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Worldtrip a 45 year old's adventures around the world-which include everything from sitting in random McDonalds using his notebook, hanging with 22 year olds, and other immature stuff.

James Joyce over Fondue

SWITZERLAND | Thursday, 2 July 2015 | Views [508]

Yesterday, I went on another excursion out of town.  Excursions are pretty nice, because in addition to seeing other parts of the country, it is nice to meet other travelers.  Yes, I am staying on hostels where it is easy to meet other travelers, but most of them are half my age-so excursions have some benefits.

In this case, I saw one in the brochure that looked pretty cool, not only an authentic swiss lunch in Lucerne, the most visited town in Switzerland, but while eating lunch, an authentic show, complete with alphorn blowing (the ones from the Riccola commerical).  I was able to sign up at the tourism office in the train station yesterday morning-and then met the bus at 10:00 am.

The excursion buses typically carry passengers for multiple excursions-e.g., some on the bus we're going to various mountains, some to monestaries, etc-all sepearte excursions.  When I got on the bus, I encountered a few from the excursion the day before-the one to Heidiland, Liechtenstein, etc. I even saw a woman from Miami who I talking to on my first day in Zurich.  At the lunch and show, I was looking forward to a nice crowd of people who I can compare notes.

When it came time to dropping off the passengers for the lunch and show, it was just two of us-It turns out that most of the people on the bus we're going on other excursions-to the mountains, monestary, etc. Only two of us we're doing lunch and the show-myself and a woman from Calgary who looked to be in her 70's.  Frankly, I talked to the bus driver about upgrading to one of the mountain tours, but decided to stick with what I had. So there was a table for just the two of us in the restuarant. 

We talked for a while, it turns out this woman has been to the top of several mountains in Switzerland (I haven't been to any-which was another reason I was thinking of a mountain), so she was ok with lunch and the show . She was also a James Joyce fan-to say the least. I knew nothing about James Joyce, other then I have one of his books on my shielf at home (Ulysses), which I haven't yet read. She was in Zurich to see every place James Joyce ever lived-She was then going to Trieste, Italy to see more places where he lived.  She wanted to eat when he ate, drink what he drank, etc. She belonged to a James Joyce book club-where the members, presumably elderly ladies like herself, read James Joyce, and each member had a specialty-such as music, humor, etc-all parts of James' Joyce's books. As she said "I don't want to go on and on about James Joyce, but I sure could."

So over James Joyce, her extensive travels (which she went on and on about), I had Swiss food-which was cheese fondue, some fish recipe which I was able to upgrade to(the original item was some sausage which  I won't eat), and some potato dish. I am not that picky-but this food wasn't great. But then there was the  show! Three guys blowing the alphorn, a women teaching everyone to yodel, and a band with an accordian-typical tourist stuff. They even had two guys in a cow suit going around to all the tables-yes typical tourist stuff.

After lunch-I asked Miss James Joyce to please tell the bus driver if I wasn't at the meeting point at 5:30-I was going to see about going to the top of a mountain! And then take the train back-so I went to  the boat terminal-Lucerne is on a lake, and the mountains are on the other side of the lake-I was able to get on a boat for $27-which would take me to the base of the mountain.  The boat ride wasn't short-it was about 1 1/2-2 hours, as the boat made about 4 stops along the lake to pick up and drop off passengers before reaching the base of the mountains. After $72.00 more round trip (yes, but i figured it was a mountain in Switzerland), for the cogwheel train-supposidly the steepest in the world, and another 40 minutes-, past cows, alpine forests, and dandelion fields above the treeline, I was on the top of Mount Pilatus. The view was spectacular. I would have loved to stay for hours-but the last cable car down (One can take the cog railway up and cable car down) was at 5:30-40 min-so I got on a cable car and descended the  mountain-for a bus back to Lucernce.

It was about 7:00 pm when I got back to Lucerne-I hung out for a few hours. Lucerne is a typical Swiss town-it has the world's oldest wooden covered bridge, And lots and lots and lots of tourists. Lots of Americans, and lots Asian tourists. As charming as it was, it is nice to go to less touristed places as well.


Tags: lucerne, switzerland



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