Saturday, April 3, 2010

The Adventure So Far

I have so very much to report, but my computer access is quite limited and with a different keyboard, writing has proven to be a bit monotonous. I will do my best to provide an update regaurdless.

Switzerland was absolutely beautiful and I can state with all confidence that I will be back. Three days was not nearly enough time to absorb the pure beauty of the Alps and take in the positive energy of the swiss people. Going from Paris to Interlaken was quite a shock to the system. We went from a large, packed hostel in the middle of one of Europe's largest cities to a sleepy little mountain town, even smaller and more quaint than Boone, NC. Paris is an important city to experience with all of it's marvelous cultural landmarks and unique sophistication. Switzerland was a breath of fresh air, however, not only due to the crisp mountain altitude, but also the vibe of the people transformed from a bit snobby and standoffish to welcoming and laid back. I enjoyed the overall Parisian experience, but was more than ready to depart, especially with less than ideal weather and a few creepier men we encountered the final night of our stay.

Interlaken was very quiet, almost too quiet because of the unusual time of year we selected to visit. None the less, we still were warmly welcomed and managed to bond with several locals. They were typically tandem skydivers, hostel staff, and bartenders from the local community and abroad. Switzerland seems to be a popular destination for young Austraillians. Our second day we boldly lept off the side of a mountain overlooking the story book town we planned to make our final decent. With nothing but a parashute and our tandem jumpers, Lisa and I took our 3 steps off the cliff into the air, thousands of feet above the tree tops. We soared high above land for about 15 minutes that seemed to last forever. It was so overwhelmingly peaceful and spectacular. After landing on solid ground, we shared a round of brews with our paragliding pros then headed to the popular underground pub beneath the Balmers. The drinks flowed and conversation deepened as we bonded with the local workers. Once again I was recharged as we dove into ideas about how to escape the seemingly inevitable fate of the working world as I've know n it to be. As the night tapered off, I felt renewed and excited about what the future holds for me.

The next morning we were greeted with snowflakes as thez clung to the skylight above our bed. The snow continued all morning and made for an absolutely spectacular veiw on our train ride to Luzern. A thin layar of white powder covered the vast green fields and distant mountain tops. Little villages sprung up sporatically and the tiny cottages appeared so quiet and untouched that our passing train seemed to violently disturb the scerenity. On our train car, children laughed and played while other passengers gazed out the window at the scene, snapping photos and enjoying the view. A precious collie joined the ride and became my companion for a sizable portion of the journey. The large version of my own pet at home so closely resembled Gus that I couldn't help but miss my own family back at home.

Luzern was overall short lived, but enjoyable. We met a couple of young college guys from Texas that insisted on joining us for dinner. They were relatively pleasent at first, but as the drinks flowed, they quickly and acurately fulfilled the stereotype of loud, disrespectful Americans. Frustrated and a bit embarrassed, we quickly decided to part ways and found a couple of nice Swiss guys to show us to the next lively scene. I struck up a long conversation with one of them, dispite the booming music in the background. This friendly local shared many common interests and was a real joy to mingle with. We parted abruptly as the night ended, but I do hope to maintain some type of communication.

We made the long trip to Munich yesterday and started off our trip here with a lot of beer and a wild and crazy evening across town at a lively club. It was enjoyable, but left my head pounding in the morning. We still made it to the 3 hour walking tour and enjoyed a beer and lunch at Munich's largest beer hall. Lisa leaves me tonight and I will be once again solo in this crazy party city.

Being with a friend from home made this trip much easier and much more comfortable, changing the projectory of my trip temporarily. While it was more than a pleasure to have her with me, making many elements logistically and socially easier, I will once again have to remember my purpose for making this trip. This trip is part vacation, but also part of a greater journey. I have had my fair share of booze and excitement, but have lacked introspection and personal time for reflection. Lisa successfully dug her way through the travel books as I relaxed and enjoyed the ride. Now I am all alone again and must regain the motivation to reach out to new people and forge my path. Budapest is next, Tuesday I set off on the night train to this mystery town I know very little of. I can only imagine the vast differences but welcome the experience and the challenge.

1 comment:

  1. Linzer, this is your best entry yet! Your descriptions are getting even more detailed and poetic. You're learning a lot even if you don't realize it. I've really enjoyed reading everything so far!