Tag Archives: architecture

Luzern, Schweiz

As a pit stop from overnights in Basel to Verona, we made it to Lucerne for breakfast. We walked along the Reuss river and made friends with the swans. Seriously. I would move to Switzerland just for the animal sitch they’re workin with. I can only imagine that sitch in Austria because Austria is just as lovely and we’re completely obsessed after our Christmas trip. Secret little country doesn’t want the outsiders to know how great it is.. J and I’s conversation on the way through Austria when we forgot how much we adored the country..

‘Hi guys – welcome back! We’re glad to have you. Hope you enjoy being here, really we do. Have a look around at our home..you can tell people about it if you want, or not, either way we’re just chillin.’ – Austria

This is also the method with which J re-teaches me all of the European history that I probably learned in school, but forgot it like a normal person. He personifies leaders and countries and makes them into characters that I’ll remember and he is gonna be the greatest dad. If it doesn’t confuse the heck out of them..

Where were we? Oh yeah, Schweis. Which is the Swiss German, or maybe just German?, way to say it in the city and I like the local language of cities to shine…even if I’m butchering the pronunciation with my Southern-trying-really-hard-not-to-sound-too-Southern American accent. Overly expressive facial expressions and all.

Lucerne.

They’ve got this famous bridge, Kapellbrücke. That thing is a work of art, all 669 ft of it. It cuts through the Reuss and was originally built in 1333, making it the oldest covered bridge in Europe. Except for the restoration that was needed in 1993  (allegedly) caused by a cigarette. Do you know I now feel dirtier for even having that word on our blog. Yuck. Get that crap under control people. Please and thank you. Anyway, that bridge is a beaut with its remainders (and sadly, restorations) of 17th century paintings throughout Lucerne’s history.

It was all so picturesque. Take a gander..

Lucerne, Switzerland Lucerne, Switzerland Lucerne, Switzerland Lucerne, Switzerland IMG_1487Lucerne, Switzerland Lucerne, Switzerland Lucerne, SwitzerlandLucerne, Switzerland Lucerne, SwitzerlandWe called this one Grace.

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Filed under Switzerland

JulyFest

Rock Werchter, BelgiumAdriatic Sea glass
Verona, ItalyDuomo | Milan, Italy
Kamenjak, Premanthura | Pula, CroatiaCandelabra Collection
Nuremberg, GermanyRock Werchter, Belgium
Fourth of July | Montgomery FestRock Werchter, Belgium

rockin’ the Werchter // Adriatic Sea glass // intoxicating hues // duomo is a cathedral. hashtag Italian lessons // turquoise // candelabra collection  // say ‘cheese’, Nuremberg // dancin’ hipster feet //4 July, 2013 // peace out!

instafotos.

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And the town cheered with excitement

Ghent, Belgium via MontgomeryFest

Because we were one for three. Three times the mister and I have tried to hit up a river cruise in the country of Belgium. That first time was kinda our fault..the forecast said it was pretty out, or maybe we didn’t check the weather? Who can even remember at this point, it was like 39 days ago or something. We got in the car and drove straight up to Ghent and parked our car  and walked outside and let it pour down on us for like eight seconds before we decided – nope.. Okay, maybe it was a light rain, but it was cold and being on the water sounded little fun. Bummer. So, we walked back inside and bought some watercolor paint in the parking garage slash shopping mall and got back in our car and drove straight back down to Brussels where I can’t remember if it was raining or not, but that’s beside the point.  That second time was with the ladies in Bruges and the weather was a tiny bit chilly, but not a rain cloud in sight and J and I’s eyes lit up when we walked over a canal by chance and saw a guided tour float by under our bridge.  Maybe?! Nope. Nanan nixed that idea up and real quick since her layer of thermals wasn’t warm enough. On land we stayed. Such is the life of a host.

But! Last Saturday, the stars aligned and there was sunshine and it was just the two of us and we saw our chance.

And the town of Ghent was so excited for us that they all came out to welcome us and, well okay, not totally just for that, but there were many a Belgian and non-Belgian alike amongst those cobblestone streets. I love when you get close to the center of a city and, whether it’s official or not, the cars turn away and all there are are people walking, bicycling, meandering, enjoying the leisurely life along the streets…in the masses (sooo many people here!). Actually, I take that back. Leisurely and bicycles don’t go together in these parts. It’s a serious, fast-paced agenda that bicycling in Northern Europe. We boarded our wooden yacht and sat back watching boats bump into each other and then waving ‘pardon’ or whatever the Dutch word is (sorry Dutch friends)…are they seriously smiling?! So many people. We laughed at the signs on every seat saying tipping was customary in 4 different languages guaranteeing you couldn’t miss it because it’s funny that tipping is not customary in Europe but tipping IS customary on tourist rides. The adventure began and we listened to the tour in English, French, Dutch and maybe there was another one, but my ears only tuned in when they heard english or a french term that they didn’t use during the English translation (what the heck.). Kinda rad how the brain does that, but can’t remember the grammar rules for capitalizing languages (help?) to save my life. Capitalization for all!

Gent, BelgiumPhoto Jun 08, 4 55 08 PM
Ghent, Belgium via MontgomeryFestGhent, Belgium via MontgomeryFest
Ghent, Belgium Photo Jun 08, 5 45 45 PMGhent, Belgium

You see, the thing about floating under a willow tree is that it’s lovely. 

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Filed under // Day Trips, Belgium

Giardino di Boboli

We’re squeezing in one last part about our trip to Tuscany. Along the edge of Florence lies The Boboli Gardens. It’s 11 acres of peace away from the bustle of the city, lush greenery (my shoes came off immediately), and views like you wouldn’t believe. The size of it left us meandering for hours. The gardens are the backyard to the Palazzo Pitti – the lavish palace in which only the Medici family could justify living. 

Florence, Italy via MontgomeryFest
Boboli Gardens in Florence, Italy via MontgomeryFest Boboli Gardens in Florence, Italy via MontgomeryFestBoboli Gardens in Florence, Italy via MontgomeryFestphoto-apr-20-1-44-34-pm photo-apr-20-1-47-16-pm1Boboli Gardens in Florence, Italy via MontgomeryFestBoboli Gardens in Florence, Italy via MontgomeryFestimg_0982-001 img_1015
Boboli Gardens in Florence, Italy via MontgomeryFest

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Touristy Things

IMG_0857

So, we’re all in agreeance that, like the birds, we’ll be flying South for the next winter? fer sher. But! in the midst of all of this 5 degree shiz, the good Lord has blessed us with some glorious sunshine! And, whoa baby is it appreciated! Guys. I got a neck draft. That’s when it’s decidedly too dang cold. A neck draft? I can’t move and I can’t sleep unless I’m utterly exhausted, which kinda works out that I don’t have a schedule right now, but my poor hubby who can’t do anything about it but just hear me squirm all night. Thankfully, pharmacies over here are more like going to the doc back in the states, so first thing this a.m., I made some calls to get some kinda bengay-type-stuff/miracle-in-a-tube from the quarter English pharm so that I could move my neck to write this post. Super productive Monday. Wait. Where were we? Oh, yeah, there’s sun. Look^!!

Since that was completely unnecessary, I’m gonna throw in some trivia about the Atomium in Brussels because. Yeah.

  • The iconic building was built for the 1958 Brussels World’s Fair.
  •  It forms the shape an iron crystal magnified 165 billion times.
  • CNN named it Europe’s most bizarre building.
  • Belgium The guy who came up with the Atomium (better?) tried to copyright photos of the structure. They asked people to send in their photos and Photoshopped the Atomium out of them. Through the years, people have tried to argue that this is absurd (because, obviously). As it stands today, there is an exemption for private individuals to put photos in their scrapbooks..but only until 1 January 2076.
  • Reality TV fans: It was the tenth pit stop in The Amazing Race 19.
  • Music: Pink Floyd’s ‘Paint Box’ 1968 music video is set in Brussels, where you can see the Atomium in the background.
  • Videogamers: It is a placeable scenery object in the game RollerCoaster Tycoon 2.

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Filed under // Day Trips, Belgium

A Walk in Brussels

So, as winter approaches we find the days getting shorter and colder. The leaves have all changed colors and fallen, and we’ve had our first snow of the year this past weekend. It all makes us think back just a few weeks when we had blue skies and we could take a walk through the city in a light sweater. We had started out from our apartment to see the Grand Place and were pleasantly surprised at what we found along the way.

Eglise Saint-Jacques-sur-Coudenberg, Brussels, Belgium

Our first discovery was the Place Royale and the Eglise Saint-Jacques-sur-Coudenberg. The Church dominates the cobblestone square, and the steps was the site that the first King of the Belgians took his oath.. Probably since its right around the corner from the palace. Makes everyone come to him, man, being a king must be nice. There’s also a pretty nice view of the Hôtel de Ville with the Basilique Nationale du Sacré-Cœur in the background.

Hotel de Ville, Brussels, BelgiumEglise Saint-Jacques-sur-Coudenberg, Brussels, BelgiumBrussels, BelgiumBrussels, BelgiumBrussels, Belgium
We finally catch a close-up glimpse of the Hôtel de Ville as we round a corner and make our way down a tiny narrow street to land on the Grand Place. They somehow packed a bunch of different architectural styles onto this public square and made it into one of Europe’s most popular, and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

IMG_0245Grand Place, Brussels, BelgiumGrand Place, Brussels, BelgiumGrand Place, Brussels, BelgiumGrand Place, Brussels, BelgiumGrand Place, Brussels, BelgiumGrand Place, Brussels, BelgiumGrand Place, Brussels, BelgiumGrand Place, Brussels, Belgium
And on our way home we find Tintin, Snowy and Captain Haddock… Great walk.

Tintin art in Brussels, Belgium

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