To celebrate my birthday, we went to one of my favorite places in the world: Bruges. Town of canals, shell-shaped chocolates, step gables.
Even though it was February, Bruges drew a crowd. A word of warning to those visiting us in high season: plan your trip to Bruges for a non-weekend.
There was a great deal of art involved, plus considerable getting lost. Loved the Flemish Primitives at the Groeninge Museum. Why are they called Primitives? They seem very refined to me (except for certain paintings of flayings and Judgement Days). Liked the Brangwyns at the Arentshuis. Was very taken with a painting of a house carried off by angels in St. Salvatore Cathedral.
We did some shopping. As you can see, Phil found Beer Heaven and came home with six we'd never tried. Then we stopped for a cocktail at a cafe whose claim to fame was a visit by Marvin Gaye in 1982. They even had a "Marvin Gaye Menu." Though he just lunched there, apparently he ate seven courses. Mercy mercy me.
We had dinner at a lovely traditional restaurant, and on the train ride home I found myself staring at a student who had a perfect Flemish Primitive face (minus the plucked hairline). Now I see them everywhere. A fabulous day, though sadly, no sign of Colin Farrell. I may be too old for him now...