Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Random Musings

This is definitely going to be a tough week to keep up with.  I've got my first really big deadline coming up and I got back to my room around 3am... I almost skipped out but pushed through the urge.  I'm going to answer a few related questions I've gotten about my trip here.  These are usually related to my day to day life and are somewhat different than the US so they deserved a post.

Homeless People? Whats the deal with them?

I may have mentioned in a previous post (probably the one about the Metro) that I'm actually pretty safely guarded against pan handling.  I have a very easy time completely ignoring people when I have no idea what they're saying.  In NYC there are plenty of times that pan handlers are able to convince you they're speaking normal human language when they are in fact speaking gibberish... French gibberish doesn't get the same message across allowing me to escape unscathed and without paying off the homeless.  They are very strategic in Belgium though.  Women make sure to hold their children (who could very well be in their teens, and also look healthy) to convince people to donate money to them.  Others stand at the exit to the escalator, which is very devious because its like a yuppie pez dispenser.  I've also seen a very different breed of pan-handler/musician here:  the grinder.  Seriously, they've got an accordion / weird music box thing and someone dances in front of it.  They move around to different store fronts and Metro stops.  Its fun, but I still have no care to give them money.  Finally there is the pick-pocket.  Apparently Belgium has one of the largest populations of pick-pockets in Europe.  There is a big produce market on Sundays at one of the large train stations and I've been told that I should basically staple things to myself before going so they don't get lifted.

Well, that's one question answered for the night.  If I get home a little earlier I'll try to lay down a plan for my trip this weekend.  I also have some Frites based text to put down "on paper," and I'm not sure how long that'll take so we shall see what goes up tomorrow night.  I'm also happy to blog that even though I got back super late I still kept up with my workout for the day.  Honestly, doing the push ups and sit ups was what gave me enough energy to push through this post.

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