February 1, 2012

Belgium: 1 point

Keiki being from Belgium and Belgium being a small and relatively unknown country, foreigners sometimes ask us: “So, what is Belgium like?”. We understand it’s a polite way to start a conversation, still I wonder if people aren’t just lazy. I mean, there is Wikipedia and, since one year or so, Belgium has been officially totally street-viewified…

OK, I know some people are really busy and won’t spend too much time searching the Net for info about a little country with seemingly nothing interesting apart from keiki and a few other things like chocolate and beer. So, to help you out, dear busy foreigner friends, I have been doing some random Streetview screenshots in the most renowned places of Belgium. I hope it will give you a clearer idea of “what Belgium is like”.

Here are the results (pictures are from Streetview, comments are taken from Wikipedia):
"Belgium's two largest regions are the Dutch-speaking region of Flanders in the north and the French-speaking southern region of Wallonia. The second half of the 20th century was marked by the rise of non-violent conflicts between the Flemish and the Francophones fuelled by cultural differences on the one hand and an asymmetrical economic evolution of Flanders and Wallonia on the other hand."

Flanders (somewhere between a potato field and a motorway)

Wallonia (somewhere between a motorway and a potato field)

The five main belgian cities (by population size) are:

Brussels: the official founding of Brussels is usually situated around 979. On average (based on measurements the last 100 years), there are approximately 200 days of rain per year.

Antwerp: historical Antwerp had its origins in a Gallo-Roman vicus civilization.

Liège: the first references to Liège are from 558, when it was known as Vicus Leudicus.

Ghent: archaeological evidence shows human presence in the region of the confluence of Scheldt and Lys going back as far as the Stone Age and the Iron Age.

Charleroi: the history of the city of Charleroi starts in 1666, so named in honour of King Charles II.
So, come visit us...