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  • An early evening vibe in Antwerpen. Such a romantic little alley 😍
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Can you see the year on that banner? Yup, 1565! This is the oldest bar in the city. Since the building was erected, it has always served as an inn/bar (don’t get hung up by the bar term. It’s a proper place to drink and/or have a meal by yourself, with friends or family). Many Flemmish writers and poets have met up inside this gorgeous establishment, to chat and feel inspired. Good food, beer 🍺, company and old classy vibe, what more can one ask for, right?
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I was focusing on shooting a different corner when I saw the banner. 1565 got me excited 😬 I wasn’t sure if I even got anything good but after some editing in Lightroom and Googling, quite pleased with the results. You can swipe left to see the SOOC (straight out of camera) image.
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I hope you don’t mind me posting photos from different times of the day. I am trying some new edits, testing out what my new camera can do (bought a Lumix G81 — or G85 in the US) and to be challenged by the different lighting conditions. My old dSLR is a Nikon D300. I love it but being an old being, it’s not the best in super high ISO settings 😜 I love golden hours but realistically, with kids, husband and even dogs in tow, I never know when we’ll be in a certain place. Or, we may be at the right place and time and the kids are hungry 😜 I gotta be prepared 😊
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Hope your day is going well! One more day until the weekend 💥
  • Cause I love this corner so much... different time, different light, different folks.
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Have you ever visited a place and it felt so good that you started looking at cost of living and jobs in/around that area? If you have experienced this, did you make the move?
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Granada, Spain, did this to me (gorgeous centre, sun and sangria 😜) and now Gent!
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Yes, I still would love to move back to England to but Gent really got me! It felt like a bigger (and maybe better in terms of after uni/work activities) version of Cambridge.
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Maybe after hubby’s contract ends here, we’ll give Belgium a go. He LOVES Belgium beer and he can continue keeping the WW2 history alive, just like when he was in England.
  • A little moody and autumn-ish vibe.
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Being an Instagrammer, I often have to give myself a little nudge. A nudge to remind myself that life isn’t always beautiful and controlled. That while I want to capture the beauty, often the what it is, is as important.
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We often focus too much on the end result. The likes on an image, an A on an exam, an obedient child, the bonus pay, etc. And forget that the journey is as important, if not more so, than the end result.
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The lessons, the connections, the people we meet and get to know along the way, and our growth as a human being are the things to hold on to.
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I know, got a bit deep. It’s that kind of day ✨
  • Autumns like this. When it’s in the 20s/70s in the early evenings.
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While I am enjoying the weather, I am slightly concerned also with the health of our gorgeous earth. .
Yesterday’s post on the antique dealer who saved a street that was going to be demolished due to it being run down got me thinking... one person could that. If he could, I can make a difference too.
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In our everyday lives we recycle, hang clothes out to dry, often eat what’s in season and use more public transport or biking or walking than driving own car. I know it’s not much but I know it helps.
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What do you try to do to help keep our world beautiful?
  • A peaceful hidden gem in the centre of busy Antwerpen city centre.
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The last medieval street in Antwerpen that dates back to the late 16th century, 1591 to be exact.
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I read that there used to be a few  alleys like this in the centre but many have been torn down and rebuilt in the 20th century. Most likely because it used to be where the poorest in the city lived. Families were cramped into small living spaces, sanitary was poor and one water pump for the whole alley (maybe that one in the left corner).
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This particular alleyway as where the shoemakers used to live and they were also in charge of sounding the alarm bell of the cathedral.
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Very glad that an antique dealer bought a home in this alley in the 60s and restored the whole area. If not, it would have been demolished also.
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I have about 900 photos of Belgium (Brugge, Gent, Antwerpen, Durbuy, and La Roche). I may pretend to be living in Belgium between now and who knows 🙈
  • Gorgeous corner of Brugge at sunset. After all the boats have been put away and the sounds you hear were gatherings of people around good food and drinks.
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During the medieval time, Brugge was the centre of commercial activities. In the 15th century, Brugge was the centre of the Flemish Primitives (work of artists active in the Burgundian and Habsburg Netherlands during the 15th- and 16th). Now, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a favourite of many.
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Question for you: what kind of wanderer are you? One that hits all the main sites, one that likes to explore the hidden gems, one who rather eat her way around, or a bit of above?
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For me, I love just wandering around and trying out the local specialities.
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Wishing you a wonderful weekend ❤️❤️
  • Tuesday...
Ellie: on my way to Brussels
Me: so near but far away!
E: I have a double room, wanna join?
Me: ooooooh...
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A few text messages with hubby and the answer was YES!!
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Spent yesterday in Gent and today in Brugge. Tomorrow, who knows... Laughing, chatting, and as always, making sure @dy_ellie Doesn’t get hit by a car, bike or in Gent, trams 😂😂
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Loving Gent! Such a charming centre, awesome public transport, it’s very English friendly, the food and drinks scenes are 👌, it feels very safe and it is amazingly clean! Well impressed with the city’s cleaning crews!!
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Now, can you spot the 🐕?
  • how is the weather there? It’s been like summer here! Crazy!!
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Durbuy’s evening vibe. I am telling you, this place is romantic!
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Still in Belgium, but further up north. Photos to come!
  • I think about ditching clothing each time we come back from a holiday, no matter how long the holiday was. Our laundry 👗👕👖 pile right now 😱😱
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And if ever experience American washer and dryers AND also Europe, you’ll understand my dilemma. The Europe machines are half the size of the US, or maybe smaller. The amount of time it takes to dry can range from one to two hours. On a sunny day, especially summer, it’s no big deal. Line dry and voila, 30min max. Eco friendly AND fast. On a wet and/or cloudy day... a queue at Disney World during peak time may be faster in comparison to doing a load of laundry 😂😂
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Durbuy, Belgium, before the sun goes down is so romantic!
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Aren’t the greeneries 🍃🍂🍃🍂 so so charming?.

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