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La Belgique

After the sheep-coal mines-furnaces-ron miles weekend, we headed to Brussels, our first official destination out of Britain. We stayed at Hostel Bruegul, which was quite comfortable, but we were hardly there except to maybe sleep.

First day in Brussels, we visited the very pretty town of Bruges and had the entire day to ourselves. We had rented bikes to make things more fun. Bruges is a cosy little tourist town with beautiful architecture and horse-driven cnhariots, small little shops (with wafffles!) everywhere and numerous grand squares where time simply stops. Many of use relaxed in Bar 2b till it was finally time to leave, and some of us biked on bike trails that ran on the borders of the city.

Second day in Bruges – We went for the European Commission information session, and learnt about the working of the European Union and its goals for the future. After that, we were free to explore Brussels and in the evening most of us watched Inception, the movie that I’ve heard so much about and can’t wait to watch.

Third day in Bruges – We had a tour of the city of Ypres, a place that was involved in two world wars. Our guide was a retired British military officer now living in Belgium, but he was really passionate about the dynamics of the wars and how it had affected the town of Ypres. We visited a British cemetary, also the place where John McCrae wrote ‘In Flanders Fields’, and the German cemetary, which existed after Germany lost but refused to take back its dead. We also visited the war museum, that had preserved trenches and many souveniers from the wars (and many cats). It was an interesting day and made me write something about soldiers.

Adventure

They left home in the spirit of adventure,
Mere boys, looking for a grander feeling,
Than simple boyish games can lend.

They left with a sparkling patriotic pride,
Brighter than the hearts of most men,
Flush with dreams of women and medals.

They left in hoards and masses,
In trucks and on foot.
Singing.

In the rain of shells, and puddles of dirt,
Adventures were had.

Shrewsbury

Our weekend long trip to Shrewsbury came to an end on Tuesday morning at 11 am. Due to no internet in Shrewsbury I was unable to update the blog. However, I had prepared a slide show about what we did in Shrewsbury with Captions telling the story.

Day 1: Cadbury World

Day 2: Pottery Museum

Day 3: Iron Bridge Museum, Ron Miles tour, Clay Pipe Museum and Black Country Museum

Day 4: Quarry Bank Textile Mill and Old Trafford! (No Rooney unfortunately)

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NewMarket Horse Betting!

As Austin said: “This will be the last time that an authority figure will give us money and ask us to gamble”. Yes, we gambled on horses. Some of us won (go Music Show!) others lost or broke even! But it wasn’t about the money, it was more about the experience. To see ladies in their fancy hats and learn about ‘love shaft’. I found it interesting that horses start mating one day after valentine’s day. I’ll let the photos tell the rest of the story:

Christie’s Auction

Dressed in our best, we went to Christie’s Auction house to see auction for some expensive paintings. There was a combination of online, telephone and present bidders who bid upto 10,000 pounds on some paintings (atleast the ones we were present for). Right after that, we toured the gallery of paintings and some silverware and getting to learn all about absentee bid, christie’s clientele and their annual profits. The rest of the day was leisure day in london. While some people went to tower of london and st. paul’s catherdral, some of us visited non-traditional markets such as Camden.

Punting

Since weather was nice, Lauren decided to take us for punting. I don’t know about other boats but ours had some epic fun moments. Austin, Tom and Wookie punted and guided us through a tunnel after crashing into every possible boat. Poor Gnagna kept getting hit into the walls with this one time a boat almost hitting her in the stomach. Yuvika just splashed everyone with water and Tom made it all the more pleasant with his beautiful singing voice.

This deserves a special mention: Tim Beasley fell into the water. Twice. I hope you are alright (and had fun?)

Wimbledon!

It was too exciting to be put in words. A gist of it:

Cambridge, Platform 9 ¾, Wimbledon, 17 people without tents, Indian Food, soccer, angry birds, getting ice’d, kings, cold shivering night, 4 o’clock wake-up call, Tom (the brit kid), long long bathroom lines, 2 hours wait in the line, Court No. 1, Maria Sharapova and back to Cambridge.

Thursday Night at Girton

Nothing beats eating cold canned soup with vinger flavored Walkers on a Thursday night. Unfortunately, second floor on Girton is devoid of any utensils, a microwave and a properly working stove at late hours of night. After trying every possible kitchen on 1st and 2nd floors, in desperation, I almost poured my soup in the electric kettle (don’t worry I didn’t).  Tomorrow most of us are going to watch Wimbledon; watch being the keyword. It involves a night of camping out, waiting forever in the line and then (hopefully) getting a spot in center court! Evan is looking into hostels and Captain a.k.a David is working through the travel plans! Michael, Wookie and Austin left for Scotland today. The rest of the ‘gang’ is headed out to watch Wimbledon!