|#Jfashion meet in #Brussels, #Belgium (aka the WORST place to hold #events)
||[Aug. 17th, 2016|10:09 am]
|[||Tags|||||belgium, brussels, egl, eglcommunity, events, fashion, food, friends, fun, jfashion, lolita, meet, meetup, ootd, otome, otome kei, outfit, photography, rant, street harassment||]|
It seemed like a great plan to hold a meet and go see the flower carpet, so that's what we did on Saturday, the 13th of August!
The upside: fun with friends I don't see often enough and meeting new fun people. That was awesome!
The downside: Brussels, which is always FULL of rude people. Also nice people, but mostly JERKS. Seriously. I lost count of the amount of times where some asshole literally shoved a camera in our face and took our photo, as if we were anything less than human just because we decided not to dress in a way that fashion magazines like Elle think is appropriate.
And when politely pointing out that such behavior is NOT on, they didn't even want to understand.
People seem to fail to understand that when someone dresses different, they do it for themselves, because they like it, NOT for the entertainment of others, complete strangers in the street. It's not because you don't wear a standard summer dress, or shorts/jeans and a tshirt/top, you seize to be a human being.
So yeah, Brussels continues to be my LEAST favourite place to have a meetup. Quite spectacularly so.
At one point some guy kept on snapping our photo with his smartphone, we politely asked him to stop. He wouldn't. He took 5 photos of me walking up to him and holding up my hand to shield his camera, and then he _still_ wouldn't get that his behavior was really not on. Dody and I ended up shouting at him. Dody and I ended up shouting at a lot of people. And rightfully so.
Some people were really pretty devious about it too. Like this one American guy approached us, pretending to be genuienly interested and paying us compliments. Only to then turn around to his friends and shout "hey who wants a selfie with these pretty girls". It could be that he was just that socially awkward, but I (and I wasn't the only one) felt like we were being set up. He could have just asked for a photo without pulling an entire spiel first.
Some people did ask, but they DEMANDED explanations when we said no. I just said "we dress like this for ourselves, not for the entertainment of others". That generally did the trick, because it made them realise we were people just like everyone else. And frankly, they don't go chasing after every girl wearing regular clothes, so they shouldn't go chasing after us either.
Luckily some people were just lovely, which was such a welcome change. One muslim girl stopped Claire in the street, just to tell her how amazing she thought she looked. That was seriously the best thing!
The people at Café Tasse were super interested, friendly and respectful. When one customer complained about the "girls in costumes" the shop girl said something along the lines of "it's a fashion style from Japan, I think they all look like princesses and I think its awesome!". I kinda wanted to hug her for that.
So yeah, definitely not all bad, but sadly for every friendly person in Brussels, there's 10 assholes. And that makes it very unpleasant to meet there.
Also, if someone wants to go with "you bring it upon yourself looking like that", save it. It does NOT matter how people dress, ever, it is NEVER an excuse to treat them badly. The end.
Welcome to Brussels, this entire photo right here sums up the entire city pretty well, in my opinion.
Anyhow, onto the day!
Originally my plan had been to go to Brussels over Louvain (as there is no direct train from my house). But in the end I changed my mind to go over Antwerp, because I figured that trains to the capital would run properly from either, and that way Bert could sleep for 20 minutes longer (he was driving me to the station). When we got into Berchem, there was a train to Brussels on the opposite platform. But I figured "eh, this train is on time, I'll be in Brussels way too early, that'll be far too awkward, I'll just proceed as planned".
Of course, between Berchem and Centraal, the final stop, the train managed to build a massive delay, which caused me to miss my connection. Result: I was half an hour late. I warned Claire, who warned the others, and luckily they were all happy to wait for me, phew!
Whilst planning the event we had said we'd go for a picnic, but then we figured that on a Saturday in Brussels, that was probably a pretty bad plan. So we decided we'd first go see the flower carpet and then see about food.
So we did that, slower than we would have as people kept on harasing us for photos.
We didn't see the flower carpet from above, because everywhere was mega crowded, and in the end, none of us really felt to get in that kind of sardine situation.
And we were kinda hungry so we settled on food at the nearest Exki.
I had planned to be good and NOT eat cheesecake, but the savory options either contained stuff I was allergic to (70%) and stuff I was really NOT in the mood for. So cheesecake it was! Self preservation and all that jazz (which is still debatable considering how badly I do with processed sugar). Maybe next time I'll ask the rest if they want to eat at PAUL instead and stuff myself on their giant olive breadsticks of nommyness. I can't believe I passed up the opportunity to get some of those *facepalms*.
We wandered around some more and found a spot to do photos.
Maria, who instigated the meet (much appreciated!).
Claire, with and without her awesome sunglasses :).
Mandatory silly photo!
My outfit, picture by Claire
Flower headband: Crown and Glory
Bow tie: Platform 9 3/4
Skirt: made it myself
Socks: ebay seller
Shoes: Secret Shop
Umbrella: Angelic Pretty
Accessories: Han Cholo, asos, handmade, Poorman's Gold Label, Roxy, H&M
More silly photos!! :)
And then asked the nice military that were standing around nearby if they could please take our group shot. Which they did, huzzah!
We visited some stores, because why not. It's a good thing I have so much restraint because else M.A.C would have made me a LOT poorer! At INNO we took pictures :).
Again, good thing I have restraint, or that garter belt would have been MINE! It was hella pricy though. The bra is easy to resist, I don't like padding and there's a hell of a lot of padding in there! For those wondering about the brand, it's Marlies Dekkers, and no, she generally doesn't do steampunk designs.
We checked out some more shops before we settled down in Café Tasse's café upstairs. Because Café Tasse is amazeballs! I think we all got chocolate (I got with with matcha, milk with nougat; both for myself and then 5 tiny dark with mint ones for Bert's nan. Before settling upstairs in the super cosy café area. I wonder if they'd let us hold a meet in the top floor.
"Lucky pack" photo, for reasons everyone into Japanese fashion, especially lolita fashion, will understand.
It was nearing 6 when Claire, Maria and I bade the others farewell and we wandered back to Central station. We said goodbye to Maria there, as she didn't have to take a train and we did. Claire's train got moved to another platform _2_ minutes before it was due to come in. Luckily it was 4 minutes late so she didn't miss it. I still had time between her train and mine, so I grabbed a sandwich at Panos, and went to my platform. Where I saw one train after another getting cancelled (construction works my ass, there was something seriously wrong), but luckily mine still went. I didn't want to get stuck in Antwerp Central because I don't feel safe there on my own after 6pm, so I went via Louvain (which has a much better connection anyway).
Normally I would have had a connection about 10 minutes later, but that train came in, and then changed to the next one which goes 15 minutes later. No explanation at all why a train got cancelled.
So last Sunday the NMBS DEFINITELY was a special kind of hell.
At least I made it there and back again :)
But yeah, I can't wait 'till I have my driver's licence because the trains are so often hella fail XD. I would probably still take the train to places like Antwerp and Louvain, but for others, especially those with connections, I'd seriously consider driving instead.
All my other photos of this meet are here :)