August 16, 2006

Brussels has the biggest boules

A couple of weeks ago I was in Brussels, Belgium and visited the completely refurbished Atomium. It was the landmark of Brussels' 1958 World Fair. Incidentally that was the last time I had seen it up close. Oops!

Impressive, to say the least.
Nine boules, 59 ft in diameter each, symbolising a crystal molecule of metal by the scale of its atoms, magnified 165 billion times.

Numerous celebrities were there in 1958, such as Liz Taylor.
Suddenly I saw what looked like a petanque video. Nope: old footage of one of the creators showing the clay model balls...

The tubes connecting the boules have eerie, kind of "Star Wars" lighting.
Next door is "Old Brussels", also a remnant of the '58 Expo, a vibrant collection of bars and restaurants. Needless to say, we sat there for a good while to recover from the walk. Also saw that Chez Léon, they now serve mussels with ... pastis?? Thanks but no, thanks. I'd rather have the pastis first, and Belgian beer with the mussels!

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