June’s weekends were the opportunity to visit two new cities for the first time!
Just google Dinant pictures. Such a strange-looking place. It’s in the Wallonia region so the language spoken is French. Home to the Sax museum, the Leffe beer abbey and a unique (I mean really unique) looking church.
As often happens, rivers are geographical boundaries that naturally separate regions. Where there’s boundaries, there’s probably been many wars fought to establish and protect those boundaries. The Meuse river was no different. As we read in plaques along the bank, the Battle of Dinant between France and Germany took place in 1914 resulting in a massacre with thousands dying from both sides and Charles de Gaulle injured (THE Charles de Gaulle).
Onto happier topics! We went in the afternoon as a day trip. Out of those three options what do you think we ended up doing? Of course! Visiting Maison Leffe and learning about the beer’s history. I learned about growing hops (a very important ingredient in beer); about how to ferment beer three times (Leffe has a popular triple-fermented beer); about why monks were the ones who produced beer (because they knew how to read, write and inherited brewing knowledge from others); and my favourite about alcoholic beverages meaning sterile beverages. Water could be a bit sketchy and carry diseases so beer was often a safe drink!
You could say: want water? “Nah, thanks. I’m not sure about the water quality, better have beer to be safe.” LOL.
It was an interactive tour and for €9, we got to sample at least 3 types of beer and just hang out in an abbey for a couple of hours. Would recommend!
International Yoga day in Brussels
The other day of my weekend, I joined Tim’s colleagues for International Yoga day in Brussels. OMG! The heat that day, the sun was shining as I’ve never seen it shine in Brussels. It was incredibly warm. So warm that during the practice dozens of people got up and walked to find shade under trees. Global warming, hello, is that you?
My sister was doing a summer tour visiting different European capitals. I had to go to Madrid to get some paperwork done. Without knowing exactly where she is, I casually text her on the morning before I leave to Madrid. And guess what? She was travelling to Madrid on the same day! We coincided! How amazing! I had booked my flight months in advance and so did she but we never talked about it.
We managed to meet in the airport and went to find my AirBnB together. It was my first time in Madrid so we did probably one of the most popular things: Reina Sofía Museum followed by a stroll around the botanical gardens it was really lovely stress free activity. In the evening we went out for dinner. We chose a very rich and tasty Indian restaurant downtown.
Aaand that was pretty much it for me in Madrid. I have to go back for a little longer.