Just for fun

The usual night activity in Europe is to party and drink. The party that I meant is not those we used to organise at those days back in high school – self-cater buffet with few bottles of soft drinks. Here, it is understandable that we are supposed to bring our own drinks, normally beer if there are parties. Sometimes it could be a potluck/normal dinner party or themed/dance party which ended with most people got drunk and dance.

First themed party… Glasses party…

The second one was a gang themed party.

alex, the pimp and the minnie girls

dancing minnie

Another themed party.. cowboy and red indian party..



In Belgium, instead of saying clubbing, we say, “Let’s go to the bar.” It could be either only for drinking or dancing. The girls here do not wear short skirt with tube but casual wear. The house and trance music are also more popular here.

It is Ghent Festival, the music festival tomorrow. It is said that the 10 days non-stop street party will end at 10am and continues at 12pm. So, there will be only 2 hours break in between. There will also be different kind of music in the festival.

Belgium trips

My final crit has ended. However, my schedule was still packed. After the Venice trip, Tristyn and Boris were in Ghent for 12 hours, from 6pm till 6am. They came from Spain after their summer holiday and were here for transit back to Glasgow.

On the same day, after they left, Nicholas and Angeline arrived in the evening. Angeline was here for a week, and during that period, we visited few other places in Belgium. I will post the photos of each place soon. To travel around in Belgium with the “go-pass” ticket is convenient. It is the same price to travel to anywhere in Belgium with it.

We also met with Nicholas’ cousin who is working in Aalst, Belgium for 20 years.

After Angeline was back to Glasgow, we spent most of the time going to the public library to do some research on our history essay to be submitted to University of Strathclyde in August. Poor Nicholas had to stay at Alex’s place and wander around the city, getting lost most of the time.
However, his cousin had taken three days off from work to bring him around. Alex and I did not join for the first two days. On the third day of their trip, his cousin brought us to the South of Belgium and Luxembourg.

There are two Luxembourg in the map.
One is the province of Belgium and another is a small country both by Belgium, France and Germany.

Luxembourg, the country with the highest per capita GDP in the world.

Inside out

What does this look like for you?

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A factory? An industrial office? A warehouse?

The exterior did not look appealing. But when the electronic shutter is rolled up, a huge space is discovered inside.

It is an architectural office, 2 storey block which takes only 1/3 of the land area.

The remaining open space is used for exhibition space.

Hotel in the church, Maastricht

During our study trip in Maastricht, this hotel in the church was our last visit destination.

This was an old church..

the exterior

the entrance

And now converted to a five-star hotel with modern interior..


hotel lounge

the bar

There are many centuries-old yet beautiful buildings in Europe. In order to preserve the cultural and historical aspect, conserving the existing facade and renovating the interior is a common creative application. The modern interior has indeed complimented the existing details of the

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The first trip of our study trip was to Maastricht, situated in the south-eastern part of the Netherlands.

We first arrived at the office of the developer, Vesteda. We were given a brief introduction of the company’s concepts and ideas. In Malaysia, in order to maximise the profit, many developers have neglected the aesthetical and quality value of the housing development except those for the rich. However, this developer company approached to their production in a different way – to balance the economical feasibility and quality architectural aspects.

Our walking tour started in the housing area developed by Vesteda. With the addition of some greenery areas and suitable layout of public spaces, it contributes so much to the quality surroundings.

The projects involved are more than just housing properties but also mixed use buildings. Furthermore, whether we realise it or not, such details in the environment are important to create a lively area and subsequently improve the tenant’s quality of life.

Ceramique by Alvaro Siza

The trip continued after lunch break to the other side of the city. We explored the old city center of Maastricht and had a look at the different architectural qualities – the old and modern.

panaromic view from the bridge

Note book

The recent and upcoming posts are mostly photos. I had no time to think, refine my thoughts and write.

I have bought a note book on the day before I left to Germany. It is not the expensive Moleskine notebook like Alex’s, but enough for me to jot down my thoughts conveniently. I supposed I have to do that, because my blog is soon dying or converted to photo blog (perhaps it is already now).

It takes time for me to write. I am a slow thinker.

ps. I think I am now in Munich…


There were four of us and Nicholas has just left. He went back to UK for his interviews.

The fantastic four

alex tried to strangle me.
i am still alive..

Our real adventure begins tomorrow, there will be no more nice home dinner. We are

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now still at Alexander’s house with warm hospitality from the parents. We will be having sandwiches for the rest of the days of our trip. We are not certain about our journey route yet, only rough itinerary. We might stay at Alexander´s friends´ place at some cities, and hostels for the others. Petrol in Germany isn´t cheap but travelling by car is the most convenient and easiest way to get around. I will be travelling with two Alexes during this trip – Alex Tee and Alexander Schumm.

We visited Alexander´s university yesterday’s morning. It used to be the Mannheim palace and now renovated for the university use. We saw the fully equipped library. Part of the palace is still maintained as a museum for the visitors. The rest of the blocks are used for lecture halls.

Then we headed to Heídelberg. We climbed the hills, one to the castle and one opposite the castle.

i was seeing what the king saw in the past
from the opposite hill
Finally, we were back to Mannheim in the evening. We had a walk around the city after dinner.

mannheim city centre

I wish I would have more time to write about the trips but wait till I get back to Ghent. I would prefer to write more on what are unseen in the photos rather than posting only few photos of the places and state that I have been there.

However, the Ghent festival begins as I am back in Belgium. And I also have to finish the assignments for my exchange programme review in August.

In Germany

Unlike other European countries that I have been to, Germany is a country which has a lot of modern architecture. Here, I saw more steel and glass buildings than those old buildings with decorative facades.

We reached Frankfurt yesterday, the financial centre. And I am currently in Mannheim where Alexander stays.

Frankfurt view from the tower viewing deck

Off to Germany

Five more hours and I will be in the train, heading to Germany for two-week travel. Alex, Nic and I will be meeting another Alex, who is Alex’s ex-housemate in Glasgow. He’ll show us around with his car. However, Nicholas will only be with us in this trip for 2 days, he is flying back to Glasgow from Frankfurt for interviews.

Germany trip plan

Blog will still be updated with the scheduled posts. I am now blogging, blogging and blogging.