I've never really been a fan of the Monarchial system but having Experienced Belgium as I have over the years and though I now reside under Ohio skies what I find is that I rather miss the Monarchs of Belgium - their palaces and understated celebrity. HRH Paola and Albert as seen from this here corner of my new world from Albert Avenue, Mifflinville, Ohio, USA are a nostalgic memory for me. Indeed from these parts of Ghettoville where there is a loss of human dignity and civilization I begin to wonder if Monarchial role models such as the understated Belgian model aren't lacking in these parts. I miss seeing HRH The Queen Mother Fabiola (with that fab name and once upon a time and timeless chic-coif) being driven about old Bru-town - over-taking me as I rode a rickety Amstel Ludo bicycle past the town house palace. The accessibility of that Royal Family is what I miss. Hollywood or the English Royals just can't come down to that level - especially the QE II who must be stiffly re-upholstered every time she ventures out into her realm - set afloat across her subjects for the media to devour like a launching of some fantastic ocean liner. But the Belgian Royals are just people like you and me and not neccessarily such Vampires as their across the channel mis-behaving cousins or far away Hollywood cardboards princes and princess. I still maintain keeping Monarchs is akin to having the First Family on Welfare there to take the biggest Welfare cheques first. It is just from this vantage point from a distant point on the globe in the social and human squallor of the civilized decay of Ghettoville and the lives trapped here it is very much aparant that there might be perhaps a very neccessary function of a Royal head of state. If only these Libertine Royals like their ancestors were still opening Hospitals and Schools and Refuge centers from poverty in addition to providing a human sense of identity. Well certainly the Cheney/Bush II Junta and their kin are not rolemodels given their apparant greed and lack of ethics and their taste for overtly lying. From here on Koning Albertlaan - Avenue de la Roi Albert from my modest herenhuisje or maison du maitre (really an old wooden bungalow) I find I miss Belgium in ways I could never have imagined. I miss the pedestrian and urban fabric of old Bru-town - I miss watching that old place re-transform into a bicycle and walking city. But from my rooms and my Arabesque and mod Muslim stlyed way of life next to little Moghadishu I rather like all the greenery and the big blue sky and I relish in the certainty of summer. The certainty of summer which is not a guarantee in the southern low lands of northern europe other wise known as my other home Belgium. God I miss you - Belgium and that fantastic complicated and contradictory Brussels. I miss your Moroccan Community and all the vivacious and enthusiastic North African Belgians mixing up race and places and culture and histories and languages in one big Maroc Rai mix/melange of a social symphony - from a strange old city with a 1000 year history of blurred boundaries and cultures from old Brusselse to Bruxelioses now with an Arabian/North African flare - Ancient Catholic relics and New Islamic Centerpieces replete with Flemish dialected Dutch speakers and French and English and Arabic speaking new Brusselaars/Bruxelois - long live the Brussels Ket of new and old and don't forget your fantastic micro-melting pot beats anything American.