Thursday, June 10, 2010

More Brugge

Brugge was full of these lovely little views, ones that would surprise you as you looked down a canal or an alleyway.  Centuries-old houses and canals, still lived in, still used. Living in the United States, we don't really have a good perspective on "old."  Here, something is old if it is 100 years old, if it was here during the Civil War, or the Revolutionary War. Brugge was old during the Revolutionary War; its heyday was long gone.

This brightly colored dock is where we caught a boat for a canal tour, but that will have to wait until tomorrow. Next up for us is the brewery tour.

On Monday, after we finished our bike ride, we took a tour of the Halve Maan (half moon) Brewery. On the tour you get to see the workings of the old parts of the brewery, most of which are only used for tours these days.  Lots of narrow stairs and dusty bottles.

But the view from the roof of the brewery was pretty good - that church in the distance is where the Michaelangelo Madonna lives. 

Each of these large holding tanks had to be cleaned at the end of each aging cycle - by hand. The person who was sent inside was instructed to whistle continuously while he was in there - if he stopped, the workers outside the tank would know that he had been overcome by fumes and would then pull him out.

At the end of the tour, everyone was given a glass of beer to enjoy in the cafe. Benjamin enjoyed it. I still haven't come around to beer - lambic (fruity beer) is OK, and I really like cider, but not so much the beer. But it was fairly good, for being beer. *smile*

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