After our final Mechelen breakfast Mr C decided he wanted to stay in the hotel room until it was time to catch a cab to the station. He was also all for waiting until the last minute to book the cab, but I insisted we booked it straight after breakfast. I didn’t want the possibilities of any last minute complications.
I had no desire to spend my last two hours in Mechelen in the hotel room (even though the room was nice). Instead I set off with my camera for a stroll and a bit of exploring. It was a beautiful crisp sunny morning. I walked in a new direction and found the garden that is mentioned in the hotel literature. I then wandered back and walked some more familiar paths and enjoyed seeing the by now familiar buildings in a different light.
All too soon it was time for me to return to the hotel in order to check out and catch the cab to the station. When the cab arrived we noticed it was the same driver who had driven us to the hotel on arrival. I didn’t find the taxi any easier to clamber into than I did on our previous journey. The seats were high to step up to and there was very little leg room. We arrived at the station just in time to catch the fast train to the Eurostar terminal, rather than the slow train we had taken on our inbound journey. This left us plenty of time to check in and get through immigration controls.
Our Eurostar carriage was almost empty and when the train was due to depart we were told we could move to a different seat in the carriage if we wished as no one else would be joining us. I quickly moved to a seat with a table. The new seats had the added bonus of being nearer to our luggage meaning we could easily keep an eye on it at station stops.
Shortly after our departure we were served with a delicious lunch of Belgium cheeses (there was also a beef option). We were asked ‘would you like wine or was it too early?’ I quipped ‘it is never to early for wine’ causing the attendants to laugh We were then given the choice of red, white or rose. Decisions, decisions… As we started tucking into the meal the conductor entered our carriage. He looked at us and said ‘Bon Appetite’. We must have caught his eye because we were the only ones that got that treatment…
The return journey ran just as smoothly as the outward journey. All in all it was much more relaxing than flying to and from Zurich last year.