfully if I may add.
Image 9: Philosopher Mugambi in his thought process
And to sum up your first ‘Belgian’ experience, you get the highly acclaimed Belgian Frites (fries). What makes these frites and not just any normal go-to fries, is the fact that;
- They are double-fried; ie fried twice
- Are soft and fluffy on the inside, surrounded by a crunchy, grease less crust, dipped in luxuriously flavorful sauces.
- Are wrapped in a paper
- Made from Belgian potatoes called Bintjes. (doubt this is what makes them special but hey… my kikuyuness doesn’t make me a waru specialist now does it?)
Image 10: A googled up image of Belgian fries because someone forgot to take a photo of theirs.
Ahhhh… but of course, what would a description of a ‘Belgian experience’ be without mentioning the sumptuous Belgian Chocolates??!! Quick tip; if you stroll into a chocolaterie in the Saint-Hubert Royal Galleries (one of the oldest shopping arcades of the world), ask to taste the chocolates. This you’ll do for free and its not reliant on whether you buy some or not… you’re welcome.
Ps; Note the irony of the title? Belgian experience yet only visited two Belgian cities? That’s how it sounds when one says African experience after visiting one city in an African country.