All By Myself (Zurich, part 2)

On the glorious second morning (glorious because I was well rested for the first time in what feels like a week) I got dressed and ready for the day and went to breakfast in the bar of the hostel. The included breakfast was soooo much better than that of the hostel I stayed at in Paris. It wasn’t that much more extensive (bread, various jams and Nutella, cereal, yogurt, tea, and coffee) but the bread was fresh and the coffee made to order. As it was free (well, included in the price) I was not going to sneer at it. Plus the employee was helpful and pointed me in the direction of the bus to the train station.

On my way there, I realized that all the clocks said almost 9 am, but my iPhone said almost 8. Took me a few minutes to catch on that Zurich is on a time zone 1 hour ahead of London. Thank goodness I noticed or else I would have been an hour late for everything! I just barely caught the 9:05 train to the Uetliberg, Zurich’s mountain.

It is 869 meters above sea level, towering 450 meters over the city, affording some breathtaking panoramic of not only Zurich, but of all these other little villages and valleys between more forested mountains. I love nature but am apparently known in our family as not liking hiking, so Mom and Dad will be shocked when I tell them that I hiked to the top of the mountain alone! There was a lookout tower at the peak so I got some more incredible panoramic shots which almost didn’t happen as my memory card became full and I had to frantically delete pointless photos from my camera to make room.

Zurich Lake from the lookout tower

Once back in the city, I had to buy another card, but thank goodness I deleted those other ones because I can’t even describe the experience; words just simply cannot do it justice. I need pictures!

Back in the main thoroughfare and away from the icy peace of the mountain, I rewalked Bahnhofstrasse, but at a much more leisurely pace than yesterday’s mad rush towards lunch. It looked completely different this time, I suppose because the sun was out despite it still being cold. I took some more detours down those addictingly quaint streets, but always brought myself back to Bahnhofstrasse. I may have ended up popping into another famous chocolate shop (Spungli) but I limited myself to only one piece!

Rows and rows of chocolate!

I also found some souvenirs for Dad and Kevin. And I took a picture of the Jimmy Choo store for Mom 😉

I couldn’t find the museum I was looking for so I found myself with an hour to kill before my boat tour of Zurich Lake. I wished I’d brought my Kindle but I didn’t want to carry it around all day and I couldn’t bring a purse because of the airline restrictions. So I spend 45 minutes sitting on the dock listening to music while watching the ducks and swans (they have wild ones here) battle over a few pieces of bread a kid was tossing into the lake. It struck me though how weird it already felt speaking and hearing others speak English. The official language of Zurich is German and I was already used to hearing it everywhere. Granted I didn’t understand a word of it, but even hearing English come out of my own mouth seemed strange.

I took a boat tour of the lake that was really just a round trip ride around the lake, but as I had a ZurichCard it was free so I’m not one to complain. Again I got some amazing pictures of the colorful houses and little neighborhoods surrounded by forests and snow capped mountains in the distance. There wasn’t any snow in Zurich but other areas had it a few days ago. After 90 minutes of complete silence (I didn’t even listed to music!) I walked back along the lake to the anti-climatic Museum Bellevire, with a snore-worthy exhibition on perfume. I really didn’t care so I ended up just tracing the remainder of yesterday’s walk and heading back to the hostel. Then I showered, finished my book while eating another pizza, and journaled.

And the night set on my second day. Once again, to be continued….

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