Yet another interesting driving experience in Belgium yesterday. I was leaving our village to get to Zoë's and noticed a significant drop in the speed on the highway. Not long after joining the conga line of trucks, signs became visible that I had not previously noticed in the month that we've been here.
These are the signs that apparently have sprung up along with the smog, lowering the speed limit from 120 to 90 on Belgian highways!
The smog is caused by a high pressure area with virtually no wind, with much of the pollution caused by heavy traffic and old diesel engines.
These crafty little signs sit parallel to the highways and when an alert is mounted, someone goes along and turns the signs outward to face the traffic. There are also overhead and roadside electrical signs that flash and carry on when it gets dark, but the amazing thing is that the traffic actually heeds the signs. Quite delightful really, because this is such a civilized speed given the road conditions at any given time.
I didn't mind coming home in the dark, because the speed was still reduced. Overnight we had more of that unheard of Belgian snow.
This morning, I gamely started out for Sterrebeek. Using an umbrella to clear off the supposedly non-existent Belgian snow, I don't have a scraper, because they apparently don't get snow here! :) Two seconds off the parking pad, realize that the roads are glare ice. The first hide-and-seek idiot didn't know enough to slow down giving our line time to duck in between the parked cars, and of course the bang-the-curb-fishtailing-adventures begin. It's like watching some sort of Lego set-up. These little cars can do amazing things...one just has to stay out of their way.
I tried to get to the highway, where if I understood the radio correctly, they had just pulled all the trucks from the highways leading into Brussels. Turned around and with the help of "Klara" the Belgian GPS lady, I found yet another way home, meandering through the countryside, which as it turns out was much safer than my usual route.
SNOW DAY! I guess I'm joined by plenty of people in North America. I will spend the day getting caught up on overdue email and posting. Have a safe day wherever you are.