Saturday, July 15, 2017

Jack and our travels to Belgium

If you are a Facebook person and a friend of mind you may have already been aware that my father Jack passed away last week at the age of 96. He been around the cycling world for ever and tributes continue to flow to my Facebook page, "Cycling Scrapbook" such is the measure of the man they called a living legend in cycling circles. We had a lot of fun over the years didn't we Jack?

We flew out from Melbourne on our planned trip just prior Dad falling into a deep sleep but we did spend time together when he was more lucid. 
My sister and daughter were there in his final hours as we were on our way to Brussels.

We received the news as we settled into our hotel at Brussels - it wasn't a surprise to hear that he had been in and out of consciousness not long after I returned to Melbourne from the Gold Coast in Queensland.
Dad lived a full life - he set a good example to us kids.

Now its time for Sue and I to follow that example by enjoying our travels in Belgium, Nederland and for the seventh time - France to visit our friends in the Loire.

We are currently in Bruges for four nights after only one night in Brussels to sleep off jet-lag. Having arrived in Bruges yesterday, we are yet to see the full delights of this historic town. We did however get in afternoon and evening walks to enjoy both lunch and dinner. 
We return to Ghent before meeting our son, Andrew and spending time in Amsterdam. Then back to Brussels to help Andrew move to another house (yes, that was part of the plan for this trip). 
After fulfilling our parental duties, its off to France and the Loire Valley.

After arriving in Brussels, we headed down to the Grand Place for Moules Frites with the rest of the tourists.
After returning to our hotel room, the jet-lag took its toll and we dozed for several hours before going to dinner.
We return to Brussels later in the month to fully appreciate what the city has to offer.
I've heard it said that Bruges is a mini Venice and it certainly has that charm about it but a bit more endearing.
Love to see people out on bikes and not being harassed by angry motorists as happens occasionally in Australia.
A town of many reflections!
Bruges' buildings are unlike those we have seen in our travels in Italy and France.
Its a nice change and we are looking forward to what our future journey has to offer. 
We settled in the Market Square for lunch which consisted of shared plates of pate and salmon on toasted bread which we washed down with a white wine for Sue and a huge beer for me. 
The sun was setting as we walked home from dinner - it must have been about 10.00 pm.
Think we'll really come to enjoy these evening walks while we are here.
We will now post each day so please to travel with us on the Blog.


  1. May your father rest in peace. He is probably watching your trip around Bruges from above, enjoying himself immensely. I wish I was in Bruges again.

    1. Hels,
      He lived a long life with a wicked sense of humour - will try to fill his shoes. We are in Bruges for four days before moving on to Ghent.

  2. Hi from Mouson France. We spent a wonderful week in Bruges aboard our boat close to the heart of the city. We have folding bikes onboard and rode everywhere.
    Bruges is fabulous - a medieval Disneyland, Ghent is also fabulous but feels like a real medieval city - full of life. In Ghent there does not seem to be any traffic signs but trams, cars, bikes and crowds seem to make their way without difficulty.
    Have fun.
    Glad to hear that you Dad was such a wonderful example to you and your family and will live on in your warm memories of him.
    Regards Janine

  3. Janine - thank you for your kind comments regarding my father. Yes, Bruges has retained much of its medieval architecture. I'm told that this was due to it being untouched in war years. Ghent is our next stop today.


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