787-788: Going, Going, Gent

787 – Monday 24th July 2017:  Ieper and onto Gent

The Lone Tree cemetery included Irish graves – we were nominally neutral but thousands enlisted in Irish regiments. The Pool of Peace was mad from a large crater – best use….

Onwards to Ghent (Gent in Flemish) and a convenient riverside free parking. Short reccce into town – and coffee of course!

Lovely evening – sans alcohol (!) and some rain overnight. The forecast for all this week was dire – but it’s improving as we speak.   

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A final cemetery – The Lone Tree with mostly Irish graves.

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The Pool of Peace created in a … crater.

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Wall art – wonder if this lad attended this school ….

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… I’d like to have taught there!

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More wall art – possibly with live inhabitants.

788 – Tuesday 25th July 2017:  Walking Gent

Am – no running – slept a bit late – and a full visit to Gent – our tour guide (unpaid – except for lunch and ice cream – lots) was K.  Quite similar to Bruges but bigger (third largest city in Belgium) and much more to see.  A definite good visit.  The TIC turned up trumps as usual and self guided walking tour commenced. O was the normal focus of attention (can I disguise myself as a Welshie – I could learn to bark?).  We are now getting used to dodging bikes – O will take a bit longer to train….

Lots of photos – and I do know about babies, K – mine were all delivered after 9 months by the stork and placed carefully under a medium sized cabbage leaf – so there!!!   

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Gent is a low motorised zone, except for bikes.

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St Michael’s Bridge with views whichever direction you face.  

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Selfie on the bridge, but my arms are not on enough and I will NOT buy a selfie stick!

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A massive stage straddling the water is just coming down after the Gent Festival.  Every street has tents, stages and litter being cleared away – must have been some party!

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The Belfry and the Cloth Hall … much smaller than the one in Ieper.

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Statue of Jacob van Artevelde in Vrijdagmarkt:  leader and politician 1290-1345 he led the insurgents and undid the boycott of English wool imports.  He is not testing for rain but pointing to his ally England.  Despite his popularity, he was murdered in his home by the head of one of the rich weavers.  The square has been a market place and place of executions; the last being in 1822.

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The lamp post lights up every time there is a birth in Gent … J wanted to wait – he has no idea how long labour may take, despite 4 children!

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Looking across to Graslei – originally warehouses and wharves.  Some of the buildings lean in to aid the hosting of grain and wool.