Thursday, October 4, 2007

Hills AND chocolate? Even better!

Today as I was jogging along one of the many local “Wanderwegs” (walking trails), enjoying the sunshine, fresh air, and green scenery all around, I realized that there was a distinct chocolate aroma wafting through the air. Mmmmm... chooooocolaaaaaate... All the sudden I’m craving some of that yummy Swiss specialty. Must be coming from the Lindt factory which is just down the street. It stimulated another sense and was just one more thing that made me say “Wow! This place is magical.” Maybe it’s just that everything is new and different, and the excitement may wear off eventually, but for now Jeff and I are both amazed by things here every day. So we thought we’d share a little more (in case you’re not already motivated to come visit just to see us!)...

We never realized how beautiful of a setting Zurich has. Extending from the city center are many small villages which border the huge Lake Zurich. Conveniently there is a hill that rises up on either side of the lake, so everyone can have a chance to enjoy a view of the lake...


...and of course of the mountains in the distance...

As we always heard, everything is clean and well-kept (cleanliness is next to godliness for the Swiss), and there are flower boxes full of geraniums in every window (except ours, guess I need to catch up!)...

and big green pastures with cows, and more flowers...

We are only 10 minutes outside of Zurich, but yet the area feels very rural. There are cows right outside our bedroom window...

and a neighborhood orchard selling fresh apples and other fruits, as well as sunflowers...

Bells from church towers echo all around… and cow bells ring in the nearby fields… The sounds just add to the magical feeling.

The Swiss are keen on walking (usually with poles so the upper body gets worked out too), and it shows with all the Wanderwegs all around – Here’s one we take regularly from our village back to our apartment...

Walking up those hills must be how they stay thin with all the chocolate they eat here. Jeff has been having chocolate cereal every day and has still lost weight! Well, we always heard chocolate was good for you. Even Special K has chocolate pieces in it...

Speaking of hills :) , the hills here in Zurich are steeper than we expected. The grade right out of our driveway is 15%! (we asked for it didn’t we)

Those hills keep it interesting when bringing home the groceries on the bike, but I think of it as my “secret” training... Now I wouldn’t feel complete biking up a hill without my basket full of wine and swiss cheese (so next time we ride in the Gaps we can have a swiss picnic at the top!)...

We hope this has given you a taste of our life here so far. Of course not everything is perfect, and there are new and different challenges every day, so we will share more of that soon too. Till then, we just wanted to share some of the pleasant things here. The only thing that could make it better is to have our family and friends here with us!

4 comments:

Sean said...

Great post, Beck! Just a little over a week until I'm there! Woohoo!

Brian said...

Although I didn't smell any chocolate being made, I can vouch for the rest! It is everything Becky said, and then some. And the cool thing is, I have seen most of these sights for myself!

i8chocolate said...

MMmmmm, chocolate! It does sound magical!!! Raja and I can't wait to come and see it all for ourselves. Thanks for the snapshot of your wonderful life!

Sandy said...

Yummm, nothin' like Swiss chocolate, Swiss cheese, Swiss scenery...I love the place and understand why y'all like living there. Can't wait to go back some day! Hugs from NH!