|Me and Brendan Gleeson|
I left Copenhagen on a fast night train to Amsterdam; fast being 16 hours through Cologne. Slow night trains go through Berlin. Given that Bruges is 4 hours from Amsterdam by train (a tough journey for a day trip), I decided to just continue the long train journey immediately and spend the next night in Bruges.
It's true, Bruges is pretty fookin sweet - when the largest/wealthiest city of the 14th century has its harbor silt up and disappears from the world scene for a few centuries , it stays well preserved. And the beer:
Magnificent. The Germans talk considerable smack about the "chemicals" Belgians put in their beer; all I know is, those chemicals are DELICIOUS. Had a fine night out drinking with a couple other guys in the hostel.
Took a tour of the De Haave Maan Brewery (the only remaining active Bruges brewery, IIRC), went on a cruise down the canals, and basically wandered around for a while.
Oh, and I did see a dwarf, but she didn't appear particularly racist or under the influence of horse tranquilizers.
Weather back to grey after sunny days up north, unfortunately.
I'm going to do a real entry once I've spent more than an hour in the city, but here's some quick observations before I forget them:
- Hosteling is difficult and expensive. Maybe I'm here at a busy time, but I had trouble reserving at many places a week in advance (unheard of anywhere else I've been; in fact, I reserved here with a larger lead time than anywhere else). Not only is the hostel expensive, they're nitpicky with fees; Internet access is 3 Euros an hour(!). It's not like I'm the center, either; I'm out in Zeeburg.
- There's some sort of Magic: The Gathering tournament in town - the hostel is filled with nerdy guys playing cards.