We are at Porte De Namur, the site of one of the gates to the old walled city of Brussels. There is no gate here anymore, but it is a main thoroughfare and traffic zips by. We leave that behind us as we descend into the Metro station.
We walk silently towards the left hand side of the station to catch a south bound metro. We need to stop at Gare Du Midi before changing to a more suitable tram that will deposit us within walking distance of home.
I hear a rumbling from the bowels of the station as a Metro lurches its way through its warren under the city. There is a slight breeze around us as the air shifts its way around the station and settles down again.
The station has been modified recently because of the transport company’s attempts to crack down on unauthorised use of the network. They know that people hop on and off without paying and while their attempts to catch people is increasing, it is not fool-proof yet.
They have started to install barriers in stations which will only open when a valid ticket is presented. It is perhaps annoying to rush hour commuters but it makes lots of sense. Within a few years, all stations will have these barriers; Porte De Namur station is one of the first.
We swipe our tickets and walk down the staircase to the lower level. At the foot of the stairs, signs instruct passengers that this staircase is an entrance not an exit.
Since the signs can be read just as well when upside down, I wonder if the company knows what it is doing …
Odd signs in your local station? Leave us a comment and tell us about them!
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