Catching up on Saturday on SundaySaturday Justin and I went to Lucerne. We left with the group, since they were going home then by way of Lucerne. We got there about noon, and found out by looking at a sign that for some reason, there apparently was only one train going back to Interlaken that evening, which was contrary to what our printed schedule said. So we only had till about six o'clock.
Let me tell you, it was cold. I mean, cold. Oh yes, and--COLD. We hadn't seen much in the guide book about Lucerne and heard there were museums, but didn't have much time or anyone to interpret the significance of things to us, so we walked around the city. Lucerne is on Lake Lucerne, and the train station is right by the lake. We walked for a while and bought some salami and cheese at a Migros (as Justin says, a European Walmart), and went upstairs to their cafeteria to eat it with the good bread we bought the day before in Lauterbrunnen (you may picture us as little ragamuffins carrying our worldly belongings--a good part of which is bread and cheese--in a sack on a stick as we wander). Anyway. So we make these great sandwiches--the cheese was Gouda, the salami was in the shape of large pepperoni, and the bread was deLISHus (we cut it ourselves)--then the manager comes by and says a lot to us in German. Then I pointed to the cheese and meat and pointed that we bought it downstairs, and he waved it was fine and let us stay. Whew. :) It was a great sandwich.
Then we kept walking and discovered the older part of town, where the streets were sort of cobbledy, and the shops were fancy. We ran into a big festival thing, with lots of loud oompa-ish bands and all the band people were wearing ludicrously large masks of old-timey Swissish people. We watched that for a bit and went further up the hill to explore this wall with several towers all along it. It was beautiful. We couldn't go inside, so we followed it to the end (my fingers were about to break off from the cold) and headed back to the station. Lucerne was cool. I enjoyed walking around it (we also walked through an industrial part and a cool residential part down by the lake) and finding some neat things on our own, like the wall and the cool, old part of town.
Our train, unfortunately, was deathly ill. It kept stopping between stations, sitting for a while, then going. All bad. We wanted to get back, were cold, tired, and getting tense because of the train issues. Finally they transferred us to a good, new, fast train, and we weren't too late getting back. Then we ate the second round of our delicious sandwiches (oh, and split the other half of an excellent chocolate bar), and read some chapters in a book about wisdom in relationships. Then bed. Yay!
What I learned on Saturday... academically, I learned more about Swissness. Lucerne is different from Interlaken is different from Lugano... and I feel like I learned about dealing with travel issues better. (Into personal learning now) Traveling a lot by train has helped me get more comfortable with working in an unfamiliar language, in unfamiliar places, to do unfamiliar things. It's been good for me. Until now, we'd never really had a problem with Swiss trains either, so I'm thankful for that. Also, I learned that I've been thinking of myself too much lately. In Riva, there's nobody I normally serve or relate with much, except Justin. It's kind of gotten me out of the habit, and I realized that that is a big source of my discontent. What a revelation.