Sunday, June 13, 2010


I went to Brussels yesterday! I saw/did a lot of the stereotypical touristy things to do Belgium. Throughout the day, I of course got belgian chocolate, fries (with spicy samurai and pili pili sauce), a waffel, and a beer - all delicious.

I just sort of wandered around the city with a map all day. I went to the Grote Markt (the city center), and saw Manneken Pis (the little statue of the boy peeing into a fountain) nearby. He was wearing a kilt yesterday. I went to The Royal Museum of Fine Arts of Belgium and saw the Rene Margritte exhibit. He was a surrealist, which is the sort of art that I like, so I enjoyed it even though I don't know anything about art. Before I left, I decided to hop on the metro and go see the Atomium. Unfortunately, I didn't know that it closed at 6, so I didn't get to go inside. Apparently, you can get a tour of all the "atoms," with exhibits in each one and a restraunt in the top. So I just took some pictures from up close. Being a materials scientist, all I could think about at the time was what crystal lattice it was (bcc - 8 nearest neighbors). I read more about it later: it was built in 1958 and represents the unit cell of an iron crystal magnefied 165 billion times. I'll have to go back sometime so I can actually take the tour, I'm sure there is a great view from the top!

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