Flying to anywhere overseas can be an okay experience or a God-awful experience…unless maybe you’re in first class where life is always good. Our flight to Munich, where we had a layover on our way to Brussels, was somewhere approaching the awful range.
First, we were in the middle row on an overnight flight. I can’t sleep unless I’m against the window, so I had pretty much resolved to watching movies the entire flight (because Lufthansa, the German airline we used is awesome like that).
Side note: I posted on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter a photo of the TV screen in the back of the airline seat with the words “Wilkommen” (welcome) on the screen and one of my Facebook page followers guessed that I was on a Lufthansa flight. So impressed she knew that! Who says us Southern girls (she was from NC) aren’t cultured?
So back to the flight…the inconvenience of the seats and awesomeness of the movies kind of cancel each other out so that has nothing to do with the flight being awful. What made it awful was that there was a gentleman directly behind me who snored, LOUDLY, the entire flight.
I’m not talking about your general snoring that a lot of people do while sleeping. I’m talking chair rattling, scary loud snoring. Lovely.
We named him Snore Bear.
We were deliriously sleepy at this point and his snoring was so awful, it was borderline comical. If you can’t join him (sleeping), you might as well laugh at him…or the situation (that sounds nicer).
We missed our connection in Munich, which turned out to be a blessing in disguise because my checked bag also missed it. Not that we didn’t try out darn-dest to catch that flight. We are the people who sprint like we’re on fire if there is any chance of catching our flight.
Catching the next flight didn’t put us that far behind schedule, but we both took full advantage of our first time in Germany (even though airports never really count) by ordering a Heferweizen at 10 am in the morning. In our defense it was about 4 am EST. Yeah…that didn’t help make my case, did it?
We finally arrived to Brussels about noon and by the time we got my bag and got a taxi to our hotel, we were beat. I actually slept the entire cab ride so my first glimpse of Brussels was through the back of my eyelids.
We both slept about four hours and Brad did some work, while I published a blog post. I grew a little restless waiting around so I ventured down to the hotel bar and had a glass of Syrah, while playing with my phone.
I did some research on dinner for the evening, but in the end asked our concierge’s opinion. Unfortunately she was unable to get through to the restaurant to get us a reservation and when we showed up, they were completely full.
We decided to wing it and while walking around looking for a restaurant we stumbled upon called Ma Folle de Soeur, translated means My Crazy Sister. This was one of the restaurants I had already considered for dinner, so it was a no brainer.
As soon as we were seated, I became engrossed in the hand-written menu, which was very difficult to read 1) because it was entirely in French and 2) because it was entirely in cursive.
Now, I can read a little French, especially when it’s on a menu (I know just enough French to never go hungry) and I can read cursive because I almost exclusively write in cursive myself. But when you put these two things together, I’m all of a sudden illiterate. I could make out about 25% of the menu (as could Brad) so we went with words we recognized. He ordered duck (canard) and I ordered risotto that I was 72.4% sure contained shrimp (crevette).
But before ordering, I attempted to read the suggestions written on the blackboard above us. That was even more difficult than menu in the dimly lit restaurant.
We also ordered a selection of tapas because we felt like this appetizer would give us a lot of the best choices off the menu, selected by the chef. This was my very favorite part of the meal.
The appetizer included:
- Antipasta: prosciutto and some other dried meats
- Goat cheese croquettes with whipped avocado for spreading
- Crackers and bread
- Olives and feta
- Two little duck legs
- Grilled zucchini and eggplant
The duck legs were perfect, but I also really loved the babaganoush. Everything (except of course the olives, which I won’t touch) was delicious, fresh, and a wonderful assortment of flavors.
Brad’s duck looked beautiful but he said it was quite dry so he was a pretty disappointed. In my very limited experience ordering duck, I feel like it’s often very hit or miss so I shy away from ordering this dish now.
However, my risotto was absolutely delicious. The risotto must have been made with a different type of rice than arborio because the texture was different — not as creamy and larger grain. It did indeed have shrimp, as well as parmesan cheese and some herbs. If I wasn’t so full after after eating about 3/4 of it, I would have had a very clean plate.
After dinner, we decided to return to our hotel room and go to bed. Our first day in Brussels was a little short-lived but we were so exhausted we couldn’t think of anything else but sleep.
However, here’s a sneak peek at where we spent most of the next day, in the Grand Place in Brussels…