by Rich Landesberg
No, the title does not refer to the European Council where we visited today. Getting there meant going out in this chilly, windy and rainy Brussels weather. Last year at this time, it was bitter cold with the ground coated in snow.
Today, the temperatures are in the 40s but it is wet and windy with puddles where snow drifts were last year. But we are a hardy bunch…and we have umbrellas and raincoats to keep us dry.
The day started with Dr. Morgan lecturing on the inner workings of the European Union. Then there was time for lunch before heading off to translate the lecture into reality with a visit to the council. We sat where the leaders of Europe meet to decide the future of this part of the world and, by extension, the future of the rest of our increasingly globalized planet.
Our speaker was a lawyer who often sits in these meetings, helps with the negotiations, and drafts memos about what transpired. We were lucky to have such an important person speak with us and answer all of our questions frankly.
The day ended early, just after four. That means only one thing: time for waffles and cappuccino. I know that the course has officially started because Dr. Morgan and I went to our secret spot for waffles with a small carafe of melted dark chocolate. I may give up my hotel room and move into this cafe. Oh, about that secret….about half our students met us there for an afternoon treat. We couldn’t keep such a great place a secret from them.
We are all on our own for dinner tonight. Tomorrow, we are planning to head to Bruges, a wonderful medieval town about 40 minutes away by train (the movie, In Bruges, is dark but great cinema and has some nice views of the city).