Monday, August 25, 2014

Bastogne, Belgium: Battle of the Bulge

So...we love our history. Adam especially enjoys WWI and WWII. Hopefully, most of you are familiar with "Battle of the Bulge" or the significance of Bastogne, and then you would understand why it was important for us to go here. There is also a piece of this captured in the "Band of Brothers" mini-series produced by HBO a few years ago. One thing that I did not appreciate about Belgium, especially in this area, is how much they LOVE the United States and continue to carry an abundance of gratitude towards the US for their support and defense during the war. It was heartwarming to see and experience this. This entire museum was built to honor the US military members who served and died defending Belgium during WWII.
The museum follows the TRUE story line of 4 people: A Belgian school teacher, a Belgian child, an American solider, and a German solider. Their stories cross at the end. The only other museums that have produced such emotion in me were the Holocaust Museum in Washington DC and the Pearl Harbor Memorial in Honolulu. This was also one of the most well organized and well done museum we have ever been to, it surpassing several of the Smithsonians...which it saying a lot for me because I am obsessed with how great those are.

They found these items when cleaning up the area to build the museum

The hole is from being struck in battle

You know I had to capture the nurse uniform

Gratitude for the United States, reminded me of the WWII Memorial in Washington DC

Overlooking the battlefields

Entry into the crypt

After spending most of our day at the museum, we decided to walk through the town of Bastogne, as it looked quite charming as we passed through. That and we were hungry. I lost Adam at the butcher for a long while...

Unexpected and disappointed

So we had ordered these AMAZING little croquettes (small lightly fried rolls of meat and cheese) in Dinant and we hoping to have them again in Bastogne....well, somewhere things got lost in translation. Instead of getting an array of 4 different types croquettes as we imagined them, we got 4 different types of grilled cheese sandwiches. This completely explained why the waiter looked at us like we were slightly crazy when ordering. Despite the disappointment of not getting what we thought we ordered, the sandwiches were actually quite good. We spent several hours here, slowly eating and enjoying a few drinks, while enjoying the sunlight and people watching.


Recognize any of the names? No "Jennifer" or "Chris" to be found here.