Thursday, December 22, 2011

Brussels at Night

Notre Dame du Finistere
Alex being totally sick, the rest of us abandonned him (rather, he wanted some time sleeping without the rest of us bugging him), and headed off to explore the city at night.

We headed down Rue Neuve just at 8pm.  This I knew, since we got to hear the carillon bells playing in Notre Dame du Finistere. (click on the link to see some really fab photos and read more on its history). Wish I could capture the sound, and not just the sight!
Patria - closeup

Evening light on the cobblestones
Just down one of the side streets from the church, we wandered past the Place des Martyrs, with its sculpture, Patria, memorializing those who died in the 1830 battle for independence.  It is all angels, and lions and chains with the sheen of marble.  There had been a light misting of rain a bit earlier, and the cobblestones mirrored the lights from the buildings around.  

We kept on going, over by the Bourse, which is lit up with moving coloured lights throughout the evening hours.  Here, the stalls of the Christmas Market began to appear along to the streets:  food, drink, crafts, jewellry,... you name it, we saw it!  
From there, we made our way to the Grand Place, to pay homage to the ginourmous christmas tree (which must be 5 stories high).

Hommage was due not only to the tree, but also to the Electrobel music and sound show.Basically, you get 20 or so minutes of highly recognizable pieces of music (ie.snippets from swan lake, ravel's bolero, lizst hungarian rhapsody, etc) with a variety of coloured moving lights being projected on to the buildings in the Grand Place.  Fabulous. 

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