23.10.12

Nieuwpoort, Belgium

A storm rolling in over Nieuwpoort, Belgium.

Chris and I have been living in Roeselare, Belgium for 7 weeks now, and I still feel scattered and unsettled. There is so much to explore and friends to be made and jobs to be found. The weather is flighty and unpredictable, so discovering my new home on two wheels can sometimes leave me looking like a drowned rat. I am not quite sure how people still manage to look presentable riding a bike around town in the rain?! Maybe I just need to invest in a good rain coat. The saying around here goes something like this: "If you don't like the weather, wait a few minutes because it will surely change; and if you like the weather, well, sorry to say that after a few minutes your new found appreciation for the weather will change too." I have to laugh because I feel like I am back in Portland, Oregon. The climate here is so similar to the Pacific Northwest. I guess I have just been living in Kentucky and Serbia too long to appreciate sporadic rain showers. It will grow on me . . . I hope!

One of the great things about our new home is the number of visitors that we have had in the past 7 weeks. Chris and I have had an excuse to get out and explore a little more since we are entertaining visitors most weekends that we stay in town! One of my college friends, Ben, is an expat living in Rome, and we invited him to hop on over to Belgium for a long weekend. Of course, the three of us explored Brugge, but on Sunday, we decided to drive 30 minutes to the city of 
Nieuwpoort on the North Sea. 

Nieuwpoort is a small, coastal town with two long piers and endless miles of sandy shore. The water front is crammed with one high-rise apartment after another. Apparently, this is the place to be in the summer, so a lot of Belgium families have summer apartments with an ocean view. On pleasant afternoons in the Autumn months, families come to stroll along the boardwalk and let their dogs run freely on the beach. 

One of my favorite things about Nieuwpoort is the enormous, gold statue of a man riding a turtle. I looked the statue up and found that is is called "Searching for Utopia." In 2003, the city council voted to buy "Searching for Utopia" after it was displayed at a modern art show. The piece was created by Jan Fabre and it weighs 5500 kg. (12,125 pounds)! Anyway, the statue is in the middle of the boardwalk and it just cracks me up! You'll see a picture of it below. 

Enjoy a few pictures from our little trip to Nieuwpoort. Note that the weather was ominous when we arrived and sunny towards the end of the day. Fitting for Belgium, I suppose!



"Searching for Utopia" - Ben was upset that his seat was taken! 

A view from the pier in Nieuwpoort, Belgium