Belgium
Arrondissement of Nivelles

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    • Day24

      Cap Gris and Cap Nez

      July 18, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 24 °C

      On our way to our Chateau, we stopped at some lovely beaches along the way. As it was a clear day, you could see the coast of England across the English Channel - it is only 24kms away. While we drove around we also saw lots of memorials to WWII, which is what I would expect as we we’re quite close to Dunkirk.Read more

    • Day24

      Girls trip to the Opal Coast

      July 18, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

      We didn’t want to head off too early and get caught in commuter traffic, so we took it easy and headed off about 10am. It was a pretty smooth drive most of the way, and our first stop was Wissant, a lovely village on the coast of France. We stopped at a restaurant called Charlemagne, where we had Moules Frites and a lovely rosé, which was delightful. This dish is a specialty of France which my grandmother introduced me to when I was in my early 20’s. After lunch, we walked around the town - Brigitte has rented a house in the village before and so she knows the area.Read more

    • Day23

      Sunny Brussels

      July 17, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

      Today we had an easy morning just catching up and not doing much, which is really lovely when you have been on the go for the last three weeks non-stop. We headed off to see Brigitte’s mum, my aunt Paulette around noon. Paulette lives in Everberg which is about 30 minutes away. Brigitte doesn’t have her key to Paulette’s at the moment, and so we had trouble getting in as Paulette was cleaning the pool. Finally we made enough noise to get her attention, and she came and let us in. We had a lovely lunch of cold cuts, a leek and potato quiche Paulette had made, and cheese, and then I tasted a peche plate (flat peach from France). It is one of the most delicious fruits I have ever had - so sweet and juicy and full of flavour - I will have to try and see if they are available in Melbourne. Just as we were finishing lunch, Nathalie and Sohan arrived for lunch and a swim.

      After lunch, we headed outside to sit by the pool and enjoy the warm weather. We had a lovely relaxing afternoon, and Nathalie’s partner, Ahmet, joined us for afternoon tea where we had a special cake from Brittany which Brigitte had got on an earlier trip there. We headed off about 4.30 pm and had a lovely steak and salad for dinner, and an early night as tomorrow we head off for a couple of days to the Opal Coast in Northern France.
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    • Day22

      Goodbye Hamburg Hello Brussels

      July 16, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

      The boys were up early (4am) to catch their flight from Hamburg to London, and then their connecting flight back to Melbourne. Everything went smoothly and they arrived home on Tuesday evening to a chilly Melbourne. I had a more civil departure time of 11.30 am, but still left for the airport just after 9 am, and I am glad I did. The trip there was quick, as was the check-in, but going through security took an hour as the line was huge. I didn’t have much time after I got through before it was time to board. Very quick flight and very easy once I got off the plane, just a long walk from the gate to collect my bag and then exit.

      My cousin, Brigitte, was there to greet me, and we then headed to Limal where she lives. We stopped to have lunch in the village, and then home. It was a very warm and sunny day in Brussels. In the afternoon Brigitte’s daughter, Nathalie, came for dinner with her son Sohan, who is a lovely boy. Brigitte’s ex-husband Luc, who is now one of her best friends, also dropped by to say hi. We had a nice evening just catching up, and Brigitte cooked a lovely prawn and pasta dish for dinner. It is so comfortable and easy with Brigitte and her family, and it doesn’t feel like it was 9 years ago that we last saw each other.
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    • Day21

      Seeing where Hans lived

      July 15, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ☀️ 25 °C

      After finishing our sightseeing in towns, Folke took us to see the apartment where my dad spent many years. It turns out that the Airbnb apartment we are staying in is only 10 minutes away on foot. It was nice to see the place where Hans lived in with his family. The apartment building has been renovated, and is in a very posh neighbourhood. We took a few photos and then headed back to our place with Meike and Folke to watch the World Cup final between France and Croatia, and we were able to use up many of the goodies our host Thomas had left us. It was a nice and relaxing way to finish our time with Folke, who had been a fantastic and generous guide, both in Berlin and Hamburg. He also organised taxis for us for the morning, which was a bit more complicated as we ordered two taxis to the same address in the same name, going to the airport but at different times. It was also nice for France to win the World Cup; they played very well throughout the tournament.

      After Folke and Meike left us to head home, we spent the evening packing as tomorrow the boys start their journey home and have an early start, and I head to Brussels to see more family, this time on the French side.
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    • Day21

      Lunch in Finkenwerder

      July 15, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ☀️ 27 °C

      We stopped for lunch at a lovely seafood restaurant before heading back to Landungsbrucken, which is Hamburg’s water station. Here we said goodbye to Fritz and Inka and the boys, who headed back to Buchholz.Read more

    • Day21

      Cruising on the Elbe

      July 15, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ☀️ 26 °C

      After Miniature Wonderland, we headed down to the river to catch a ferry from Grasbrook-hafen to Landungsbrucken, where we took another longer ferry trip up the Elbe to the island of Finkenwerder to have lunch - we saw lots of great sights along the way. Once there, we had a lovely lunch at a great seafood restaurant - most of us had fish - and we then caught the ferry back to Langdungsbrucken. Here we parted way with Fritz and Inka and the boys, to spend the remainder of the afternoon with Folke and Meike.Read more

    • Day21

      Miniatur Wunderland Hamburg

      July 15, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ☀️ 21 °C

      Another early start for us today, with a full agenda planned for our last day in Hamburg. We once again met the Bulda clan in central Hamburg, and made our way to Miniatur Wunderland. This was started by two bothers about 20 years ago. Initially, they found it difficult to get funding from the banks, but as popularity increased things changed. What struck me was the detail of the work - so far more than 760,000 hours have gone into building the displays. The displays transition from day to night in regular cycles, with thousands of lights coming on at ‘nighttime’. There is an area on Hamburg - the city, the airport and train station. There are also displays on middle Germany, Scandinavia, Italy, Bavaria, Switzerland, Austria and USA. I really liked Venice and Vegas. Angus enjoyed the hidden characters that don’t belong in a particular area, e.g. ET, Ghost Busters, Blues Brothers and Spider-Man. We spent much more time there than I thought we would need - it was really lots of fun, and we will need to return in future, as a number of new displays are planned within the next 1-2 years.Read more

    • Day20

      Buchholz and time with the Bulda family

      July 14, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ☀️ 26 °C

      We caught the train out to where Folke had parked his car in Hamburg, and then he drove the last part out to his family home in Buchholz, for us to spend time with the Bulda family. We had a wonderful time, and before we knew it, we had to head to the station to catch the train back to Hamburg. Fritz and Inka were wonderful hosts - Inka baked three delicious cakes - Blueberry, Cranberry with cream and a chocolate and walnut - all were excellent. We then had a cold supper or smorgasbord with wonderful German cold meats and cheeses and delicious grilled vegetables, the spread was reminiscent of what Helga would prepare for family gatherings. It is a pity we are so far away from so much of our family, we have such a small family on the Bulda side we need to ensure we keep up the contact which I will do.Read more

    • Day17

      Topography of Terror

      July 11, 2018 in Belgium ⋅ ⛅ 22 °C

      The last memorial we went to was the Topography of Terror. Between 1933 and 1945, the central institutions of Nazi persecution and terror were located at the site of The Memorial on Niederkirchnerstraße (formally Wilhemstraße and Prinz-Albrecht- Straße) including the offices of the Gestapo, the SS and from 1939 on the Reich Security Main Office. This exhibition was established in 1987 and provides information about the historical site and illustrates the European dimensions of the Nazi reign of terror.

      After WWII all the buildings were bulldozed. There is also a documentation centre that was designed by Berlin architect Ursula Wilms which provides information about the headquarters of the National Socialist SS and police state during the Third Reich and it shows the extent of the Nazi reign of terror throughout Europe.

      What struck me as I read the accounts of Hitler’s rise and the increasing atrocities taking place was how easily Hitler was able to secure power, the German people seemed to get caught up in all the rhetoric and national pride until it was too strong and powerful to stop or oppose.

      We began the day looking at beautiful architecture and landscaping and the influences of the Age of Enlightenment and then as the day progressed saw the ugly side of the human race and the unspeakable things done to fellow human because they had different beliefs or looked different - it was an exceptionally draining day but it was important to do. I haven’t put captions on these photographs as I think they are powerful on their own.
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    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Arrondissement de Nivelles, Bezirk Nivelles, Arrondissement of Nivelles, Нивел, Arondisamant Nivelles, Nivellesi ringkond, شهرستان نیول, Nivelles, Arrondissement di Nivelles, Arrondissement Nivelles, Nijvel, Nivelle, 尼韋爾區

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