I'm Olivia. I'm a perpetually hungry redheaded girl from New York. I eat, sleep and breathe Korean pop music. I speak French and am studying Korean language and business in school. This fall, I'm setting forth on an exciting and terrifying (seriously I'm so nervous I might pee) solo journey across Europe. Hopefully this experience is full of bright, fun, and exciting as well as ridiculously stupid experiences that I can share with you!
Oh my god everyone I'm so sorry, it's been so long since I've posted. I've been really caught up in things. This entry is gonna be a long one because I have like 4 days to go over. Here we go~
So last time I wrote an entry I was still in Strasbourg. On my last full day there I went to the Parc de l'Orangerie which has a free zoo in it! It was really hard to take pictures though because each pen was surrounded by two rows of fencing. I did manage to get some however.
I was pretty hungry after walking around. There was a saurkraut restaurant I really wanted to go to, but the website gave really nondescript answers such as "Open for Lunch/Dinner," with no times attached. I went there at a perfectly reasonable lunch hour to find it awkwardly empty and not open. Anywho, I found a place nearby and had my first tarte flambée! I almost ordered that and a pizza too, not realizing it was a pizza. The waiter told me it would be too much food. I agreed. Anyway, a tarte flambée is a dish unique to the Alsace region. It's a piece of thinly rolled bread dough covered in fromage blanc, crème fraiche, onions, and lardons. SO YUMMY OMFG.
After that I went to the Alsacian Museum, which was actually really interesting! It had furniture and artifacts from Alsacian life but one thing that seriously killed me where the types of styles of dress. It was spread across three houses and was honestly a bit of a labyrinth.
This is a dollhouse...so many crazy details!
THESE ARE FOR CHRISTMAS COOKIES. CHRISTMAS. COOKIES.
The ticket I bought was also good for entry into the Palais Rohan. There are three differet museums inside; an archeology museum, an art museum, and a decorative arts museum. The archeology one was cool for about 5 seconds and then I got bored. The decorative arts museum was probably the best part.
YES I TOOK A FANCY MIRROR SELFIE MOVING ON....
That night I met up with a guy from Strasbourg for a drink. We met and talked for a couple of hours. He was really nice! The next day I got on the train to Brussels. I had two changes but made all of them with time to spare and met a nice guy on the way to Luxembourg. So I got off the train at the central station and took the bus to the street where my hostel was (supposedly.) This was one of the single most confusingly located hostels in the world. Not that I have much experience to go by, but I'd say I'm pretty correct. Also let me talk about this hostel for a second.
I'm putting on my special hat reserved for ranting, just a second...
I AM ON THE TOP FREAKING FLOOR, WHICH WOULD BE FINE IF MY CARD READER DIDN'T BREAK EVERY SINGLE DAY, CAUSING ME TO HAVE TO GO UP AND DOWN THE STAIRS THREE TIMES AT LEAST. At first, they give me a new key card, and then I go up and try it. Yeah it doen't work. I trudge back down to the lobby, and then the person behind the desk has to come up and restart the machine. Also I think when I first got here there was someone in my room who was sleeping in the bed I was supposed to be in. I came in last night and there was a new girl all set up on my bed. I was seriously confused, and it turns out that the cleaning people werent sure who checked out and who didn't, so they took all my sheets. I'm keeping the second towel you gave me, hostel. Consider that your apology.
No but I mean it's not all that bad. The coffee sucks, yes. It's right next to the Red Light District, yes. But I mean it's not an uncomfortable place and the people at the desk are really helpful and nice. Anyway,
I went to the grocery store around the corner and bought some pasta and apples. I made the pasta in the kitchen and met two guys who were from Australia and France. I went to this bar with them called Delirium, where there's over 500 different kinds of beer. I drank a lot that night, and actually threw up for the first time. I didn't feel so great the next day. We also went to a really cool club called Madame Moustache or some name like that. They played a lot of old music and it kind of felt like being in a circus.
The next day I woke up feeling pretty nauseous but decided the best cure for it would be to go out and walk all over the city! Woo~
I walked to the Magritte museum near the Palais de Justice. If you came at 1:00 PM, your ticket was free! This museum was so amazing, Magritte is hands down one of my favorite artists, and a lot of his works that I'd only seen in books were housed there! Unfortunately, you couldn't take pictures in the museum. I snuck one in the hallway anyway, and in the bathroom there were Magritte shaped mirrors! Had to take a selca~
After that I walked to the Grand Place. It was so beautiful and really hard for me to take pictures of
on my phone.
Also I did a totally touristy thing and went to the Rue des Bouchers for lunch. It's full of seafood restaurants that almost exclusively tourists go to. The guy sold me on a three course meal for 12.50 with a free drink. And you know what? It was freakin' delicious. Who cares if it's touristy? The waiters did give me a little bit of a weird vibe. One actually thought I was Russian....anyway...
After that I walked to the Comic Museum. It was interesting but for 8 euro, the exhibit was too small.
Found this guy on the way
Also I found this covered pedestrian walkway called Galleries St. Hubert...the stores inside were expensive, too expensive, but the walkway itself was really pretty!
That night I met a boy from Japan at the hostel (Hi Kizuki!) We started talking together and decided to go to the Atomium together the next day. I have probably spoken the most Japanese in the past 2 days in my entire life. I've heard it so much that I'm starting to think other people are speaking it. But this is great practice, and Kizuki is so much fun! We took the subway to the Atomium. To go inside it costs about 11 euro, or a combination ticket with Mini Europe for 23.50. We figured since we had seen most of the real things that we would skip Mini-Europe. Also, from the panorama in the Atomium, you could see the entire park! We were laughing about it.
After that we walked around the city center and got waffles. I got whipped cream in my hair and the forks they gave us were really really tiny.
Look at those baby forks...
FOR SOME REASON I don't really know, this fountain is extremely famous. It's silly yes, but it's literally like the size of my foot. There's a museum that has different outfits that have been made for him from all different countries. Yeah I don't know.
That night we cooked dinner in the hostel. He made me miso soup and we listened to Ghibli music together :P.
The next day I went to Bruges with another guy from Australia I met in the hostel. We went to a small chocolate museum together, and at the end they gave us a demonstration on how to make pralines and gave us a sample. It was so tasty.
I ate this for lunch...I was really hungry.
I went on a bewery tour and got a beer at the end! This kind is called Brugse Zot Blonde, and here it was unfilitered, which I guess is the only place you can get it like that! Also there was a famous Japanese person here filming a television show. I asked one of the camera men who she was, but didn't recognize her name..
Obviously I ate another waffle...Also if you ever go to Bruges, as touristy as it sounds, do the boat tour. It was so beautiful, and the boat captain provides the commentary in English, Dutch, French, or German depending on the majority of the group. You see the city in an entirely different way!
Did you see "In Bruges?"
Anyway I came back and hung out with Kizuki some more. We made dinner together again and watched AKB 48 videos on my computer. Now I'm sitting in the stairwell because the wifi here is really good. I'm actually exhausted from today. Tomorrow I'm going to keep it kind of low-key and sleep in. I also have to do laundry and homework.