I like to stop along the way. If I can get off a train and nose around a town for a couple of hours or pull off the highway to see something cool, I’ll do it in a heartbeat. When we had Mr. Rome and Ms. Barcelona visiting, they hiked from Chateau de Chillion (near Montreaux) to Vinorama in Rivaz. I picked them up there. Although the lakeside is beautiful, I love the views from Lavaux‘s terraced vineyards. It was a gorgeous day and I couldn’t let them miss the view of Lac Leman (Lake Geneva) and the Alps.
999 A conservative estimate on the number of times we have been lost (or at least taken wrong turns).
998 Pots of yummy, Swiss yogurt eaten. I know that this number is a bit low. We found the world’s best cottage cheese a couple of months in. It definitely hurt our yogurt consumption. We will try to do better next year.
45 The number of dollars paid in speeding tickets. Astoundingly, we have gotten fewer tickets than anyone we know. We were “lucky” enough to get ours in France so we paid it in Euros, much cheaper than tickets in CHF‘s.
40 Number (more or less) of cute pairs of heels in my closet here that have gone unworn due to large amounts of walking and heel eating cobblestones. What has happened to me?
30 Roughly, the number of times I have been honked at while driving. This works out to more or less one honk per drive. Not too shabby.
17 Number of languages we can watch tv in. They are: French, German, Italian, English, Spanish, Catalan, Galician, Portuguese, Turkish, Serbian, Bosnian, Albanian, Arabic, Dutch, Russian, Mandarin and Thai. Unfortunately, we can only understand 1 or 2 of these.
15 The approximate number of emails he receives when I post pictures of him in “fashionable” attire. I get calls saying “what did you post about me because my email is blowing up”.
13 British TV Shows viewed (don’t judge): Top Gear, Grand Designs, Wallace and Gromit, Snog Marry Avoid, Take Me Out, How Clean Is Your House (it is extremely motivational to put on while cleaning), Horrible Histories, Gok’s Fashion Fix/Gok’s Clothes Roadshow, Sherlock (fantastic, a must see), Doctor Who, Jamie’s Great Britian, Time Team, History of Ancient Britain (History of Britain is better). We did not watch the royal wedding even though there is still excessive coverage of it on British TV.
10 Tours (Karlsburg, Burgundy, Cheese Factory, Cailler Chocolate Factory, Underground Lake, Tour of London, Toledo, Cullian Diamond Mine, Nelson Mandela’s Home, Soweto, unsure if safari’s count as an official tour.
9 “Exotic” foods we have eaten: bugs (South Africa), pigeon (England), crocodile (South Africa), horse (at home purchased from the local grocery store), gelatinized foie gras (France – definitely worse than the bugs), ostrich (South Africa), snails (France, bien sur), wild boar (Switzerland), quail (Spain) and duck (France).
8 The number of times he has taken the wrong train, tram or bus to and/or home from work.
7 The approximate number of times I grocery shop in a week (this includes visits to the Patisserie to buy bread). Before our move, I prided myself on being able to get by for almost two weeks on one shopping trip. Now that I carry everything home (and therefore buy less at a time), look for sales all over and try to buy the freshest, I have septupled my trips. Craziness.
5 Meals eaten out at Geneva restaurants since we moved (due to their high cost and our unwillingness to bankrupt ourselves).
4 The number of snow tires that are currently on our car (also the number of regular tires currently in storage). Anyone ever heard of all season tires?
3 Family members who have visited; also the number of times the washing machine repairman has visited our miniscule washer.
2 Dogs given away (and are very happy with their new families)
St. Saphorin, one of the towns in the Lavaux Vineyards (a UNESCO World Heritage Site), is known for its white wine, terraced vineyards and its beauty. It is not false advertising. This place is insanely beautiful. They weren’t lying about the terraces or the wine either.
Lots of things have to come together to make a town this cute. They include: winding streets, gorgeous views of the lake and mountains, stone buildings, cute decorations, adorable fountains, narrow alleys, Roman ruins and, of course, free wine.
|Winding streets? Check.|
|Gorgeous views of the lake and mountains? Hmmm.|
|Yeah, that’ll do. Check.|
|Stone buildings? Check.|
|Cute decorations? Check.|
|The cute decorations were everywhere.|
St. Saphorin is built on a Roman site. In the basement of the house where I grew up, there are canned goods, potatoes and onions. In St. Saphorin, they have excavated Roman ruins in their crypt.
|Roman ruins? Check.|
|Free wine? Check.|
If you are a wine person, or even if you are not a wine person (merely an incredibly beautiful views person), when you come to Switzerland spend a day hiking around the Lavaux vinyards. They are amazing and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Franz Weber helped to get them declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site and ensure their protection from development. He continues to oppose their development calling it the “concretization of Lavaux.” Can you imagine Del Boca Vista Phase III here?
Yep. That’s France across the water. I hear they make wine there too.