On Monday night, I went to a CouchSurfing meeting at Monk, and met surfers from all over the world. I met a woman from Italy who was very surprised to hear my length of stay, and then told me that 9 months is definitely enough time to learn “how crazy Belgians are.” Not bad crazy, she said, and not necessarily good crazy. Just crazy.
I met a British lobbyist, who told me Istanbul is the most beautiful city in the world. I met a German student, who told me Brussels is a very transient place — usually people stay for around three years before moving on. I met a Spaniard, who apparently is at these meetings every week, and who apparently speaks in metaphors, although I couldn’t understand him.
Ultimately, the clock struck midnight and I was left with an ultimatum: attempt to find my roommate who was somewhere downtown to find a ride or split a cab, or, essentially, couchsurf.
With Brussels being a big city, and the metro being a little seedy after dark, it is not recommended for a girl to ride the last train home alone. And me being cheap and trying to avoid taking cabs back whenever possible, I chose the couch.
The couch belonged to two fellow American students at Vesalius College — one of whom I met at orientation, and had actually arranged to meet that evening, and his flatmate who has been living in Brussels for a couple years. The three of us went back to their EU-quarter house, and we laughed and listened to music and yawned and, being foodies, planned an Iron Chef-esque battle for the near future, amongst other friend-activities.
And in the morning, I rose early to get home for breakfast. I commuted amongst Brussels-EU-expat-folk — smartly dressed with somewhere important to be — a new, busy-city experience.
The spontaneity felt lovely, too. Thank goodness — I recently learned I will actually be homeless for five weeks in the winter. CS-hosts, get ready.