Monday, September 12, 2005

I'm catching up

We discovered this breakfast place just down the road from the guys’ apartment. Its called Panos and has a mind-blowing range of croissant, doughnuts, ├ęclairs and what not. It was just awesome!! We then went to the town hall for our residence permit, then to the police station in our commune for verification and since this place has only 2 pin plugs, we went to almost a dozen stores in search of an adapter and finally found one!

We then went to meet the academic coordinator at the University. The good news is that thee is no minimum requirement of courses that needs to be taken. I can take just one course and get away with it. Moreover, there are no attendance rules at the university either.

Then Ravi and I decided we were not going to have any fries or pitas or pizzas and went to a Vietnamese restaurant. It was rather expensive but we both shared a 15 Euros menu which served us a 4 course meal of soup and salad, starter, rice and curry and dessert. We were quite full by the time we were done. We were in a major dilemma because we were not sure what the appropriate tip would be and we solved the problem by coming out of the place without tipping the lady at all.

We then shifted my baggage from the guys apartment to my room, and I settled in the stuff and had a nice, warm bath. We then took a bus to the Grand Palace. This is a square surrounded by 4 imposing buildings. While the most impressive building is now used as a tow hall or some other government building, another building has been converted into a museum. The other 2 buildings have now been let out for use by restaurants and stores. For those who can afford it, it is quite an experience dining in an old palace.

The Grand Palace is THE tourist attraction of Brussels and was teeming with students when we went there. It was extremely beautiful because it is so well lit and is quite a romantic place. In fact, there were a few couples here and there just hugging each other in the middle of the square or kissing and it wasn’t corny at all, but rather nice.

We again had a pita-fries kind of meal in one the alleys behind the Grand Palace. The waiter was quite a charming guy who spoke to us in the few Hindi words he had picked up and told us he would give us a discount the next time we came back to his snack bar with the latest Bollywood songs!!!

Belgium is very famous for its waffles and the back alleys today were filled with the smells of freshly baked waffles. I bought a waffle with banana and chocolate cream and it was truly delicious. I also did my first bit of shopping there by buying a few boxes of the famous Belgian chocolates. I promptly put them in the suitcase so that I would not be tempted to open them up now itself. And after the gifts I bought with my first salary, this was the next best feeling I got on buying gifts for someone else.


Aravind said...

Just one course? No attendance rules?????

tom naka said...

Hey, you have a great blog here! I'm definitely going to bookmark you! I have a vietnamese restaurant site/blog. It pretty much covers vietnamese restaurant related stuff.

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