Ok - so I am in a mood again! This time my bite is over people and image (or at least that is how I see it!). I live in a country with possibly the best public transport system in the world. In fact, there is not a single person in Belgium who lives more than 800m away from either a tram/train/bus which leaves at least once an hour. Living in the city, we have no probs, so a car is very unnecessary unless we wish to go to concerts late at night in Brussels, but there are always ways around this. The country is also quite socialist (and in a lot of places, green) so a great deal of encouragement is given towards people riding their bikes or taking public transport. So, it gets my goat when I am taking a tram home and there is a traffic jam. I end up stepping off, and walking faster than the tram (due to the cars sharing the same road). This is in the middle of the city, where people arent allowed to park anyway, and they just sit in a single file tooting their horns (like that is going to make a difference). And, as far as I can see it, (and I have only a very narrow mind...!) people only drive to the city, and pay €20 per day to park, just to show that they have a car, and to have something to complain about for the rest of the day. It also makes me wonder why people want 2 cars - but its the same story. I dont know why it bothers me so much, Im not particularly a good advocate for the environment, nor am I well read politically, I just really hate how everyone needs to keep up with the 'Jones'' and cannot survive without sitting in grid-lock for 2 hours a day (to travel 50km). Yes Im rambling, but venting is quite easy on this website!.
Another issue I have had this week... just over a week ago, a child was stabbed 5 times (to death) in Brussels Central Train station (in broad tube-light) over an mp3 player worth about €20 and the whole country was up in arms because apparently a Moroccan (or North African...) did it (for those of you who dont know, Moroccans are viewed upon as Aborigines are in Oz). So all of the right wing parties and people wanted to get involved to get rid of all North Africans etc. Now it turns out that it was actually a Polish person (not that it makes a difference where the person came from). But, no apology is being made. The poor child is not allowed to rest in peace until the nation blames an entire race of people. I just dont like it because some people talk to me about this as though Im a 'Belgian' and I tell them that I too am 'foreign' but apparently Im not 'one of them' whatever this all means. How am I a more 'equal' human being because I have green eyes? I know this is an often talked over topic, but yet, I dont think its talked about enough.
Am about to head out with Toms mates and hope to drink a lot (its a long weekend) due to a heavy squash work-out this morning! We have bought Maarten a sky-diving ticket for his birthday, so are keen to see what he thinks!