Today I was very productive! I had class in the morning and then went to lunch with Pierre and Senta, my German and Slovenian classmates. We had a good long discussion about everything from NATO to Germans speaking English to rock music. In English, of course.
Then I managed to get a few job applications in, though I’m going to have to start prostrating myself at Irish pubs or tapas bars or something if I plan to get any sort of job at all. Things seem to be moving slowly in that department. Too slowly.
I was going to visit a museum (the Chocolate Museum? The Musical Instrument Museum? The Horror Art Museum? There are so many choices!), but most of them are closed on Monday, so instead I ran errands and ended up near the Grand Place, where I took lots of pictures and bought speculoos at Dandoy, supposedly one of the best bakeries in Brussels. It was worth it for the ambience alone, with its apothecary look and dark wooden paneling and red velvet and high shelves full of cookies and chocolates, all dainty and delicate and artfully wrapped. I went there specifically for the speculoos, a traditional Brussels cookie involving cinnamon, spice, sometimes almonds, and usually a windmill pattern. I couldn’t resist opening the bag I bought, so I wandered right down the street to the Grand Place, where I marveled at the architecture and munched my cookie, which was light, crunchy, and delicious. They will be fantastic with tea in the afternoon, which is how I plan to eat them, savoring each one.
It’s so easy to wander in Brussels, to let one street lead to another and to follow them aimlessly, taking occasional detours when something around a corner looks fascinating and strange (which it often does). There are many hidden corners, and it’s easy to imaging you’ve seen everything, and then you come across a plaza you didn’t even know existed, full of tiny shops and curious items. There’s a lot more to Brussels than meets the eye.