© John Vink / Magnum Photos

 

March 8th is International Women’s Day…

Here is to the Cambodian grassroots activist women, those who are rattling at the locks of power…

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/10/2013: Protesters from communities which were evicted or which are under threat of being evicted in front of a police blockade preventing them from reaching the Municipality building when celebrating World Habitat Day.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/10/2013: Protesters from communities which were evicted or which are under threat of being evicted in front of a police blockade preventing them from reaching the Municipality building when celebrating World Habitat Day.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/06/2013: Tep Vanny, Community Representative, and members of the Boeung Kak Lake community are being pushed back by riot police when demonstrating for the release of Yorm Bopha, land issues activist, condemned to 2 years of imprisonment for allegedly having assaulted and injured moto taxi drivers, Amnesty International Prisoner of Conscience, in front of the Royal Palace on the Queen Mother's birthday.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/06/2013: Tep Vanny, Community Representative, and members of the Boeung Kak Lake community are being pushed back by riot police when demonstrating for the release of Yorm Bopha, land issues activist, condemned to 2 years of imprisonment for allegedly having assaulted and injured moto taxi drivers, Amnesty International Prisoner of Conscience, in front of the Royal Palace on the Queen Mother's birthday.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 16/01/2014: Tep Vanny, Land Rights Activist and Boeung Kak lake representative, on the second day of a ceremony organised by the Boeung Kak lake community with over 200 monks to commemorate 4 garment workers who were killed during the violent military crackdown of January 3rd on striking workers.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 16/01/2014: Tep Vanny, Land Rights Activist and Boeung Kak lake representative, on the second day of a ceremony organised by the Boeung Kak lake community with over 200 monks to commemorate 4 garment workers who were killed during the violent military crackdown of January 3rd on striking workers.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh 28/03/2014: Tep Vanny, land rights activist, together with various communities from Phnom Penh pray in front of the Royal Palace, requesting the liberation of 21 people jailed during the violent crackdown on striking workers from January 2nd and 3rd.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh 28/03/2014: Tep Vanny, land rights activist, together with various communities from Phnom Penh pray in front of the Royal Palace, requesting the liberation of 21 people jailed during the violent crackdown on striking workers from January 2nd and 3rd.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh 4/04/2014: Yorm Bopha, land rights activist, being contained by riot police when supporters of Vorn Pov, union leader jailed during the early january crackdown by the army of a worker's strike, demonstrate at the municipal court during a bail request hearing.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh 4/04/2014: Yorm Bopha, land rights activist, being contained by riot police when supporters of Vorn Pov, union leader jailed during the early january crackdown by the army of a worker's strike, demonstrate at the municipal court during a bail request hearing.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 20/05/2014: Tep Vanny, land rights activist, at a demonstration with dead chicken used for a cursing ceremony near the Phnom Penh Municipality Court during the trial of 23 workers and union leaders arrested during the violent crackdown on striking workers which resulted in 6 strikers killed on January 3rd.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 20/05/2014: Tep Vanny, land rights activist, at a demonstration with dead chicken used for a cursing ceremony near the Phnom Penh Municipality Court during the trial of 23 workers and union leaders arrested during the violent crackdown on striking workers which resulted in 6 strikers killed on January 3rd.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 20/05/2014: Yorm Bopha, land rights activist and former Amnesty International Prisoner of Conscience, at a demonstration near the Phnom Penh Municipality Court during the trial of 23 workers and union leaders arrested during the violent crackdown on striking workers which resulted in 6 strikers killed on January 3rd.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 20/05/2014: Yorm Bopha, land rights activist and former Amnesty International Prisoner of Conscience, at a demonstration near the Phnom Penh Municipality Court during the trial of 23 workers and union leaders arrested during the violent crackdown on striking workers which resulted in 6 strikers killed on January 3rd.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 22/05/2014: 'Mamy' and Yorm Bopha, land rights activists from the Boeung Kak lake community, protest in front of the police barricade sealing off the access to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on the 5th day of a trial for 23 workers, activists and union leaders arrested during the military crackdown on striking workers on January 2nd and 3rd.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 22/05/2014: 'Mamy' and Yorm Bopha, land rights activists from the Boeung Kak lake community, protest in front of the police barricade sealing off the access to the Phnom Penh Municipal Court on the 5th day of a trial for 23 workers, activists and union leaders arrested during the military crackdown on striking workers on January 2nd and 3rd.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 3/02/2014: Tep Vanny, Land Rights Activist and other Boeung Kak lake representatives organise a press conference about the land issue they have since 2007, when a development company was granted a 99-year concession to Boeung Kak lake and evicted 3000 families in the process.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 3/02/2014: Tep Vanny, Land Rights Activist and other Boeung Kak lake representatives organise a press conference about the land issue they have since 2007, when a development company was granted a 99-year concession to Boeung Kak lake and evicted 3000 families in the process.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh 5/03/2014: Members from the former Boeung Kak Lake are arrested in front of City Hall while waiting for a group of land rights activists who plan to deliver an invitation to a ceremony for Women's Day.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh 5/03/2014: Members from the former Boeung Kak Lake are arrested in front of City Hall while waiting for a group of land rights activists who plan to deliver an invitation to a ceremony for Women's Day.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh 27/03/2014: Yorm Bopha, land rights activist, and evicted communities from Boeung Kak, Borei Keila and Thmor Koul hold a sit-in in front of the E.U. delegation in Phnom Penh to hand over a petition.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh 27/03/2014: Yorm Bopha, land rights activist, and evicted communities from Boeung Kak, Borei Keila and Thmor Koul hold a sit-in in front of the E.U. delegation in Phnom Penh to hand over a petition.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 7/07/2014: Tep Vanny, land rights activist, addressing Boeung Kak lake residents, supported by other communities, demonstrating in front of the Anti Corruption Unit to demand a resolution to their land issue, an investigation on Lao Mengkhim, owner of the company which evicted 3000 families from Boeung Kak lake, Kep Chuktema, former Phnom Penh Governor, and Pa Socheatvong, leader of the Phnom Penh Security Guards.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 7/07/2014: Tep Vanny, land rights activist, addressing Boeung Kak lake residents, supported by other communities, demonstrating in front of the Anti Corruption Unit to demand a resolution to their land issue, an investigation on Lao Mengkhim, owner of the company which evicted 3000 families from Boeung Kak lake, Kep Chuktema, former Phnom Penh Governor, and Pa Socheatvong, leader of the Phnom Penh Security Guards.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 7/07/2014: Chan Puthisak, land rights activist who spent several month in jail after the military crackdown on striking workers, Tep Vanny, land rights activist, and Boeung Kak lake residents, supported by other communities, demonstrating in front of the Anti Corruption Unit to demand a resolution to their land issue, an investigation on Lao Mengkhim, owner of the company which evicted 3000 families from Boeung Kak lake, Kep Chuktema, former Phnom Penh Governor, and Pa Socheatvong, leader of the Phnom Penh Security Guards.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 7/07/2014: Chan Puthisak, land rights activist who spent several month in jail after the military crackdown on striking workers, Tep Vanny, land rights activist, and Boeung Kak lake residents, supported by other communities, demonstrating in front of the Anti Corruption Unit to demand a resolution to their land issue, an investigation on Lao Mengkhim, owner of the company which evicted 3000 families from Boeung Kak lake, Kep Chuktema, former Phnom Penh Governor, and Pa Socheatvong, leader of the Phnom Penh Security Guards.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 27/08/2014: Yorm Bopha, land rights activist, and former residents of Boeung Kak, supported by members of the evicted Borei Keila community are prevented from reaching the National Assembly by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 27/08/2014: Yorm Bopha, land rights activist, and former residents of Boeung Kak, supported by members of the evicted Borei Keila community are prevented from reaching the National Assembly by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 29/09/2014: Boeung Kak lake residents with rice wasted by floodwater during a protest in front of City Hall. 24 hours after a heavy rainfall, the area of Boeung Kak lake was still flooded. These floods occur more frequently and are more severe since a developlment company, having obtained a 99 year lease from the municipality in 2007, filled the lake with sand.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 29/09/2014: Boeung Kak lake residents with rice wasted by floodwater during a protest in front of City Hall. 24 hours after a heavy rainfall, the area of Boeung Kak lake was still flooded. These floods occur more frequently and are more severe since a developlment company, having obtained a 99 year lease from the municipality in 2007, filled the lake with sand.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 8/03/2014: Members from Boeung Kak lake and Borei Keila, joined by monks from the Independent Monk Network for Social Justice (IMNSJ) are prevented by riot police to march to the Ministry of Women's Affairs to deliver a petition on International Women's Day.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 8/03/2014: Members from Boeung Kak lake and Borei Keila, joined by monks from the Independent Monk Network for Social Justice (IMNSJ) are prevented by riot police to march to the Ministry of Women's Affairs to deliver a petition on International Women's Day.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 8/03/2014: Members from Boeung Kak lake and Borei Keila, joined by monks from the Independent Monk Network for Social Justice (IMNSJ) are prevented by riot police to march to the Ministry of Women's Affairs to deliver a petition on International Women's Day.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 8/03/2014: Members from Boeung Kak lake and Borei Keila, joined by monks from the Independent Monk Network for Social Justice (IMNSJ) are prevented by riot police to march to the Ministry of Women's Affairs to deliver a petition on International Women's Day.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 8/03/2014: Nget Khun ('Mamy'), land rights activist and members from Boeung Kak lake and Borei Keila, joined by monks from the Independent Monk Network for Social Justice (IMNSJ) are prevented by riot police to march to the Ministry of Women's Affairs to deliver a petition on International Women's Day.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 8/03/2014: Nget Khun ('Mamy'), land rights activist and members from Boeung Kak lake and Borei Keila, joined by monks from the Independent Monk Network for Social Justice (IMNSJ) are prevented by riot police to march to the Ministry of Women's Affairs to deliver a petition on International Women's Day.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 8/03/2014: Tep Vanny, land rights activist, and members from Boeung Kak lake and Borei Keila, joined by monks from the Independent Monk Network for Social Justice (IMNSJ) are prevented by riot police to march to the Ministry of Women's Affairs to deliver a petition on International Women's Day.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 8/03/2014: Tep Vanny, land rights activist, and members from Boeung Kak lake and Borei Keila, joined by monks from the Independent Monk Network for Social Justice (IMNSJ) are prevented by riot police to march to the Ministry of Women's Affairs to deliver a petition on International Women's Day.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/07/2014: Tep Vanny, land rights activist, and about 200 members from the Khmer Youth Movement, joined by other civil society groups, demonstrating near the Vietnamese embassy to protest what they consider the annexation of Kampuchea Krom by Vietnam.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/07/2014: Tep Vanny, land rights activist, and about 200 members from the Khmer Youth Movement, joined by other civil society groups, demonstrating near the Vietnamese embassy to protest what they consider the annexation of Kampuchea Krom by Vietnam.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 29/08/2014: Police arresting Tep Vanny and 3 land rights activists from Boeung Kak lake who came to support villagers from Banteay Meanchey, Svay Rieng and Pailin entangled in land issues and who were hosted at the Wat Chas pagoda in the capital. They were prevented to leave the pagoda by security forces and riot police units when they tried to march to Prime Minister Hun Sen's house.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 29/08/2014: Police arresting Tep Vanny and 3 land rights activists from Boeung Kak lake who came to support villagers from Banteay Meanchey, Svay Rieng and Pailin entangled in land issues and who were hosted at the Wat Chas pagoda in the capital. They were prevented to leave the pagoda by security forces and riot police units when they tried to march to Prime Minister Hun Sen's house.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 14/11/2014: Following a wave of arrests and jail sentences of activist monks and land rights activists, some 800 people gathered in front of the National Assembly to request the release of those sentenced to jail.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 14/11/2014: Following a wave of arrests and jail sentences of activist monks and land rights activists, some 800 people gathered in front of the National Assembly to request the release of those sentenced to jail.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 22/01/2015: Phan Chunreth, a land rights activists who was arrested mid-november during a land issue protest and sentenced to 1 year in jail greets supporters gathered outside the Appeals Court.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 22/01/2015: Phan Chunreth, a land rights activists who was arrested mid-november during a land issue protest and sentenced to 1 year in jail greets supporters gathered outside the Appeals Court.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 22/01/2015: Po Chorvy, land rights activist who was arrested mid-november during a land issue protest and sentenced to 1 year in jail greets supporters ggathered outside the Appeals Court.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 22/01/2015: Po Chorvy, land rights activist who was arrested mid-november during a land issue protest and sentenced to 1 year in jail greets supporters ggathered outside the Appeals Court.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 22/01/2015: Tep Vanny, land rights activist who was arrested mid-november during a land issue protest and sentenced to 1 year in jail at the Appeals Court.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 22/01/2015: Tep Vanny, land rights activist who was arrested mid-november during a land issue protest and sentenced to 1 year in jail at the Appeals Court.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 24/01/2015: Tep Vanny and Kong Chantha, two of the land rights activists, arrested early November during a protest related to a land issue, being brought back to Prey Sar prison after having appeared in front of the Appeals Court to see their 1 year sentence upheld, reduced to 10 months for Kong Chantha.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 24/01/2015: Tep Vanny and Kong Chantha, two of the land rights activists, arrested early November during a protest related to a land issue, being brought back to Prey Sar prison after having appeared in front of the Appeals Court to see their 1 year sentence upheld, reduced to 10 months for Kong Chantha.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 24/01/2015: Nget Khun, one of the land rights activists arrested early November during a protest related to a land issue, in the van which will take her back to Prey Sar prison after having appeared in front of the Appeals Court to see their sentence upheld, but reduced to 6 months instead of 1 year.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 24/01/2015: Nget Khun, one of the land rights activists arrested early November during a protest related to a land issue, in the van which will take her back to Prey Sar prison after having appeared in front of the Appeals Court to see their sentence upheld, but reduced to 6 months instead of 1 year.

One month in Brussels reveals never edited and never scanned photographs. Here is a set of 20 better ones.

And in light of the recent World Press controversy, I herewith certify I am old fashioned when it comes to setting up or staging photographs: I didn’t do it and I still don’t…

BELGIUM. Brussels. 10/11/1979: Mr. Muscle contest.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 10/11/1979: Mr. Muscle contest.

BELGIUM. St Genesius Rhode. 19/09/1979: Technical support team for an amateur race ahead of the arrival of Paris-Brussels bicycle race.

BELGIUM. St Genesius Rhode. 19/09/1979: Technical support team for an amateur race ahead of the arrival of Paris-Brussels bicycle race.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 24/07/1979: Shop.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 24/07/1979: Shop.

BELGIUM, Blankenberge. 29/07/1979:

BELGIUM, Blankenberge. 29/07/1979:

BELGIUM, Brussels. 2/09/1979: Parade.

BELGIUM, Brussels. 2/09/1979: Parade.

BELGIUM. Wieze. 14/10/1979: Majorettes at beer festival.

BELGIUM. Wieze. 14/10/1979: Majorettes at beer festival.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 24/12/1979: In a night club on Christmas Eve.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 24/12/1979: In a night club on Christmas Eve.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 24/12/1979: Dancing on Christmas Eve.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 24/12/1979: Dancing on Christmas Eve.

BELGIUM. Beloeuil. 13/07/1980: Rainy parade.

BELGIUM. Beloeuil. 13/07/1980: Rainy parade.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 13/09/1980: Giant's procession.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 13/09/1980: Giant's procession.

BELGIUM, Awans (Liège). 4/10/1980: Dog races.

BELGIUM, Awans (Liège). 4/10/1980: Dog races.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 06/09/1981: Folk group at Meiboom street festival.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 06/09/1981: Folk group at Meiboom street festival.

BELGIUM, Brussels. 24/03/1984: TV shop.

BELGIUM, Brussels. 24/03/1984: TV shop.

BELGIUM, Antwerpen. 8/04/1984: Docker.

BELGIUM, Antwerpen. 8/04/1984: Docker.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 28/09/1984: Police arresting activist demonstrating against the presence of Mr Jean-Marie Le Pen, leader of the right-wing Front National on a support visit to a belgian right-wing party.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 28/09/1984: Police arresting activist demonstrating against the presence of Mr Jean-Marie Le Pen, leader of the right-wing Front National on a support visit to a belgian right-wing party.

BELGIUM, Kapelle Op Den Bos. 7/10/1985: Cyclo cross race.

BELGIUM, Kapelle Op Den Bos. 7/10/1985: Cyclo cross race.

BELGIUM, Gent. 23/11/1984: 'Zes Daagse' indoor bicycle race.

BELGIUM, Gent. 23/11/1984: 'Zes Daagse' indoor bicycle race.

BELGIUM. Leuven. 17/05/1985: Flemish nationalist requesting amnesty for WW11 collaboration, waiting for the arrival of Pope John Paul II.

BELGIUM. Leuven. 17/05/1985: Flemish nationalist requesting amnesty for WW11 collaboration, waiting for the arrival of Pope John Paul II.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 21/05/85. Waiting for the arrival of Pope John Paul II.

BELGIUM. Brussels. 21/05/85. Waiting for the arrival of Pope John Paul II.

BELGIUM, Brussels. 20/09/1985: Going to a friend's wedding.

BELGIUM, Brussels. 20/09/1985: Going to a friend's wedding.

Traces of the carnival celebrations in Binche, a former industrial region of Belgium, can be traced back to the 14th century. It is part of the continent-wide pagan-related rites celebrating the end of winter. The festival was recognised by UNESCO as an ‘Oral and Immaterial Patrimony of Humanity’ in 2003. But to the inhabitants of the small city of Binche it is much more than that: the three days of Mardi Gras celebrations and also the rituals in the preceding weeks of actual Mardi Gras are the expression of an intense sense of belonging to a community, creating very strong social bonds. The main character around which the festival evolves is the ‘Gille de Binche’. Probably created around the end of the 18th century the Gille, organised in various brotherhoods, obey very strict rules during carnival: they can only dress up as a Gille, with the ostrich feather hat, the straw-stuffed costume, the bundle of twigs to ward off evil winter spirits (which is also thrown to relatives or friends in the public as a greeting), and the wooden clogs during the day of Mardi Gras, they should at all times be accompanied by a drum, should never be seen sitting in public. The hardest requisite in a context of free flowing alcohol during the carnival days is probably not being seen drunk. Being a Gille is an honour but comes at a price, and many members go through severe financial sacrifice to pay for the rent of the costume (300€ for the ostrich hat), buy the oranges which will be thrown to the public as a sign of good luck (throwing them back to the Gille is a grave offence) and the bottles of champagne and other alcoholic beverages consumed during the festive days.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gille de Binche' at the start of the final parade on Mardi Gras, donning a hat with ostrich feathers, wearing a costume stuffed with straw and with wooden clogs on his feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gille de Binche' at the start of the final parade on Mardi Gras, donning a hat with ostrich feathers, wearing a costume stuffed with straw and with wooden clogs on his feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' dancing in front of their drummers during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' dancing in front of their drummers during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' dancing in front of their drummers during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' dancing in front of their drummers during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Drummer passing in front of public urinal after the first round of the 'Gilles de Binche' through the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Drummer passing in front of public urinal after the first round of the 'Gilles de Binche' through the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Confetti strewn on the street during the first round of the 'Gilles de Binche' through the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Confetti strewn on the street during the first round of the 'Gilles de Binche' through the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' dancing in front of their drummers during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' dancing in front of their drummers during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: A young 'Gille de Binche' going home, accompanied by hiss drummer after the first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: A young 'Gille de Binche' going home, accompanied by hiss drummer after the first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' dancing in front of their drummers on the 'Grand Place' before going inside city hall to be greeted by the mayor during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' dancing in front of their drummers on the 'Grand Place' before going inside city hall to be greeted by the mayor during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Covered with confetti when the 'Gilles de Binche' have their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Covered with confetti when the 'Gilles de Binche' have their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Covered with confetti when the 'Gilles de Binche' have their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Covered with confetti when the 'Gilles de Binche' have their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' leaving city hall after having been greeted by the mayor during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' leaving city hall after having been greeted by the mayor during their first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' going home, accompanied by their drummer after the first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' going home, accompanied by their drummer after the first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' going home, accompanied by their drummer after the first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gilles de Binche' going home, accompanied by their drummer after the first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Harlequins' after the first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Harlequins' after the first round of the city in the morning on Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' will wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gille de Binche' during the final parade on Mardi Gras, donning a hat with ostrich feathers, wearing a costume stuffed with straw and with wooden clogs on his feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gille de Binche' during the final parade on Mardi Gras, donning a hat with ostrich feathers, wearing a costume stuffed with straw and with wooden clogs on his feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Spectator, protected by wired fence to ward off oranges thrown by the 'Gilles de Binche' watches the start of the final parade on Mardi Gras.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Spectator, protected by wired fence to ward off oranges thrown by the 'Gilles de Binche' watches the start of the final parade on Mardi Gras.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gille de Binche' at the start of the final parade on Mardi Gras, donning a hat with ostrich feathers, wearing a costume stuffed with straw and with wooden clogs on his feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gille de Binche' at the start of the final parade on Mardi Gras, donning a hat with ostrich feathers, wearing a costume stuffed with straw and with wooden clogs on his feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gille de Binche' during the final parade on Mardi Gras, asking hiss helper to fill hiss basket with oranges wich will be thrown to spectators. 'Gilles de Binche' wear a hat with ostrich feathers, a costume stuffed with straw and have wooden clogs on his feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gille de Binche' during the final parade on Mardi Gras, asking hiss helper to fill hiss basket with oranges wich will be thrown to spectators. 'Gilles de Binche' wear a hat with ostrich feathers, a costume stuffed with straw and have wooden clogs on his feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: A young 'Gille de Binche' during the final parade on Mardi Gras, throws oranges to the public. Older 'Gilles de Binche 'are wearing a hat with ostrich feathers, a costume stuffed with straw and have wooden clogs on their feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: A young 'Gille de Binche' during the final parade on Mardi Gras, throws oranges to the public. Older 'Gilles de Binche 'are wearing a hat with ostrich feathers, a costume stuffed with straw and have wooden clogs on their feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gille de Binche' during the final parade on Mardi Gras, donning a hat with ostrich feathers, wearing a costume stuffed with straw and with wooden clogs on his feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: 'Gille de Binche' during the final parade on Mardi Gras, donning a hat with ostrich feathers, wearing a costume stuffed with straw and with wooden clogs on his feet. A 'Gille' is not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying him.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Public trying to catch oranges thrown by 'Gilles de Binche' during Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Public trying to catch oranges thrown by 'Gilles de Binche' during Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Public trying to catch oranges thrown by 'Gilles de Binche' during Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Public trying to catch oranges thrown by 'Gilles de Binche' during Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: A young 'Pierrot' at the 'Grand Place' during the final parade on Mardi Gras. Besides the 'Gilles de Binche' wearing a hat with ostrich feathers, a costume stuffed with straw and wooden clogs on their feet, there are three more smaller groups: the 'Harlequins', the 'Pierrots' and the 'Paysans'. Like the 'Gilles' they are not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying them.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: A young 'Pierrot' at the 'Grand Place' during the final parade on Mardi Gras. Besides the 'Gilles de Binche' wearing a hat with ostrich feathers, a costume stuffed with straw and wooden clogs on their feet, there are three more smaller groups: the 'Harlequins', the 'Pierrots' and the 'Paysans'. Like the 'Gilles' they are not allowed to walk in the street without a drummer accompanying them.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Musicians accompanying 'Gilles de Binche' at the 'Grand Place' during the final parade on Mardi Gras.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Musicians accompanying 'Gilles de Binche' at the 'Grand Place' during the final parade on Mardi Gras.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Oranges thrown by the 'Gilles de Binche' during the last parade of Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 17/02/2015: Oranges thrown by the 'Gilles de Binche' during the last parade of Mardi Gras, the day the 'Gilles de Binche' wear their ostrich feather hat to celebrate carnival.

This is just the start… People are getting into the mood, getting ready for the climax of this next tuesday when the ‘Gilles de Binche’ will beat the rhythm of the drums with their wooden clogs, their traditional costume stuffed with straw and wearing their ostrich feather hats.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Musicians waiting in a café for the start of the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Musicians waiting in a café for the start of the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Eating Belgian fries on the first day of carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Eating Belgian fries on the first day of carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Musicians waiting in a café for the start of the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Musicians waiting in a café for the start of the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Musicians waiting in a café for the start of the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Musicians waiting in a café for the start of the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Musicians waiting for the start of the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Musicians waiting for the start of the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Exploded firework signaling the start of the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Exploded firework signaling the start of the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Brass instruments covered with cloth to prevent oranges, thrown by the Gilles de Binche, to clog the tube on the first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Brass instruments covered with cloth to prevent oranges, thrown by the Gilles de Binche, to clog the tube on the first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Covered in confetti on the first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Covered in confetti on the first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Crushed plastic beercups during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Crushed plastic beercups during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Taking a selfie during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Taking a selfie during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Beer cans delivery during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Beer cans delivery during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Urinal during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Urinal during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Youth gathered in a bar during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Youth gathered in a bar during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Flower hat during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Flower hat during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Parents waiting for the return of their children taking part in the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Parents waiting for the return of their children taking part in the parade during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: First day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Parade during the first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Parade during the first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Urinal during first day of carnival.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 15/02/2015: Urinal during first day of carnival.

In the ongoing quest of finding out if Belgium is still around or still makes sense, this month of February I will focus on a series of carnivals in and around Binche. Here is a sample of carnival photographs in Belgium during bygone years.

BELGIUM. Binche. 5/3/1971. Carnaval de Binche.

BELGIUM. Binche. 5/3/1971. Carnaval de Binche.

BELGIUM. Binche. 5/03/1971: Binche carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche. 5/03/1971: Binche carnival.

BELGIUM. Aalst. 17/02/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Aalst. 17/02/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Aalst. 17/02/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Aalst. 17/02/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Gilles de Binche during carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Gilles de Binche during carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Gilles de Binche during carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Gilles de Binche during carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Gilles de Binche pissing during carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Gilles de Binche pissing during carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Gilles de Binche during carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 19/02/1980: Gilles de Binche during carnival

BELGIUM. Morlanwelz. 24/02/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Morlanwelz. 24/02/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Morlanwelz. 24/02/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Morlanwelz. 24/02/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Leuven. 01/03/1980: Participants at carnival.

BELGIUM. Leuven. 01/03/1980: Participants at carnival.

BELGIUM. Oostende (West Vlaanderen). 2/03/1980

BELGIUM. Oostende (West Vlaanderen). 2/03/1980

BELGIUM. Oostende (West Vlaanderen). 2/03/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Oostende (West Vlaanderen). 2/03/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Oostende (West Vlaanderen). 2/03/1980

BELGIUM. Oostende (West Vlaanderen). 2/03/1980

BELGIUM. Stavelot. 16/03/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Stavelot. 16/03/1980: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Stavelot. 06/03/1980: Blanc-Moussis during carnival.

BELGIUM. Stavelot. 06/03/1980: Blanc-Moussis during carnival.

BELGIUM. Carrières. 28/03/82: Crowd during annual carnival.

BELGIUM. Carrières. 28/03/82: Crowd during annual carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 04/03/1984: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 04/03/1984: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche. 04/03/1984: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche. 04/03/1984: Carnival.

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 04/03/1984: Carnival

BELGIUM. Binche (Hainaut). 04/03/1984: Carnival

Second day of carnival related events. This time in Binche, the cradle of carnival for the French-speaking part of Belgium. The carnival festivities in Binche, dating back hundreds of years, were rightfully registered as a “Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity” by UNESCO in 2003. The whole city vibrates for months preceding the festival, preparing for the 3-day long climax starting next sunday and ending on mardi-gras with a spectacular parade.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Child posing in a cutout during last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

BELGIUM, Binche (Hainaut). 8/02/2015: Child posing in a cutout during last 'Soumonces', one week before the actual carnival, when the brotherhoods follow the drums, dressed in fantasy costumes.

In the ongoing quest of finding out if Belgium is still around or still makes sense, this month of February will focus on a series of carnivals in and around Binche. On Saturday the various brotherhoods and carnival associations were out in the streets of La Louvière for the ‘Soumonces en musique’.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: Drum entering a cafe. The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: Drum entering a cafe. The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: Confetti thrown by child. The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: Confetti thrown by child. The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: Man covered with spray foam. The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: Man covered with spray foam. The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: Spilled beer on the street. The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: Spilled beer on the street. The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: Empty shop. The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

BELGIUM, La Louvière (Hainaut). 7/02/2015: Empty shop. The 'Soumonces en musique' take place a few weeks before the actual carnival. The various brotherhoods, dressed with a blue peasants tunic and wearing wooden clogs, dance to the music going from one café to another, holding a handful of twigs.

More on ‘This is not Belgium’. See HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE, HERE or HERE

Now this is the REAL thing: the hard training at the grounds of the ‘brodal serei’ boxers from the RCAF trained by former World Champion E’Phoutang, the incessant kicks with the knees, the elbows, the sweat, the sighs and screams, the pain, the bruised muscles, the smell of rotting boxing gloves. All things which inspired Emmanuèle Phuon, a Brussels based choreographer with Cambodian roots, to create a contemporary dance piece based on ‘brodal serei’, the Cambodian version of kickboxing. More HERE. More on Emmanuèle Phuon HERE

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: former World Champion E'Phoutang on the training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: former World Champion E'Phoutang on the training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 3/02/2015: Training grounds of the 'brodal serei' boxers from the RCAF (Royal Cambodian Armed Forces), trained by former world champion E'Phoutang.