mercredi 14 novembre 2007

50 Euros

As I stood in the police station in the town square at Grimbergen, a suburb of Brussels, I wonder how this became my life. How was it that my name was now being entered on to the Belgian police's database of offensive foreigners?

Now, dear reader, I don't want you to panic. I'm not here on drugs charges, or for having bared my nethers at the locals (although I'm certain they'd be impressed). It's a simple case of mistaken identity. They've mistaken me for someone who knows, understands and cares about the intricacies of the Belgian parking system.

How was I supposed to know that parking is on the left hand side of the road for the first half of the month, then it switches to the right hand side? Strikes me as a bit daft. Are they worried that the road will wear unevenly if it doesn't get equal use on both sides?

And here was I singing the praises of the Belgians, but a couple of days ago.

Anyway, 50 euros later, I get out of the police station and a lovely young officer (who only spoke flemish, but I'm sure there was a connection, ha ha) drove me back to my car and took the clamp off it (oh yes, there was a clamp - did I fail to mention this?). He then waited for me to do a three-point turn and park on the opposite side of the road, said well done and left me to it.

I can only guess that it was a quiet night and he had no international terrorists to catch.

2 commentaires:

Stew a dit…

Bloody Belgians . . .
I was telling someone just the other day about the Flemish/French Belgian problem, and they were telling me about how law-abiding the Dutch are. They were in Amsterdam. At a Pelican crossing. Hordes of people and no-one crossing the road, in spite of there being no traffic, because the little man was red. The 2 English girls think "bollocks to this" and cross the road, only to hear a tide of tutts and mutterings from the fearful Dutch stuck on the pavement in fear of the little red man.

The nearest town to me (population 300 + 2 traffic lights) also has alternate side parking. 2 Small signs on the walls either end of the high street tell you which side of the road to park and when.

travelling, but not in love a dit…

Apparently the King has now stepped in to try and sort out the horrible mess that is the Belgian (lack of) government. If it can be sorted...

My favourite Belgian thing recently has to be the fake news story last year...very classy