Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Travel Series: SWITZERLAND

Aaand the travel saga continues...

From London, Dad and I headed to Basel, Switzerland, via bus. We got a ferry from Dover across the English Channel to Calais, where we re-boarded our bus and trekked across France. This was my first time stepping foot in France, and was naturally exciting. We didn't see much of France at this point, though (that was to come later). I did manage to admire French magazines like Vogue, and gaze up at a very blue French sky. At this point I was pretty excited, despite the fact that frustrations were increasing between Dad and I at this point.

In Switzerland, I immediately started noticing things, like that people said "twenty thirty" instead of "eight-thirty", in terms of times on the clock. Also, I noticed lots of cyclists. And lots of roadworks! By the time we got to Basel, I was getting more and more homesick, as evidenced by this travel journal entry:

I must be entirely honest, I want to go home. I wouldn't care if we missed India & Seoul & stuff. I hate the idea of heading for a country where I'm homeless & vulnerable & don't speak the language. I miss my mummy.

Doc Martens and some Alps.

A rainy suburban street - with bikes! 

Switzerland gives good lake.

That was actually quite mild compared to some of what I was ranting about. ;) Suffice it to say I was having more and more 'irate' moments in the company of my infamous father, and stress was high also because I had by this point spent all my money. I also ranted to Mum in a letter about how everywhere in Europe, smoking was still allowed in public places. I speculated that I probably already had lung cancer from all the second-hand smoke.

Gorgeous Switzerland.
One of many beautiful Swiss views.

The night we reached Basel, we got to the airport and slept there overnight so we could get our hire car in the morning. But when I say "slept there", I mean that we spent the night out on the grass, by some bushes. When I awoke in the morning, the first thing I noticed was a plane roaring by overhead. The second was the people at the airport windows, staring out. They were probably watching planes come and go, but seventeen-year-old me was convinced there could only be one spectacle out on the grass that morning - the two homeless bums camped out there.

A view I got from sitting on top of a massive rock
(next to the glacier).
Love this pic, 'cause you can see Dad
heading down onto the glacier - no
safety gear or ANYTHING. Yep, he's nuts.

That morning we finally got our hire car, and headed back out on the road. From Basel we drove through Switzerland and saw some truly beautiful landscapes. We spent a night in the Italian region of Switzerland in a tiny little town, which I believe was called Gordela. Here we hung out with Dad's girlfriend's extended family, and in town saw a beautiful old castle. From here we drove on, down into Italy, but I'll talk about that next time.

P.S. I hit 50k with my BuNo novel! Now to finish it...


  1. My urologist moved to Switzerland. It sounds wonderful.

  2. I've been kind of offline for a while, so I've missed your traveling series--but I'm curious enough about the pairing of "infamous" and "dad" to go search your archives for other posts :D Congrats on hitting 50K! That's a big deal all right! I'm off to Holland tomorrow, but I'll do my best to stay on top of your posts from now on.

  3. You guys are fearless travelers! My husband and I think we are brave when we head out with all the reservations lined up and the GPS programmed!

  4. If I go to a country where there's loads of public smoking. I'm spending loads of time inside. Sorry but all my grandparents got cancer and two died from it. No thanks. Your Travel series is great and Liz is right about you guys being fearless (even if you wanted your mummy) travelers.

  5. Oh gosh... sounds amazing and exhausting! But I LOVE the pics. Now I have the travel bug...

    And WOW... keep pushing those words out! You're doing amazing!

  6. 50K? You go girl!
    Your dad sounds like quite the adventurous type!

  7. I was afraid just looking at the pic of your dad. I'm a total chicken!

    Congrats on the 50K, that's awesome! :)

  8. Ah, military time. I've always thought saying twenty-thirty or 1300 hours was cooler than ordinary time. In my journals for years I time-stamped my entries that way. :)

  9. That sounds like an amazing, exhausting, and challenging adventure! I can relate to wanting to come home when in a foreign country - it's exciting, but sometimes it seems like a bit of "normal life" comfort calls to me when I'm traveling.

    I love the pictures!

  10. What a wonderful adventure you had! I love reading about other people's trips. Sadly, this is the first year in a long time I don't have any stories share on my blog. :(

  11. I feel like I'm reliving my trip to England, France, Switzerland and Italy by reading your post. I had such good memories of that trip. I also remember almost not being able to get back into France because my visa had expired. Long story. Good times. :)

  12. You really were a trouper. I went on a 21 day trip to Europe in college (mostly Germany but also hit Austria, western France, Switzerland and Czech.). We stayed in youth hostels and rode on a bus we chartered and I was still pretty cranky. I am not much of a traveler. My family camped a lot when I was growing up and I HATE camping so sleeping outside like you did in high school? That would not have happened. Good for you! Cheers!


Thanks for your words, me hearties! and don't forget to leave a link to your blog somewhere I can find it!