As long as I can remember I have had an issue with Switzerland – or mainly swiss people. I kind of dislike them and their accent, which is a very stupid thing to say and I know it.
I guess it comes from having had a swiss boss when I worked in the Netherlands, who just was not a nice person.
Since my brother moved to Switzerland 3 years ago to study acting, Switzerland became an option, and with my travel project this year, I decided to give it a try and see for myself. I booked my tickets for the overnight train to Zurich and the continuing ticket to Bern and packed my bags.
The well needed afterwork drinks with my bestie took a little longer than expected and when the subway which would take me to the station was delayed, I got slightly stressed.
So when I finally made it to the train with only minutes to spare, breathing hard, and having started a sweat, I was looking forward to my comfy seat and a night of rest. Upon entering the carriage I was greeted by a shrill voice and a group of people standing in front of a 6 people cabin. I instinctively knew that was my cabin.
I bypassed the lady with the shrill voice and two other people, she had a discussion with, and entered the cabin which was already filled with a Russian family of three. My mood, which had not been good since missing the subway, went from grumpy to highly grumpy. Especially since the Russian daughter sat in the window opposite me and all plans of extending the two seats into a bed vaporized into thin air.
The lady with the shrill voice rambled on about something and I completely ignored her – which is usually not my way of treating people. She told us about going for a walk and when she came back after 15 minutes telling us she would sit somewhere else less crowded, the Russian girl and I shared an evil grin.
Being the ignorant person that I am, I claimed the seat next to mine as well, and soon folded myself into an “L” position, meaning my legs were on the floor, my head on my seat and my bum on the seat next to mine. The Russian father moved to my side of the isle, the mother lay over her two seats and the daughter just stayed upright. All in our positions, we dozed off.
Apart from my back killing me, I felt okay about this situation, until our two-hour stop in Salzburg, where their son also joined us. Seeing as I am the ignorant person that I am, I held onto my second seat and let the family of 4 have the other 4 seats. Although I asked the mother to put her feet on my seat as well. Seeing as they offered me cookies (which they ate as well), I assume they did not hate me.
For a short while I thought about moving into another cabin but I preferred to share with the Russian family than with a guy with sweaty feet and smoke breath – yes all other cabins were inhabited by guys like that. I wonder though why they give out reserved seats all together…
As you know me being the uber-organized person that I am, you will be surprised to learn that I arrived in Zürich, having made plans with my little brother to meet him at his platform, but not knowing where and when he would arrive and not having his swiss phone number with me…
After having spend half of my wage on going to the toilet, storing my overnight bag and an orange juice, I started to look for my brother, while simultaneously chatting to the boyfriend (yes!), trying to find out my brothers’ number and getting a feeling for my surroundings.
In the end, we met and started our tour through Zürich. I have to admit it. I liked it. Ok, I say it again – I was wrong – I like the swiss cities I experienced – namely Zürich and Bern. And I also found the swiss people very charming and polite (although I still think their accent is weird, but hey, who am I to say with my Viennese ghetto slang…).
On one of my last trips, I decided to take the camera with me again – as opposed to the mobile camera and I took loads of pictures. I really liked the architecture and the cleanliness of everything.
Zürich is interesting, as you can see its wealth on every corner. People look rich, drive expensive cars and have big houses. On the other hand I loved leaving the beaten tracks again and walking through the small roads.
Bern really reminds me of a mideavel town, its architecture looking as if a court jester might just turn around the next corner. All buildings are nicely renovated and super clean.
Bern is very hilly and the river Aare curves through the center. It is nice to take a run along the river, then walk through town and visit the bears that are the (name) patrons of Bern (if they are not on holiday due to renovation – which obviously happens to me). I also noticed that the Swiss like their flags. They are everywhere.
I can only give you one restaurant recommendation, as Switzerland is really as expensive as everyone thinks, we ate at home most of the time.
We had breakfast in Loft 5 in Zürich though, which is a really nice restaurant on a patio. Unfortunately they are building a new city district at the moment, so the view is not the nicest.
The Euro to the Swiss Franc is 1:1 at the moment, which makes even an economic imbecile like me understand how expensive everything is…
Find enclosed a couple of pics and let’s see where the journey will lead me to next. Again – I wrote that post and then kind of forgot to post it. Since then I made some weekend trips to places in Austria, as well as another trip to Munich, the Bodensee and Salzburg. Next weekend the boyfriend and I will go to Stuttgart and in October Venice is booked. I guess I really make a trip a month this year!