Monday, February 25, 2008

Belgium


















I appologize that I'm so late with this posting. I kept forgetting to have hubby upload the pictures. I should learn to do it myself. Anyway, we spent 4 days and 3 nights in Bastogne, Belgium. It's the perfect place to go for a weeked, because you can do everything there is to do and not rush. We stayed at Hotel Melba which is run by Best Western. It was a good hotel and their breakfast buffet was very good. Bastogne is nicknamed "nuts city". It was near here during the battle of the bulge in WWII that General McAuliff responded to the German request for our surrender with, "Us surrender? Ah nuts!" To read the truly amazing story click here. Do go read it. It's short and is a first hand account of what happened on that day. In Bastogne there is a memorial to the Americans who fought and died saving the town. There are several museums and it really is worth the trip if you are near. The things I loved most about it are: that they have never forgotten what we did for them, the flag of the United States still flies in the town square right next to the Belgian flag and at the same height as far as I could tell. There is a very old church in the town that has a clock and bells that chime on each quarter of the hour and of course on the hour. The chime is the first bars of the Star Spangled Banner. I was so proud. Proud to be an American, proud of what our men did there, and amazed at and proud of the Belgians of that time. When we learn of history it is from the American point of view. There, I learned of the battle of the bulge from their point of view. Those people stayed and fought for their town (mostly women, children and old people as the able bodied men would have been off fighting) with no provisions or munitions. They worked hand in hand with our soldiers, fed them and tended their wounds, even burrying them. The allies would fly over and drop supplies by parachute. Whoever got the supplies got them to whomever needed it. They shared everything they had. The women would sew clothing, scarves and I imagine bandages out of the parachute material. What an amazing people! To this day they still love Americans and in Europe that's often not the case anymore.



We took our time as my mobility was better than it is now but wasn't good. Thankfully a friend loaned me a set of canes her husband had used in the past. They have been a Godsend. We went out on the Sunday night and had Belgian waffles. They are better than the kind we find in the states. Of course they call them waffles lol not Belgian wallfles. Mine was light as a cloud, with a bit of powdered sugar, lots of fresh fruit, a small scoop of vanilla icecream and a touch of whipped cream. Delish! We also each had a crepe. Mine was filled with ham, cheese, and egg, Alan's with egg and chese. It was all so good!






So here are some pics of our trip.
The first is of Alan standing by an old army jeep in what is called the Latin quarter of town.
2. St. Peter's church also in the Latin quarter. This is the church that chimes the first bars of the Star Spangled Banner.
3. Our Crepes.
4. My belgian waffle.
5. Our room at the hotel. It was painted pink and purple. I have never seen a hotel room painted in such a way.
6. Me standing in front of a Sherman Tank in the town square. If you look closely at the top of the pic, you can see the American flag flying.
7. Bust of General "ah nuts!" McAuliff in the town square aka McAuliff square.
8. La Porte de Treves (scroll down to the bottom of the page)
9. museMaison Mathelin um next to St. Peter's.
10. Le Mardasson - the American memorial.
11. From the top looking toward Bastogne.
12. From the top looking down to the inside.
13. Heading down to the crypt where there are 3 prayer rooms. One Jewish, one Catholic and one Protestant.
14. the Cady Monument, inaugurated on 4 September 1949 in the presence of Emile Cady's father and sister. The monument recalls the resistance and withdrawal of the Belgian troops on 10 May 1940. Caporal Cady was shot during the evacuation of his shelter and was able to come back to the Belgian lines with his machine gun.

3 comments:

Morgan said...

This post was sooo cool! Thanks so much for sharing those pics with us, too! They were great...but I got hungry looking at the crepes and waffle. A hotel room painted pink and purple???? I've never heard of that. That's very different.

I'm sorry that you're not as mobile as you were on your trip! :hug: I'll be praying for you in that regard.

Thanks so much for the comments on my blog! They brightened my day so much, and guess what? You use the same exact pens that my Mama does. :) I hope you have a good day today, and take care.

Pam said...

This post made me start drooling, the photos of the food you know!

I'm fine by the way, just recuping from the flu in our household. Thanks for your concern!

Janie said...

I loved these pictures! The trip looked like alot of fun. My boys were jealous that you got to see a place with so much history!

That food!!!!!!!!!!!! I practically had to wipe the drool off the keyboard. Yummo!!!!