Ana Juan-Gomez

Travel

Maastricht

This morning, Bea and I woke up, went to LIDL (a supermarket), and prepared the most incredible brunch. This has become our little tradition every time we get together; no matter what country we happen to be in.

Soon after, we hopped on a train to Maastricht, Holland that only cost 10 euros round-trip. It was hard for me to believe that 30 minutes later, we were in another country!

Maastricht is beautiful. It was my first time in Holland and it has already become one of my favorite countries.  

oaming around the city, we ran into what looked like a cathedral on the exterior, but turned out to be a huge book store when we walked inside. I’d say it is definitely one of Maastricht’s hidden gems.

We later stopped for a coffee and some macaroons at a place called Piece of Cake.  I fell in love with this place right away. It’s branding could use a little work, but then again, it had such a quaint and magical appeal, that even the Comic Sans at the front door didn’t bother me. 

…I have a feeling this blog is going to turn into a food blog rather than a travel one.

On our way back to the station, this window stopped me in my tracks. Till then, I had seen plenty of incredible interior and fashion design, but no graphic design. As soon as I got home, I looked up the Creatieve Communicatie Studio, or SAUS. Unfortunately, everything I found about them on the Internet is in Dutch, but their website alone represents a lot of what I appreciate in good design: an overall clean aesthetic, simplicity, ingenuity, cohesion, etc. I don’t know Dutch, but I know what I like visually. As designers, we are visual storytellers. A successful design, apart from communicating an idea, is visually appealing (with or without a language). 

Watch this video to get a better idea of what SAUS is up to. 

That night, when we got back to Liege, I got together with some friends that were working on a group project.

Every student apartment I’ve been to lately, is like stepping into the French movie L’auberge Espagnol (about a French student that moves into an apartment in Barcelona with six other Erasmus students from around the world). There are so many young people living their own adventures, each with their own stories to tell. My friends worked on their project till about 12:30am, while I chatted with some of their roommates.

Just as a side note, I wanted to mention that when I was talking with the people in the house, someone literally said “wow you know a lot for an American.” I try not to take offense to that comment, but moments like these are huge reality checks. Sometimes I forget the negative image that Americans give off internationally. I don’t want to get too much into this subject, but I just find it unfortunate that people categorize others based on the country they grew up in.

Anyways, tomorrow we are off to Brussels for my last full day in Belgium. I can wait to see some more friends and visit an incredible city I've been hearing so much about!