We came back to Brussels on the 26th, to give the cat some pats and fresh water. On the 27th, it snowed for the first time this winter.
|Excited for snow!|
The 28th promised to be (below-)freezing cold but sunny all over Belgium, so we decided to drive into the countryside to see the Reading Between the Lines church/art installation I featured in my Buzzfeed list of Europe's most beautiful churches. It was pretty hard to find; we had an address from the internet but that just took us into the vicinity (eventually, after two false starts due to closed roads) and we looped around a few times before some locals actually reversed their car to give us unsolicited directions. I knew it was in the middle of a field, but thought you'd be able to see it from the road. Turns out you have to park (for reference, I think we parked on Sint-Truidersteenweg near Grootloonstraat in Borgloon, but you can also come to it from the other side) and then walk a bit on a path, and it's actually really quite small. But beautiful, and we managed to stay there for at least half an hour or so by ourselves, since people conveniently left just as we got there and arrived just as we were leaving. We were hoping there would be plenty of snow on the ground, but although it rested around Brussels, there was only a little bit on the ground here. But it was still a lovely landscape, and I think the bright blue sky definitely showed it at its best.
|Driving - yes, driving - in the woods near Borglon|
|Slightly snowy fields on the way to the church|
|First sight of the church melting into the landscape. In general, it looked more transparent from further away, and more solid close-up|
|Who needs a selfie stick when you can do the old "self-timer on a fencepost" trick?|
|We tried a few jumping pictures, mainly realising the truth behind "white men can't jump". *Nice up-to-date reference to a movie I haven't seen and don't know what it's about other than presumably basketball and the travails of "reverse racism"|
|Let me out!|
|Really see-through from this side|
|I know, I know, I took too many photos|
|It's modelled after the traditional village church in the background|
After I'd finally taken enough photos from every conceivable angle, we drove to nearby Tongeren for lunch. We missed the weekly antiques market, but had a nice lunch sitting outside in the sunshine (near a space heater), visited the pretty basilica and climbed to the top of the one remaining medieval gate. It seems like a nice place - there's also a large beguinage and a Gallo-Roman museum to visit, but we didn't have time because we wanted to get back to Brussels at a reasonable time so Jules could relax and have dinner before driving back to Luxembourg.
|Statue of Ambiorix and the Tongeren basilica|
|View of Tongeren from on top of the medieval gate tower|
There you go, fun thing to do in Belgium #5. Happy New Year and see you in 2015!