|A visit to the Ghent cat cafe and other things
||[Sep. 12th, 2016|03:23 pm]
|[||Tags|||||adopt don't shop, animalphotography, animals, architecture, belgium, cat cafe, cats, cosmetics, day trip, eyeshadow, ghent, makeup, nyx, nyx cosmetics, shopping, travel, trip||]|
Babs and I had been saying that we should visit the NYX store in Ghent together since pretty much before it opened in June, and last Saturday (the 10th), we finally managed!
She had also discovered that there is now a cat café in Ghent, dreamCATchers, which is also an adoption café for the cats living there, and because we both love cats and it's a very worthy charity, she made the reservations.
I had made sure to go to the train station super early because this time of year, a lot of people need to get their travel cards sorted out for the academic year, and that always takes forever. Sure enough, one guy was sorting one out for his daughter, in a way so embarrassing that both his wife and daughter had fled the building, pretending they didn't know him. Of course, that just meant things lasted even LONGER. I asked the boy in front of me if he needed a card and he said yes, so I asked if he would mind letting me go first if it ended up being close to my train. He said that was absolutely no problem, so thanks to him, I managed to catch the earlier train with a few minutes to spare. The other people in the queue thankfully all just needed tickets to somewhere too, which is pretty fast.
I'm glad that boy let me go first, because he needed a special kind of travel card, and the guy issuing the tickets was pretty displeased because there was a pretty long queue and it would apparently take a while.
An earlier train meant I was in Berchem station earlier (and that damn door was still being iffy, thankfully I didn't get hurt by it this time!), so I sat myself down reading my book 'till Babs got there. The Affinity Bridge by George Mann is really amazing, I'm now 1 book and 1 short story into the Newbury and Hobbes series and I can't wait to read all of the
From the station on, Babs drove to Ghent, and the drive and a short walk later we found ourselves in the city center, where we stopped by Lush so Babs could stock up and we could say hello to Annso and Margot, who work there and whom we hadn't seen in AGES.
Turns out that the people in the Lush store in Antwerp purposely misinformed me, and that there is in fact NOT methylparaben in everything. I still wouldn't standard buy Lush because I love Yves Rocher and that store is just in town, whereas for Lush I have to go to Antwerp or another city, so that's not practical. But it at least means I can stop feeling guilty when buying Lush for friends :).
The NYX store had been stocked with the palette I wanted the day before, so that was very lucky. A lot of things were sold out, but there was still a lot available. Of course, I didn’t stop to think that with NYX eyeshadow, I’d need a primer (M.A.C and Sephora are so pigmented I don’t need one with that) so of course, I forgot to look for one. I didn’t get a spare brown mascara because those were sold out, but asos carries them too, so it’s not like I have to go to Ghent to get them. I also got the gold Lid Lingerie to do steampunk makeup detailing and a hot single filling in LOL (what's in a name right?) for a look I plan to do next year. At € 2.80 I felt that was a pretty good solution considering I’d only need it once :).
The girls at NYX sure have really good memories, because two of them remembered me from opening day, back in June. Whilst it was mega crowed, and made a point to stop by and start a conversation. That was super awesome, much appreciated. I love the atmosphere in the store!
You can read a review I wrote about the stuff I bought at NYX here :)
After we had finished our shopping, we stopped by PAUL for lunch (olive sticks, om nom nom), and then went to the cat café. Where we had tea and played with Greg. Two of the cats were sleeping, and 3 of them were mostly hiding in their quiet room (in which visitors aren’t allowed), but Greg ventured out a few times. I even got Moody, a really shy and traumatised cat, to play with me for a bit (I was standing in the opening and it was a toy on a long string so I could still reach her), which made the people of the café super happy. They were so glad to see she was interacting with a total stranger in a positive way. I’m glad I managed, because I think Moody is a really sweet cat and I hope she can start to feel well enough to find a forever home. I’m sure she could live in the café indefinitely too, but she (like all other homeless cats) deserves a good home with people that love her.
I really feel like dreamCATchers is a great initiative that makes people aware that a lot of great cats need a good home. Plus it's awesome for people that love cats but can't have one of their own, that way they can go spend some time with them in this cozy café. I would go there again if I had the chance.
If only because they need all the support they can get, and it's a cause I can really get behind.
I'm doing a page in the next BCM too to give the a little extra promotion :)
Moodie apparently doesn't leave her carrier 'till the café is closed and there's hardly anyone around.
I kinda want to build a construction like that for Loa :).
After our time in the cat café we went on a fruitless search for lash glue, I remembered I hadn’t gotten brown eyeshadow and braved the crowd at NYX. There weren’t many people in there when we first went in, and now the store was FULL X_x. So whilst Babs nommed her froyo, I had a look, but they didn’t have what I needed. We looked around at Primark, where I found little presents for my nieces (I always start my end of year shopping super early so I can avoid the Sinterklaas and Christmas shopping madness). Babs found more stuff she needed at ICI PARIS XL and we lamented their total lack of wipes (every cosmetics store has wipes so you can clean off swatches, but not IPXL, oh no, such basic service is beneath them). Luckily I always carry wet wipes and a hand cleaner by Yves Rocher, so we managed to get clean hands after all.
Balloon building amused me.
Our final stop was World’s End, where the comic I reserved for Bert half of JUNE still hadn’t appeared. I was again told I could just order it online to which I rather replied that the current service didn’t give me the kind of trust in the store I’d need to place an online order. It really do NOT. Seriously, World’s End. WORST geek store in Belgium. Half of the trades there have turned up covers too, it’s beyond not ok. I prefer Mekanik any day of the week!
I ended up in Berchem station nearly 40 minutes before my train, so I popped into Panos and got a blueberry muffin and found a place to sit with my book. Hail book. The train was mega FULL, so I asked the conductor if I could sit in first class (on account to my inability to stand for long times) and she said it was totally fine. That was really lucky, because having to stand for over half an hour in a mega full, mega hot train would have undoubtedly resulted in me fainting. Fainting is do not want!
When I finally did get home and had dinner, I pretty much just vegetated with my book. Because it really was an awesome book. I’ll have to review it for The Gatehouse soon.
Ghent is a really beautiful city, and if you want to see more of my photos from there, click this link!