Monday, 25 May 2015

Another Writing Break - oops!

 
Another week without writing but I do have a good excuse - really!

You may remember from a previous blog post (you know, the one with the Vikings) that we are celebrating my husband's big birthday this year and in order to make it last as long as possible, we have been to Switzerland for a week. As it was also our fifth anniversary, we decided to push the boat out and stay at the fabulous Alpenrose hotel in Wengen.

The journey, once we'd flown into Geneva, involved five trains (including the Panoramic Train from Montreux) and I have to say the Swiss trains are amazing and put ours to shame. What a wonderful way to travel.

Even in the rain, the scenery was stunning but what we hadn't bargained for, as we wound our way through the Alps, was for the rain to turn to heavy snow! The scenery was transformed into a winter wonderland... and then the little cog train we were travelling on broke down!

Before we could start to wonder which log cabin we'd be spending the night in, with super Swiss efficiency, the rescue train came to get us, we piled into a new train and managed to arrive at our beautiful village destination only a little late.


The following morning we woke up to this sight from our balcony as most of the snow had melted in the valley.

Over the next few days, we walked, we went up the mountains in cable cars, we rode 'trot bikes' (scooters with brakes) down mountain paths, we looked at the wild flowers, and we ate way too much apple strudel!



The most spectacular thing we did, though, had to be the journey through the Eiger mountain on a train to the highest station in Europe at the top of the Jungfrau. Now most of you will know that I hate tube trains but somehow this didn't affect me in the same way and to step out onto the glacier, once we'd reached our destination, was incredible.

We walked to a mountain hut where the air was so thin we had to stop every few minutes to get our breath. It was worth it just to leave the crowds behind.

I've never heard such perfect silence.

On our last day, the snow came back. We'd had a great holiday and the return journey by rail was just as impressive as on the way... until we reached the airport. After an hour and a half delay, we were at last sitting in our seats, buckling our seatbelts, when the captain came onto the intercom. This is what he said:

"Ladies and gentleman. I am sorry for the delay. It was due to the lightning strike in Greece."

As well as hating tubes, I am a nervous flier and couldn't believe his insensitive words. Which plane was struck? This one? Another one? I nearly got off and walked. It wasn't until I got home that I found out the lightning strike was an unexpected strike by air traffic controllers! A lesson in choosing your words carefully.

A little bit of writing news before I go. For anyone interested, you still have time to read the two stories I have in The People's Friend Special - both written for the lovely illustrations my editor sent me.
 






22 comments:

  1. As a mountain lover I am VERY envious of your week in the Alps! Would love to go to Wengen. Have added it to my list of must-stay places. Congrats on the PF publications!

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    1. If you ever decide to go, feel free to pick my brains about it, Kath. It's a lovely place.

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  2. Pleased you had a good time, Wendy.

    Switzerland is a wonderful place to go. I went on a school trip when I was 15, and on the first day injured my toes so had to wear sandals. Two days later I was still wearing them when we went up to that station on the Jungfrau, but we weren't able to go anywhere because it was snowing and the clouds were very low, so we spent the time inside drinking hot chocolate, until it was time to take the train back down.

    So thank you for the pictures. :-)

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    1. We went on a really sunny day and it was great but we heard some people, later on in the week, say that when they went they could see nothing. It's such a shame as the train fare there is not cheap.

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  3. I too did that journey through the Eiger to the station at the top - many years ago but never forgotten. For that alone you can be forgiven for your 'oops' writing break. Now that you're safely back and in view of the venue of this very active holiday I'm happy writing was the only break! May your husband continue to enjoy his big birthday.

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  4. What a fantastic trip! Have to agree that's a pretty good excuse for a break from the writing.

    The lightning strike comment would have unnerved me too.

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    1. I laugh now, whenever I think of it. I couldn't understand why no one was panicking!

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  5. You've brought back memories of a lovely trip I made to the same area xxx years ago - I dare not calculate the years. I regularly pick up the brochures and will return - by train.

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    1. The train journey is nearly as good as the destination, Elaine.

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  6. Wendy, I'm a sea-level woman, myself, yet your pix and story were just amazing to read. And yes, way to choose your words, pilot! Jeeze.

    Thanks for the inspiration,
    Sue

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    1. I bet he never even realised what he'd said. Sue.

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  7. Wow, amazing! Oh, and I would NOT have been impressed with the pilot's words!
    Great post Wendy, hope it's given you some wonderful writing inspiration :)

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    1. I think it was all so lovely it's made my brain go to sleep, Sam!

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  8. What a wonderful holiday, Wendy! We had the most brilliant holiday in Switzerland just after we were married and travelled the length, breadth and height of it on every form of transport. I would so love to go back and your photos are great.

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    1. You really must go back, Rosemary. It's so beautiful.

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  9. Fab post! What a wonderful trip, hope its given you lots of inspiration?

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    1. It's certainly given me inspiration for going away again, Maria!

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  10. Hi Wendy - just found your blog and enjoyed reading this account of your trip to Switzerland. It brought back some great memories of when I did the Eiger Trail! Best wishes, Susan.

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    1. The Eiger Trail was closed as there was too much snow :(

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