Monday, January 1, 2007

Commentary - Trains in Belgium

Meeting train people is, well not always as easy as meeting girls. . .

That's cheating, I know, but where do you find the train guys around town. Sure, they say, join a club. Clubs have their own issues, doesn't make no mind if it is a car club or a train club or a biker club, each has their own set of issues. Besides, the club scene
is a commitment of time. But even worse, it is a commitment of a schedule. And, oh, do I hate schedules!

I have a friend I do Bible study with every Saturday morning, least I get my Belgian waffle! Oh, and speaking of waffles, I am in Brussels right this minute and U think I could find a waffle here? Nope! Not one, I got close last night, we went to this neat little restaurant near the office. A place called the Cook & Book. It is a restaurant and book store combined.

Down stairs, books for adults, noo, not that kind, but the intellectual types, about travel and cooking and other stuff. They have an old airstream trailer in one room, the little one about 12' long. Polished like grandma's silver it is.

Upstairs, this is where it got really neat, the floor is raised like an old computer room floor with huge, thick glass tiles about an inch or so thick. The tiles must be 4' x 6' of course they measure in meters over hear but you and I know how big 4' x 6' really is. So big deal, Joe Daddy, where are the trains, what are you talking about! Patience! UNDER the glass, all the way around the room is a huge Marklin layout! It is built on something like old Astroturf, but it has tracks running everywhere and buttons about every 8 feet along the side of the frame on the floor. Press the button and the train takes off! My grandson Brandon would go nuts, course he would drool all over the glass as he laid there trying to get there. Stefan, the man I was with had told
his wife and 7 year old daughter that their visitor from the US loves trains. It was their daughter Colynn who suggested Dad take Joe Daddy to the Cook & Book! Of course I did not have my camera, not sure it would have done much good, but I can tell you it was a neat idea.

Back to the waffle, decided to forgo supper and only have a desert. There it was, Belgian waffles with fruit and ice cream! Oh, we discontinued that last month. Grrrrr. . .

I finally bought a 7-11 plastic wrap waffle this afternoon just so I could say I had one in Brussels.

Oh, should we be thankful we don't have the prices over hear, I'll never complain about the price for a coke in Manhattan again. 6 bucks a can in my hotel! Everything is outrageously high priced. Some of it of course is that I am trapped in the business man's circuit where escape even to something like a 7-11 is almost impossible. I did find a golden arches in the building next door. Hustled over there only to find it was the Belgium headquarters for Mickey D's, no restaurant at all!

Ok, back to meeting train people. Maybe I'll write about that later, b
ack to Brussels!

This is the view right out my overpriced hotel room window. The trains run all day and three things stand out as impressive.

  • They are brightly painted.
  • They are clean, spick and span and it has been raining all week!
  • They are quiet!
So, how to meet train people in your area? So far, I have met some very nice people right here on TrainBoard. Reach out, use the private message system, I still have to close the loop on one man I have reached out to here. It is how I got the honor of meeting John Widmar, which reminds me, I got to get back over and finish that write up on his incredible workmanship.

Copyright 2006

No comments: