This morning was a dream. "I got baked in Brussels". Now before you get worked up and question my morality, let me clarify. There is a bakery about 20 steps from our place called "I Got Baked in Brussels" that makes the most delicious doughnuts (as seen above). Laura and I enjoyed our, you guessed it, lattes and chocolate and lemon poppyseed doughnuts respectively and reflected about how lucky we have been to have so much just fall into place on this trip.
We meandered around the city a bit and got our bearings. We passed building after building that we had to stop and take in. Brussels is just so visually pleasing. We would turn a corner in a seemingly average alley and be knocked off our feet by the magnificent architectural triumphs the city has to offer. There were more than a few to say the least. That said, maybe my most memorable "stumble-upon" was the brass band we wandered on to and simply had to stop and listen for a bit. You can listen to them below.
As you can hear, they were just happy. You couldn't help but bounce around while they made Coldplay even cooler.
Our unintentional last stop of the day (I'll explain why in a bit) was a conglomerate of two museums, The Royal Museum and The Modern Museum. We spent hours between the two, wandering and finding the most compelling pieces, at least to us. We found every interactive the museum had to offer as well, which is where the next photo comes from. Surrounded by beautiful, awe-inspiring art, we figured we had to give it a go (in the section presumably designed for kids, but hey, ya gotta do whatcha gotta do). In the foreground is my portrait of Laura and Laura's portrait of me is in the background. Needless to say, we'll leave the art to the artist.
It was when we left the museum that our day took an unexpected turn. We stepped out onto the square where there were hundreds of police officers and law enforcement vehicles. I had a pit in my stomach as my brain racked from the mildest to most severe reason to bring all of these officers together. We walked around a bit before seeing a barbwire barricade. At that point we looked up "News in Brussels" on our phones. We had our answer in seconds. President Trump had arrived. Over 10,000 people had RSVPed to a march and protest event on Facebook. We had stellar timing. From there, we went back to the area of Brussels we felt we knew best, and found a bench so we could sort out our plans. Not long after, we saw Belgian militia men being dispatched, machine guns and all. We promptly decided that we could very much use a night in, so we returned to our flat and relaxed.
The next morning, before we were supposed to board our train, we decided we needed to get our hands on a Belgian waffle or two while we had the chance. We looked it up and found a shop that opened at 8am and made our way over there. It was closed. So that was good. We ended up going into a French bakery called Paul, because we needed our daily cup of joe at least. I pointed at the glass case of backed goods and asked the woman if that was quiche. Laura clarified with her, "you know, the salty, savory egg pie?". The Belgian woman nodded yes vehemently. We paid and sat outside. That's the story of the time I unintentionally had cheesecake for breakfast.