Thursday, April 24, 2014

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A little American house in Flanders fields.

One can find this little treasure at the Memorial Museum in Zonnebeke; one of the many little prefab houses donated by the United States to help those who lost their home due to the war. I think it dates from the early twenties, and it got even severly damaged during a wwii bombing. 

Monday, April 14, 2014

The Great War

Reconstructed trenches, Memorial Museum Passchendaele, Zonnebeke.
The Great War started a 100 years ago and is still very present in the- nowadays- peaceful Flemish landscape. The memorials and museums are for the moment full of tourists, many of them had a grandfather or great grandfather enlisted during the war. I'm a bit jealous when I see how well prepared British children are when they visit the area, and how well they understand the importance and impact of the Great War. Alas, in West-Flanders itself one can only notice a rapidly diminishing interest amongst local youngsters. We need more projects like this: "James Joins Up"

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

El "Mercator"

Uno de los mayores atractivos del puerto de Ostende es el bergantín "Mercator", que previamente fué buque escuela de la flota mercante de Bélgica. Fué diseñado por el explorador belga de la Antártida Adrien de Gerlache, y recebió su nombre del famoso cartógrafo flamenco Gheeraert Mercator y fué construido en Escocia en 1932.
Sirvió de buque escuela hasta 1960 y es museo desde 1961. Aparte de ser un buque escuela se utilizó también en expediciones científicas.
Su viaje más famoso tuvo lugar en 1936 y se dirigió a Molokai para traer de vuelta los restos del padre Damián.
Hoy en día domina orgulloso la marina de Ostende y merece ciertamente una visita.

El "Mercator" Stats

The ladies of Ghent.

Lovely ladies in Ghent, there are lots of them!




The "Mercator"

One of Ostend's famous landmarks is the barkentine "Mercator", a former training ship of the Belgian merchant fleet.
It was designed by the Belgian antartic explorer Adrien de Gerlache and named after the famous Flemish cartographer Gheeraert Mercator, and built in Scotland in 1932.
The ship served as a schoolship until 1960 and is since 1961 a museum.
Apart from being a training ship it was also used for scientific expeditions, and it's most famous trip was in 1936, to Molokai, to bring back home the earthly remains of father Damian.
Nowadays it proudly dominates the marina of Ostend and is certainly worth a visit.