On our flight to Europe, we ended up having an empty seat by us and we were so excited to be able to stretch out a little more for our 10 hour flight. However, before we took off we were told someone would be moved to our empty seat. We all rolled our eyes and secretly hated this person already. But little did we know, she would put smiles on our faces as soon as she showed up. Her name is Meta and she’s the reason we went to our next stop, Antwerp. We had no intention of going there but after meeting Meta, who was more than nice to us, we decided to visit her in Antwerp (she invited us don’t worry, it wasn’t creepy!).
We arrived at our hostel in Antwerp and we could hear chickens clucking in the backyard. Later to find out, we could use their eggs to make our own breakfast! A huge commodity in the life of a traveler, along with a warm shower and good toilets. It is probably our favorite hostel since being here. The owner was our age, loved the NBA, and was fun to talk to. We ended up meeting our UK friend, Tom, who was biking his way through Europe. After spending time with Tom, we noticed his accent was much different from Darren’s, another UK roommate we had hung out with on our trip in Brugge. Darren was close to Scotland, almost impossible to understand at times, while Tom was from a town close to London, more of a natural English accent. It was pretty interesting hearing the two different accents, maybe comparable to a person from the South chatting with someone from Boston or New York. We really bonded with Tom, having great conversations and lots of beers together. One of my favorite things Tom said was, while he was getting ready to go out with us, he started brushing his teeth and he said to himself “why am I even brushing them, they’re Americans and they all have great teeth.” Tom continued to say that we were by far the most fun and easy going people he has met, and we ended up meeting up with him later in Amsterdam as he biked through Europe.
We met with Meta at her restaurant for lunch and she ended up bringing her niece and nephew along. They were all so interesting and beautiful, inside and out. Meta was from New York, met a Belgian man and moved to Antwerp. Her niece and nephew were born in Israel, were Jewish, moved to Belgium, and now live in Florida. They told us a few things about themselves and their lives and we were instantly jealous of them. After we ate lunch, which of course Meta paid for (this family was beyond wealthy), we hung out with her niece and nephew. They were kind enough to show us where they were living and let us hang out with them for a little bit. After hanging out with this family for most of the day, we were in shock. Did that just really happen? The stories they told and the experiences they shared caused our jaws to drop. We finished the day with some drinks and wandered around Antwerp.