My Brush With Fame – Queen Elizabeth in Brussels

By - July 16, 2007 (Updated: November 28, 2014)

Sadly, I only had my camera phone. You’ll just have to trust me when I say she was in the black van.

Sometimes I forget that the city I visit on a weekly basis is a huge international, and very political, city. Sometimes, something unexpected happens to make me remember.

Last Thursday I went to the city, via train, to do some last minute shopping. As I emerged from Central Station, I found myself in the middle of a crowd of approximately 100 people, on the sidewalk. As I approached the street, I saw barricades and group of police officers.

Across the street, in front of Le Meriden hotel, I noticed a crowd of cameramen and photographers milling about in front of a red carpet. I’m not above hanging around to spy on famous people, so I thought I’d wait and see what all the fuss was about.

After about 10 minutes, the police blocked off all of the streets. A police helicopter circled overhead. Finally, someone emerged from the hotel. I was standing directly across the street from Queen Elizabeth of England – my Queen.

She got into a black Mercedes van, and while waving graciously to the crowd, she slowly drove up the street.

It’s not every city that you can have a brush with that kind of fame.

If you like this, you might like:

Alison Cornford-Matheson is a Canadian freelance writer and travel photographer and the founder of She is the author of The Foodie Guide to Brussels: Local Tips for Restaurants, Shops, Hotels, and Activities. Alison landed in Belgium in 2005 and, over the years, has become passionate about slow and sustainable travel, in Europe and beyond. She loves to discover hidden gems - be they museums, shops, restaurants, castles, gardens or landscapes, and share them through her words and photos. She has visited 45 countries and is currently slow travelling through North America in an RV, with her husband, Andrew, and two well-travelled cats. You can also follow her work on Google+
- 1 day ago


  1. Comment by christina

    christina July 24, 2007 at 17:41

    Ahh, I see you are another loyal subject. 🙂 I loved the colour of Her Majesty’s outfit.

  2. Comment by GuinnessGuy

    GuinnessGuy August 18, 2007 at 11:28

    Your “this” link is broken and I still don’t know who it was??

Comments are closed.

Go top