As the freeway turns away from the coast, I find myself on secondary roads going through Belgium. The land is flat, the scenery pastoral, the roads are pleasant- gentle curves through the farmland that seem to have the riders relaxed enjoyment as their sole reason for being. As the towns become larger and closer together I slowly realise that I’m actually riding through the suburbs of Bruges. Cool! Eyelids firmly back in their full, upright position, I follow the signs to the centrum.
The BMW R1200 GS Adventure is not designed for the medieval streets that form Bruges’ historic city center. Despite the enduro transmission’s low first gear, my whole arm gets sore from feathering the clutch as I negotiate my way through the crowds. After more than one lurching stop and a growing fear that I may actually cook my clutch, I make it to the main square. I only have a few hours before I have to be off, so the rest will have to wait for a return trip- this stop is just going to be for pics, lunch, and a little wander.
I doubt it’s the first Alberta plate in Bruges, but I don’t think they see too many.
For those who have seen ‘In Bruges’, you’ll understand why I parked slightly to the side of the bell tower…
Despite the crowds, Bruges deserves more time than I was able to give it and I’ll be making a point of going back there soon. I think I’ll find a place outside of town to stay and leave my bike there before taking the bus/train in. No matter how good a cook you are, cooking a clutch never smells good.