So it's officially summer here now, exams are finished and I have a couple of months of freedom to fill and relax in. So I guess it means I have some time to update you all on what I have been up to recently as it seems I have been absent for quite some time.
Well my first holiday in four years was fantastic. There was a slight delay with the train going over to Europe and as we opted to take the next train into the station rather than wait for ours, which was probably a good decision, we got upgraded into the first class section. All in all we arrived about 45 minutes after we were meant to in Brussels. The city is beautiful with it's buildings dating back to the 1600's and small streets full of interesting shops. Never have I seen such a wide variety of shops all selling chocolate. The hotel we stayed in was close to the station and in the multicultural part of the city which meant on Sunday morning we woke up to a wonderful street market buzzing with people and produce, we even saw one man carrying around a tree he had brought.
The holiday was great and we took our time exploring the city and then went on an adventure to Laeken which is where the royal greenhouses are. However after getting severely confused by the signposting in the area, we ended up just walking around the town and several lovely landscaped gardens before calling it a day and heading back into the city. We also went on a chocolate making workshop which was excellent, especially as we got to bring our handmade goodies home with us, although I have to admit that my truffles didn't quite make it to the end of the day. All in all I had a fantastic time soaking up the culture, taking photos, eating a lot of chocolate and drinking fruit beer in the sunshine.
What with the holiday and all Easter seem to fly by and it seems I was home for hardly any time at all before coming back to Bristol. A lot has been happening here with the house and also with university itself. It's been exam season and with one in May and then the rest crammed into 4 days at the end it all got a little bit hectic. I made it out of my house to go and stay with some friends so I was closer to the exam venues and also so it would be quieter for me to get my head down and study and I must say I think it really helped for concentration. With exams over we headed to the pub, then grabbed lunch at an american diner, before spending the afternoon lazing around at a friends house, which ended up being for 9 hours. Now back in my own house and debating how to fill my time before heading home for the summer. Think I have a few things planned to fill the days which also includes tidying the house and packing up my room. There may also be some more trips to the doctors before I get home. I'm ok generally just a few odd symptoms that need sorting out and hopefully I will get the right treatment soon. Also talking of doctors I have begun my voluntary work at the hospital befriending elderly patients who might have a dementia. Have a couple more volunteering projects to try and get involved in when I come back her in September, as well as being the head of the dog walking project for the next year at the union. twistedthreads and I have also been to the Thermal Baths in Bath in the last couple of days and spent four hours doing nothing but laying back in the warm water and relaxing, it was wonderful. There were also steam rooms which had different smells in them that we tried out. My favourite part was the open air pool on the roof that has views out over the city.
I will be heading back to my small town in just over a week, which means I will have o think of things to do that won't cost too much, so might go on some walks around the countryside or if the hay fever is really bad I might just stay inside and do some painting or drawing which i haven't had much time for this year. Then there is the trip over to Canada that I am looking forward to. I now have my tickets for the coach down to Vancouver and have arranged somewhere to stay, so my thoughts have turned to working out how to fit as much as possible into the time I have there. I think it might be a weird experiencing seeing an ocean that reaches to the other side of the world to the one I am used to seeing. I'm really looking forward to heading back out to Canada, a country I haven't been to in 7 years and filling my cameras with pictures.
Hope you are all well.