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The journey home was as long and as tedious as the journey there, with the added bonus of stopping at a chocolate factory on the way. Alas, Willy Wonka wasn't home but I did buy rather a lot of Belgian chocolate. Yum! Bought the toy cat on the ferry and named him Archie as I had already mentioned. I also found the most adorable little Dalmation puppy toy too and they were on special offer so Mum-Ra bought a collie for Dad-Ra and I got the dalmation for free. I have named him Ioan since Ioan Gruffudd was in 102 Dalmations. Yeah, I spend most of my holiday money on toys. I'm 26 going on 6. I don't think I'll ever grow up

Journey home pics )

And that ends my Belgian adventure
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Lots of interesting and fun stuff today. We spent the morning in Ostende which is a lovely seaside resort. It also harbours a lovely 3 masted sailing ship called the Mercator. It's not quite from the Age of Sail, having been built in 1932 but it still looked cool. We got to take a full tour of the ship and I took lots of photos. In the afternoon we went to Ypres which was a major first world war battle site. Pretty much the whole city was flattened during the conflict and then rebuilt in the 1920s. You can hardly tell when you're looking at it. We went to one of the mass grave site and it's just impossible to process. How do you comprehend a war that killed 17 million people. It was quite moving stuff. Back to England tomorrow. This holiday has flown by

Ostende and Ypres. Not dialup friendly )
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Quiet day today. We went to Ghent in the morning and went into a few chruches. I also went up the belfry which was really scary but I got some good photos. We looked around a few shops but overall the city was pretty quiet. It was quite eerie really. Felt like a Sunday. In the afternoon it was raining so I stayed in the hotel room while Mum-Ra went back into Brugge to look at lace shops. Tomorrow is a full day of excursions so I hope the weather is better

Ghent. Not diaup friendly )
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Very pleasant day today aside from having to get up early. We went on a minibus tour of Brugge City Centre and then had the rest of the day to ourselves. We mostly shopped. I found a lovely gift shop that sold lots of nautical things (Brugge used to be a major trading city). I bought a Welcome Aboard sign for my door, a small wooden helm, a teddy bear in a Captain's uniform (already named Horatio) and a nautical journal complete with compass. I could have bought loads more but I didn't want to spend all my money at once. I did also buy a photo frame with an old map on it an a little model of a witch.We went on a canal boat tour which was lovely and we had lunch in a little street cafe. Brugge is a beautiful city and I took loads of photos

Brugge. Not dialup friendly )
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Mum-Ra always insists on going to Europe by coach and it takes bloody hours. Still, I spent a large portion of the journey asleep so it wasn't too bad. I always love going on the ferry as you can guarantee that no matter what the weather, the channel will be rough as hell and I love bopping up and down. On the way down I had time to explain to Mum-Ra all about the joys of Jamie Bamber. She was already familiar with him as it's her Hornblower DVDs I watched (really need to give them back and buy my own at some point). I then explained to her how I'd set up [livejournal.com profile] archielives. She picked up on the idea very quickly and wrote Archie Lives on my bottle of water. LOL.

I saw this absolutely adorable stuffed toy cat on the ferry. It had the biggest blue eyes and of course I immediately wanted to call him Archie. Haven't bought one yet but will pick one up on the way back.

Didn't take long to get to the hotel after we got to Calais and it seems really nice. The food is amazing and I expect to get very fat while I'm here. Full day in Brugge tomorrow. Should be good

Journey There pics )

Next lot of photos to come after I've been into town and bought some lunch

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