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Belgium

Antwerp Then (1950) and Now (2016) - 24 April

25 April - a Rest Day

storm
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April 24
For Antwerp I picked the Ruben's house tour because I had photos of Daddy's from there
Stained glass detail from 1950

Stained glass detail from 1950


and I wanted to see the zoo and the Central RR station, because I had photos from those to places also. I had wanted to shop, but of course it was Sunday and the shops were not open.

It was rainy and cold, and I was warned about cobblestones, but we put on our coats and I put on my raincoat and we ventured forth.
Crossing from one boat to another

Crossing from one boat to another


We met the guide and it started to rain. Bob had a poncho and he put it on. Then it started to sleet or hail. I got off the scooter and went under the roof of the parking shed that was there but there was a 2.5 foot high barrier to get the scooter over so Bob sat on the scooter with his poncho spread over it for awhile and finally gave in and lifted the scooter to where it was more sheltered. It was both wet and cold. I had not realized that we would walk the distance to Ruben's house. The streets were OK for the scooter but it was raining and very windy (some people's umbrellas were turned inside out) and I was afraid to take my camera out. I tried taking photos with my cell phone but it was hard to manage both the scooter and the cell phone
Accidental selfie in the rain

Accidental selfie in the rain


because there is no handle on the cell phone and I have to hold it in my hand instead of hanging it around my neck
Guide in the rain

Guide in the rain


Antwerp street in the driving rain

Antwerp street in the driving rain


We got to Rubin's house and everyone had to put all purses into lockers.
lockers at Rubens house

lockers at Rubens house


The guide said that I could take the scooter in to the studio part (which was very big - they had the big pictures there and could take them out with a crane) and into the garden but I could not take it into the house itself. This was not a surprise so I was not unbearably disappointed. So we went into the studio. There was a ramp into the studio and I went down faster than either of us would have thought was reasonable (it was steep and the scooter has no brakes, so I basically slid down almost into the wall at the end). By this time my back was painful and I felt a bit nauseated. We sat on benches while the guide explained Rubens paintings.
The Bear Hunt

The Bear Hunt


I do not remember why this one is called the Bear Hunt when the hunter obviously has a deer. The guide explained how the apprentice system worked. Rubens was a rich man - he had a house and a studio in town and a couple of big country places. He would do the sketches of the paintings and then the apprentices would fill in the blanks. If you wanted him to paint it himself, you paid him extra.
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Adam and Eve

Adam and Eve


In Rubens' day, being fat meant that you were rich, and being pale meant that you didn't have to work out in the sun.
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Rubens self portrait

Rubens self portrait

A Lady at the Fish Market

A Lady at the Fish Market


And explained that each painting was like a movie - each part of the painting had a meaning. For instance in this picture, the fact that there are apples at a fish market has a meaning (I remember it being something about showing that the lady is having an affair) Then we went into the garden
Garden gate

Garden gate

Ruben's garden

Ruben's garden

Pagoda in the garden

Pagoda in the garden

Blooming wisteria

Blooming wisteria

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and I took photos of the scaffolding and the details of the house. There were two sections to the house and they were two different architectural styles - one half had scaffolding on it.
Scaffolding on  Rubens house

Scaffolding on Rubens house

Scaffolding

Scaffolding


archway

archway


and the statues that Daddy had photos of. I didn't get a photo of the stained glass in the dining room but at least I got one photo.
Statues in the garden of Ruben's house

Statues in the garden of Ruben's house


Statues 2016

Statues 2016

Then and now

Then and now


Then I went back to the entrance area and bought a small notepad as a gift for our cat sitter
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and then I lay down on a bench and tried to straighten out my back so it wouldn't hurt. They picked us up after the house tour and we continued walking. It was better weather now - the sun was out although it was still cold.
Tree in bloom

Tree in bloom


Advertisement for a furniture store

Advertisement for a furniture store


We walked through another building which the guide wanted to show us.
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approach

approach


chandelier that the guide wanted to show us

chandelier that the guide wanted to show us


leaving the building

leaving the building


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The severed hand is the symbol of Antwerp
Antwerp hand

Antwerp hand


The story goes that a giant was charging a toll to cross his bridge and if you did not pay, he chopped off your hand. A young man got annoyed at all this hand cutting, found the giant, cut off his hand and threw it in the river. The name Antwerp is said to derive from the Dutch “to throw a hand,” when the city was founded a thousand years ago. There are candies and cookies in the shape of this hand.
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I really wanted to go back to the ship. But we were apparently in a pedestrian area and even on the street the taxis have to be called or picked up in a taxi stand - you can't hail them in the street. They took us to a taxi stand and left us but there were no taxis there.
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So after five minutes or so, We went to a cafe (which was not really open but there was a fire there in the fireplace) and asked a lady to call us a cab, which she did.
Street near the cafe

Street near the cafe


When the cab came, he didn't speak much English, but as long as I had got to a warm place where I could sit comfortably, I decided to see if I could get a photo of the Central RR station. I showed him the photos and he was entranced and asked if he could take a photo of them with his phone. He took very seriously getting to the place where the photos were taken and he also tried to show me some of Antwerp
Government building

Government building

Sint Joriskerk (St. George Church) a Roman Catholic church

Sint Joriskerk (St. George Church) a Roman Catholic church

National Bank of Belgium

National Bank of Belgium


IMG_5258.jpgNational bank of belgium

National bank of belgium

Leopold I, who became the first king of Belgium in 1831

Leopold I, who became the first king of Belgium in 1831

Leopold I, from the other side

Leopold I, from the other side


Hoboken electric trolley/tram

Hoboken electric trolley/tram

IMG_5255.jpgtram schedule

tram schedule

signs

signs


He took us to the side of the Central station next to the zoo
Side by the zoo

Side by the zoo


(There was a statue of a man riding a camel there) . The central station was built between 1895 and 1905 by King Leopold with the profits from ivory and rubber in the Congo.
Zoo entrance 2016

Zoo entrance 2016


Zoo side of the Central Station

Zoo side of the Central Station

Central Station tram

Central Station tram


and then he took us around to the side where Daddy had taken the photos and I took pictures there.
Along one side

Along one side


Central RR station

Central RR station


1950 on the left

1950 on the left

Closer and this time 1950 on the right

Closer and this time 1950 on the right


Now to get back to the ship.
War Memorial - Antwerp City Park

War Memorial - Antwerp City Park


Boula theater

Boula theater

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I had the foresight to have the plan of the day which had the address where the ship would dock, but that was a long dock and he kept going to the edge and the ship would not be there.
Hetsteen - youth theater

Hetsteen - youth theater


Tall ship at another place on the docks

Tall ship at another place on the docks


While doing that the fare went up 10 € Eventually it was 33€ and Bob gave him 35 €.
AmaViola - bikes on deck

AmaViola - bikes on deck


And I gave him the prints so he didn't have to take a photo with his cell phone. I do have the originals after all. We were so late back that all that we could have for lunch was the soup.
Soup for lunch

Soup for lunch

Raspberry yoghurt

Raspberry yoghurt

Raspberry and blueberry

Raspberry and blueberry

ice cream

ice cream

Tulips in the lounge

Tulips in the lounge

Looking from the lounge forward

Looking from the lounge forward


The group we were with were to have gone to the cathedral to see the Ruben's paintings there but could not go in because it was Sunday and they were having services, so we really didn't miss much.
IMG_5292.JPGIMG_5281.JPGbarge tug

barge tug

Tug

Tug

Red buoy

Red buoy


storm clouds

storm clouds

storm clouds over the river

storm clouds over the river

burning off gas

burning off gas


Dinner was a Belgian dinner. I had the Belgian endive salad with glazed walnuts and blue cheese, asparagus soup and mahi mahi
Belgium endive and walnut salad

Belgium endive and walnut salad


Wild Rice and Tropical Salsa (in the Mahi Mahi Filet)

Wild Rice and Tropical Salsa (in the Mahi Mahi Filet)


Dessert was a Belgian chocolate buffet. I ate too much chocolate.
Chocolate buffet

Chocolate buffet

Choices from the chocolate buffet

Choices from the chocolate buffet


We went overnight to Terneuzen - actually we started at dinner time and there were waves crashing against the windows in the dining room which is on the lowest deck.

April 25th
I woke up about 4:30 and looked at the bow camera and we were here. We are beside a lock. The captain has decided that the waves and wind in the North Sea make it too dangerous for us to actually go through the lock and go to Middleburg (this is a river boat and not an ocean going vessel after all), so we are staying in Terneuzen all day today. It is still rainy and cold
Lock

Lock


AmaStella across from us

AmaStella across from us


The expeditions today were to Ghent, Bruges and Middleburg, and I decided not to go on any of them. They are all walking tours and I really have not much interest in those towns - it is too much trouble to go to just to have a shopping opportunity. So we had a nice restful day on the ship
Fruit on the buffet

Fruit on the buffet


At lunch, the people who just went to Ghent came back (after a cold and rainy walk) and we had
lentil soup

lentil soup


Caronade Flamade

Caronade Flamade

Table at the end of the dining room and waitress going into the kitchen

Table at the end of the dining room and waitress going into the kitchen


And then Bob went to the ice cream section of the buffet and got ice cream for us for dessert
Bob at the ice cream table

Bob at the ice cream table

Elevator sign on the ship

Elevator sign on the ship


In the afternoon we had tea (sandwiches and cakes). For dinner I had the
foie gras pate

foie gras pate


and then because I didn't want French Onion soup (which is often too salty) or the cream of fennel soup, I had two appetizers - for the second one I got the peach cocktail.
Peach Cocktail - sparkling wine

Peach Cocktail - sparkling wine


Then for the main course I had
Spinach quiche

Spinach quiche

Bob's fish dinner

Bob's fish dinner

Dessert

Dessert


We left for Willemstad. It seemed like they had trouble getting the engines started. But we finally got underway. Bob thought that the injectors were clogged or something.
Red and white sculpture

Red and white sculpture

Yellow and black striped barge

Yellow and black striped barge


Then when I got up to go to the bathroom in the night, I looked at the bow camera picture (which they have in infrared for in the dark), I would have sworn we were on a collision course with another ship or something, but we didn't hit it whatever it was.

Posted by greatgrandmaR 12:03 Archived in Belgium Comments (0)

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