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First blog from Europe and I will start by saying that Internet connectivity from hotels in Europe is spotty. So occasionally these posts will be a day or two late and links to the latest photos might not go to the very latest photos. But, do know we’re trying.
You might want to consider checking out our Facebook site for a quicker looks at photos. Those go up in low resolution so doesn’t take quite so much time and less chance for connection error.
But having said all that, we’re here and we’re excited to get started. We had good flights out of GSP and Newark and arrived in Brussels pretty much on schedule on Monday morning. We had a smooth clearance through Belgium customs, collected our luggage (it was all there), and made our way down to the train terminal within the airport to validate our Eurail passes and find out which train to take downtown.
So in less than two hours after landing we were walking out of the Central train station in the heart of Brussels. By this time most of us had been up around 24 hours. The first two days of the Europe trips are always very long and tiring. We attempted to get our bearings and figure out how to walk the 20-30 minutes to our hotel. And that, as usual, is our first adventure on European soil. Not to bore you, we did get to our hotel but those 20 minutes ended up taking a lot longer than that. Along the way we did have lunch from a stand-up counter. Nothing was written in English on the signs so the boys had to ask a lot of questions.
We eventually made it to the hotel and checked in. Rooms wouldn’t be ready for another 90 minutes so we stored our luggage and went out for a short walking tour. Our biggest attraction is a silly statue of a little boy who for some reason attracts thousands of visitors a day. Along the way we saw some great Belgium architecture and many boys sampled their first Belgium waffle or chocolate or both.
Returned to the hotel for about three hours of rest before walking two minutes to dinner in a neighborhood restaurant. It was nice to sit down. According to leader Doug Williams, our pedometer keeper, we walked 11 miles on Monday. And that was it for the day. I think most kids were asleep before 8:30.
Plenty planned for Tuesday.