Summer at home in Daisy Hill

Thursday, October 15, 2015

SIGHT SEEING IN SWITZERLAND 1970

(Continuing My Story)

In 1970 Bill and I went to Switzerland, his homeland, with the intention of staying for at least two years and maybe forever. I was a bit apprehensive as I would have to learn the language if I was ever to get a job there. I had no idea if the authorities would accept my Australian qualifications. However, being young and adventurous and with no worries we decided on a holiday first  before looking for work. 

We lived with Bill's parents, who were keen to show me their beautiful country. We made many trips to many parts of Switzerland and further. It was a magical time but I haven't got pics of all the places and people we visited. Some of the following photos are post cards which I collected then. It was great seeing the country with the locals, much better than being a tourist.







Bill drove his mother and aunt and me up to Grindlewald a lovely village in the mountains.  It was summer so the snow was only on top of the mountains and not in the village as it is in winter. I was gob smacked at how high these mountains were.


 Another day Bill's cousin and family invited us to a picnic at Schwarzwasser. The weather was not the best but they had a plastic tent with a big sign saying,"Welcome to Switzerland."
Just coming from living in the tropics for seven years, I found it hard to get used to the cold weather...and this was summer.
 BBQ Swiss style.


 We visited Bern often as it wasn't far to drive. I loved the old buildings, the famous clock with revolving dancers on the hour, the street fountains and the very chic shops with under cover footpaths. We also visited the famous bear pit, where the bears begged for carrots. Even though the bears are the emblem for the Canton of Bern, I couldn't help feeling sad and shocked to see them kept in a bear pit. It did have a cave like enclosure for them to escape into at night or when they didn't feel sociable. It wasn't until many years later that a more humane park like enclosure was made for them.







 Another drive we took was to Fribourg and the tiny town of Gruy√®re, famous for its cheese. The roads were very narrow and closed to traffic but also full of tourists. We saw cheese being made in the traditional way.
On the way home we called into Gstaad, where famous movie stars live. It was a lovely town too.

 One of the most beautiful day trips was to Oeschinensee the highest lake in Europe. We had to take a cable car and chairlift. I had my heart in my mouth all the way. the scenery was stunning and swinging through the Alps exhilarating.


 On the way home we stopped at Blausee where the water was an amazing dark blue colour. We went into this restaurant and had a trout lunch. Trout from the lake.

After many other trips to Biel, Basel, Zurich, Lucerne, Solothurn I finally convinced Bill to take me into the snow topped Alps. Would you believe I married a Swiss guy who doesn't like snow or skiing? This was something I would have to work on.

 We drove up the most incredible narrow winding roads. We went over three mountains, the Sustan Pass, the Furka Pass and the Grimsel Pass.

 The road carved into the side of the mountain.

The roads had just been opened for the summer. The snow was metres high on each side. I played in the snow and slipped and slid down a hill. It was the closest I got to skiing this trip but in later years we went in winter and I did ski a little.
Days and months passed and Bill's mum kept suggesting that Bill should get a job...............(to be cont)

21 comments:

  1. Hello Diane, Switzerland is a beautiful country. I love the views of the mountains and lakes. It was a fun time for you and Bill to be seeing his homeland. Wonderful photos and post!

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  2. Great memories for me of a stunning country. You look a bit chilly at the barbecue :-) T'other Diane

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  3. Amaaaazing scenery Diane, I haven't been but I can see what they say about Switzerland is true. Had to chuckle, you don't look very happy in the picnic photo, bit too cold :)

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  4. Switzerland is a fantastic unspoilt country

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  5. Beautiful country! Fun reading your adventures back then. This is all going to be a great gift for your daughters and grandsons to read someday!

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  6. The water is not just blue as it is in Canada, it is a clear blue. Just amazing scenery.

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  7. Thank you for sharing your Swiss holiday with us. It looks absolutely fascinating.

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  8. Glorious scenery, if a little chilly. I can't imagine how cold you felt! I had difficulty coping with the cold when we first moved from Mt Isa to NZ.

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  9. Beautiful mountains and scenery.
    I can't imagine living having snow capped peaks in summer..

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  10. Such incredible scenery and you got to see the best of it with your native guides. You were such a good photographer. That photo of the mountainside with the roads crisscrossing back and forth, back and forth, is just amazing. I can imagine how you treasure these memories.

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  11. Oh what a beautiful country, I myself would love to visit Switzerland one day if only I can convince Tim he at this stage isn't that interested

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  12. Wonderful! You have had many exciting adventures in your life Diane. I am looking forward to the next installment.

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  13. What a great blast from the past!

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  14. Not everything changes for the better, but I hope the situation for the bears has.

    Nice post.

    Cheers - Stewart M - Melbourne

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  15. For 45 years old, your pictures are super.

    Greetings,
    Filip

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  16. Oh my, what beautiful photos, and love the first part of your story!

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  17. Just finished reading the previous post about meeting your in-laws, Diane, and how you and Bill traveled through so many different places before reaching Switzerland. What a wonderful adventure and thanks for sharing it by way of your photos and postcards.

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  18. Oh switzerland Love it We went there on holiday when I was young I think we went to Altdorf. How great that you have all these beautiful postcards. What a great place to live for a while. When we go to Holland we will stay a night in Zurich. When you come to NZ next year let me know if you come to chch.

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  19. That must have been such a change compared to your country ! and the mentality of the people are so different too.

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  20. Colorado looks a bit like Switzerland, but I do believe the Alps are higher mountains! We also have to drive over passes and there is often snow on the high peaks even in summer. I visited Lugano Swutzerland on a trip to N Italy. It was so lovely.

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