Thursday, February 23, 2017

The Zimmer Tower in Lier, Belgium

Remember when we were in Leuven, Belgium, this past December and I shared all those posts on this, that, and the other:  the two abbeys, the two Christmas markets, the two basilicas.  Yup.  THAT trip.

We had a great B&B hostess, Greet, who gave us all kinds of ideas for what we might want to see, one of which was the clock tower in nearby Lier, 45 km away.  Lier.  Hmmm.  That suddenly sounded familiar.  So I went to my search bar above (and to the tags on the left) to see if we had been there before.  Another YUP.

Back in 2011, 6 years ago, we had stopped in Dendermonde, Mechelen and Lier on another trip home, hitting some highlights in those 3 Belgium cities.  But somehow we totally missed the Zimmer Tower in Lier...the one thing Greet told us to see.

So, on our way home this time, we went specifically to see the tower!

First of all, we had to walk a bit through town before finding the tower.
You know me and architecture...and weathervanes!

Then there it was.
This is the Zimmer Tower, also known as the Cornelius Tower, from the 14th century,
as part of the city's fortification.
The Jubilee Clock on the front was built by astronomer and clockmaker, Louis Zimmer, in 1930.

Here are some enlargements of the separate dials on the clock.
And from Wiki, below, are the descriptions of what the dials mean.

(image from Wiki)
Who knew you could put so much information on a clock!

If we had stayed longer, we would have seen some bell ringing from the side panels.
Actually, we did hear them but weren't fast enough on the draw to get what was happening.
Next time.

But we DID have enough time for a koffie break (think potty break),
where we got into the Christmas spirit again with Sinterklaas and Zwarte Piet Belgium chocolates.

Sometimes these quickie trips are the best, you know.  Short and sweet!

Thursday, February 16, 2017

England 2016: For Lisl, Michael and Chris

Call this the unassigned bin or the misc. file or the leftovers from our England trip back in September last year.  Whichever.  But I don't want these memories languishing in a black hole somewhere.  So, this is for YOU...Lisl, Michael and Chris, the usual suspects.

Let's start with Chris, since he was the one who picked us up at the Bristol airport.

Chris is Astrid's "Big Brother."  
On the way to Lisl's from the airport, he stopped at the Stanton Drew Great Circle.
At 371 ft. in diameter, it's Britain's 2nd largest stone circle, after Avebury.
We had already seen Avebury with him in 2011, so this was extra special.

Lisl is Ginnie's "Big Sis."  
And that's where Chris took us that day, where Lisl invited him to stay for supper with us.
You could call Lisl the Queen of Tarts.  :)  (Yes, she can take a joke.)
Btw, I klept the top-left image of moi from Chris' Shutterchance blog.
And, yes, we're all Shutterchance photographers:  Lisl, Chris, Astrid and Ginnie.

"Big Sis" Lisl is a mother of 3 and a grandma of two, with this charmer as her youngest.
Astrid and I felt so lucky to meet him after hearing all about his birth earlier.

OMG.  I have never seen Lisl look so radiant.
We g'mas know, don't we!

Besides being a mother and g'ma, cook, and photographer, Lisl is also a true-blue scientist.
(She also walks the byways of England, bird watches, gardens, visits the elderly, WWFs, etc., etc.)
Lucky for us, again, we got to observe a rainy-day moth collaboration.
When I say "scientific," I mean it.
Moths are captured in moth traps (later released) and documented for what, when and where.
All this info is tabulated in books for "what's happening to the moths" in England.

If I'm reading it right, there were 15 different moths brought in that day by the group.
Can you picture yourself doing something like that?
Someone has to do it!

The day Lisl and I went off on our own to Wells Cathedral...
this is what Michael was doing as we left:  watching and listening to a symphony.
It really touched my hart and soul.

We have such fond memories of eating out with them.
Fox & Hounds has become a favorite...

and now, also, the Fat Friar, where the food is plentiful and better than good,
whether you like mushy peas or not!

Have you ever thought about how much we "fellowship" when we eat good food together!
It's becoming one of the most important parts of traveling for me, the older I get.
Hmmm.  I ponder this in my hart of hearts.

In the meantime,
THANK YOU, Lisl, Michael and Chris.