I have often written about certain oddities that seem to abound in Belgium from door numbers to door bells to lamp posts. And yet, life in the country-that-still-has-no-government is far from being one continuous freak-fest.
One interesting improvement that I noticed the other day is that the announcements at Brussels Gare Du Midi are now being repeated in English. Given that this station welcomes passengers fresh off the Eurostar, it is a small customer-service step that is long overdue. I’m sure that the clumps of befuddled tourists will no longer stare blankly at the tannoy system as rather than French and Flemish, they now have a greater change of understanding instructions.
Of course, this is a relative point because having information piped to you in a language you can understand does not mean that the message will make sense. A few days ago, I was in the station, keeping my eye out for pickpockets when someone with a voice like a less-cheerful Darth Vader started briefing us with a bewildering set of updates. The following all happened within five to ten minutes of one another:
“The train arriving on platform 5 is arriving on platform 3.
The train arriving on platform 4 is arriving on platform 18.
The train arriving on platform 18 is arriving on platform 6.
The train arriving on platform 3 is arriving on platform 11.
I repeat, the train …”
So, full marks for trying but a little more effort is needed …
Heard any confusing announcements recently? Leave us a comment and tell us about it!
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- Access Control
- Looks Can Be Deceiving
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