For my last day in Belgium maybe it was logic to go back to Brussels and get to know the city better. The truth is that my decision was to stay in Leuven.
Leuven is a small university city, and besides the way from the trainstation to Sander’s I hadn’t seen a thing. So, against the logic, I wanted to know the city, feel it. Sander and his girlfriend showed me in the map Daan gave which were the nice places to visit. It was exams time, so basically the city would be all mine (it’s not like that, but there’s just a few people on the streets).
Freezing again and waiting for Sander to get me a free entrance at the library, I went to a bar to get a warm coffee. In Portugal one pays 0.60€ for a coffee, in Belgium is from 2.50 to 3.50, but I couldn’t care. There was already people drinking beer at 10h30 and having breakfasts that looked like lunch to me. The Bibliotheektoren is an amazing building, big and high, with an Harry Potter style in the interior. It has been burnt completely once, and again a second time. American universities helped rebuilding it again, in all its majesty.
After that I went to the city hall. It’s probably the pretiest one I’ve ever seen, the building is quite thin and long, and it’s full of small statues. The whole square is nice with a big church, cafes and people.
The highest point of this day was the Kruid Tuin, which is the bothanic garden of Leuven. Because I’ve been working with seeds, my knowledge on flowers is a thiny little bit bigger now, and I’m in love with this world. Get the chance to see a garden like this, even if small, know different species, find flowers I didn’t know that existed. I was very excited about it and I was walking around, taking pictures and reading everything for two hours. What most surprised me was a red poppy bigges than the size of my hand.
I went home for lunch, and Sander walked with me to the trainstation. He’s all about quick goodbyes, and I’m pretty sure we’ll end up seeing each other again. At the airport I was surprised and confused with the proccess the’ve created after the terrorist attacks, and when a military came with a dog to check all the bags I was thinking if it really makes me feel safer or not. I end up talking in french with a portuguese couple, until I took my book out of the bag and the woman asked if I was portuguese.
This was the first time I travelled alone after a while, and it was good to feel I’ve grown up in the last years. It’s easier for me to be alone with myself, to face stress situations, to look for answers or just talk to people when I need it. It’s nice to have time for ourselves, listen to us, stop talking and feel what we are in a more deep way. Of course, I didn’t get any answers from this trip. But I’m closer to me everyday, and I could feel it during this 5 days. It was also the time I travelled with less money: I spent 113€ for 5 days, with everything. That can be a big challenge, but this trip wasn’t planned, so if I wanted to survive the rest of the month… One’s gotta do, what one’s gotta do.