Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Laura Perry reports from Belgium

Laura Perry, doctoral candidate, is in Belgium, primarily to learn about Geographic Information Systems. Here is her first report on what she is doing:

It is a wondrous thing to be here in Belgium!

We arrived on Sunday and have had a busy schedule since then – hit the ground running. We arrived in Ghent at 11: 30 a.m., checked in at the hotel and immediately started sightseeing (the registration desk for the conference wasn’t scheduled to open until Monday), and we were out until dark, visiting cathedrals – some started in the 600s and finished in the 18th century – and
eating traditional Flemish food (the best beef stew I have ever had, among other things – especially Belgian frites with mayonnaise).

The next day was a whirlwind tour of Brugges, which is 23 minutes away from Ghent by express train, and it’s true – it truly is the Venice of the North. It is a stunning city with most of its medieval architecture intact. We arrived back in Ghent just in time to make the registration desk, and then continued the sightseeing – lots and lots of pictures.

Today I have been attending sessions all morning learning the neatest things about the meld of history with technology, geographic information systems, in particular. I have been meeting people about whom I have read for years and that is a marvelous thing… talking with these down-to-earth and terrific scholars is really invigorating, and I can’t wait to continue the conference this afternoon. By the way – the conference site started out in the 14th century as a hospital and has become a large university. It is a stunning, sprawling site and I am awed by the architecture. Will take lots of pictures here, too.

But for now, I am going to run and find some lunch – or even better, some Belgian chocolate – to sate my appetite. The sun is shining and it is a gorgeous day. Attached is a picture from early this morning; it was still very chilly, but as you can see, I am proudly wearing my Memphis Tiger shirt despite the cool temps. Now the weather has moderated and I am going to venture out.

Will send another e-mail tomorrow if I can.

Laura P.


Post a Comment

<< Home