Everything is a travel experience when you are living overseas. It is interesting how some things are so much cheaper than you are use to, while others are incredibly expensive. We went to our local chocolatetier, Leonidas, and bought four exquisite Belgian chocolates to have for desert. We couldn’t believe our ears when she asked for only 94 cents in exchange, and in fact she had to show us the receipt before we understood. Divine bread and gourmet cheeses are available far cheaper than you could get anywhere in Australia or America.
Other things, by converse, are far more expensive. A roll of 10 garbage bags? €20. Actually, it is a very clever system. Instead of paying a fixed fee for the service of garbage collection, in Belgium households pay instead a fee for brown garbage bags and collection is free. It is a very clever use of the financial incentive - in Australia you pay the same regardless of how much garbage you produce, while in Belgium if you halve the number of garbage bags you produce you halve the cost of garbage disposal. It also encourages recycling, as plastic bottles can be put out in a cheaper blue garbage bag, so separating out recycling saves significant amounts of money. Just woe betide anyone who attempts to dispose of regular garbage in a blue bag!