I spent this past weekend in Brussels recovering from Amsterdam the weekend before and the EU Summit just days before. It was honestly really nice to spend a weekend exploring parts of Brussels that we had not before. On Friday we had class at the Parlementarium, which is an interactive visiting center for the European Parliament. There were a lot of interactive activities to help you learn more about the history, founding and functions of the EU. It was early in the morning, but we definitely enjoyed it.
After class Haley, Caroline and I went to a Turkish lunch buffet in Place London, which is a small area near the Parliament that has outdoor cafes and bars. It was a great start to the day.
Later, we explored the city. We ran into some absolutely breathtaking parks and decided that one of these days we need to take a bottle of wine and some sandwiches for a picnic.
That evening, we met up with students from a Mizzou Political Science study abroad group that was in Brussels for the weekend at Celtica (a touristy, but still fun bar). It was great to see my friend Max and show him a good time in the city I currently call home.
On Saturday, I had to get up early to work on a story in Ligny (it’s in Belgium). 200 years ago Napoleon Bonaparte was defeated at the Battle of Waterloo and the bicentennial has all kinds of reenactments and ceremonies that we are covering for work. Well, Ligny was Napoleon’s last victory and they staged a whole campsite for a reenactment. The story that I covered was the actor playing Napoleon during the battle arrived at the campsite. It was really funny because the actors stayed in character the entire time even though it was not the day of the real reenactment. People were cooking over campfires, making ammunition, riding horses and practicing military marches. I got to interview the person playing Napoleon. When I asked him how he prepares to play such a key historical figure he said, “It’s easy. I am Napoleon Bonaparte.” He was funny and so were the other actors that I interviewed. It was definitely not ideal working 10 hours on a Saturday, but it was a fun story and experience.