A personal Greet, a Greet experience.
After a short correspondence, we agreed that the 22nd of February would be the best day to meet each other. Weather predictions were looking good and we were both curios how a “greet “ experience at Hoegaarden would be.
We gave “rendez-vous” at eight a.m. in front of the church. My visitor could leave his car at the market square. It was freezing cold, but the sun was rising in a clear blue sky. It couldn’t be better. We would visit the village later on, so we left the church behind and start walking over the rolling fields, through hollow cobblestone roads into a frozen nature.
Once passed the last houses of Nerm, we were ready to discover the natural reserve “Rosdel. A buzzard on a fence pole was keeping an eye on us. A little bit further we discovered two egrets and an Heron. Woodpeckers were drilling holes in remainings of dead trees. Jays disturbed silence and warned other wildlife about our presence. But we both enjoyed the magical white scenery.
Although I’ll discover regularly wildlife in this region, I can’t guarantee their presence. But we were lucky! At a certain moment I saw some roe deer in a meadow a bit further on. Carefully we continued our walk in their direction. Unfortunately there‘s always one animal on watch and once it discovered us, they went off with big jumps. We counted at least nine white tales disappearing in to the woods.
We came back to Hoegaarden after another great view on the village and her majestic church at the water castle on top of the “Kauterhof” road, near “Hauthem”. We followed the “Nerm river” through the ancient “Egypte”, so I could explain about the water used by the brewers and showing the formal brewery of “Loriers”. Once back in town we went to the “Venetiaen” for a warm cup of coffee. My companion noticed that Hoegaarden was a real beer village indeed. Some inhabitants were already enjoying their preferred draught beer at that time of the day.
Warmed up we went on to discover the village. A small explanation about the market, the pump and the “kiosk”. A look inside the church without forgetting the palm donkey. Through the gardens behind “Kapittelhuys”. Mentioning the murder on the formal owner. A stop at the “Flierefluiter” next to “Villa Hugardis” and a short walk to the “Grand Pont”. So I could tell about the formal sugar industry in Hoegaarden. The “Ravel” brought us to the “Stationstraat”. During the walk back to centre there was enough to tell about. The bridge over the Gete, destroyed together with the big farm “les Hirondelles” during war. The great Mill, The entrance of the formal sugar factory, “Villa des roses”, the “Elfduizend Maagden” farm, the “Cruysblock”farm, “’t Nieuwhuys”and her brewery , the “Doelstraat” with the school, the “St. Franciscus” chapel and so on…
For lunch we went to “Kouterhof” . Were we had a brewers menu! What else? Off course I didn’t forgot to explain about the brewery and “Pierre Celis”. Even the story of “Claeske” was mentioned.
Before returning to the “Venetiaen” for another glass of Hoegaards gold. We had a splendid view on the village from top of city hall.I believe we were both more than satisfied with a day of Hoegaarden experience.