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Saturday, August 17, 2013

First impressions of Switzerland--a paradise--or is it?

I have been in my original home country for about two weeks now. I'm more or less over jetlag and getting used to Swiss life again. This is a series of blog posts about my three-months stay here. I have lived in the United States for more than half of my life but have come back to my original home about once a year, usually for several months, and that way have kept in touch with my friends and family and with life in general in the "old country." Last year I skipped my stay and so two years have gone by since I lived here. Perhaps that's one of the reasons I now look at my home country with somewhat different eyes, the eyes of a visitor rather than a permanent resident, a view perhaps from the outside. Things that I have taken for granted and not paid too much attention to before are somehow more noticeable. Not sure yet how to explain it. Perhaps it becomes clearer as time goes on.

However, philosophy aside for the time being, I wanted to show you a few pictures of my usual morning walk/jog through the woods. After all, I need to counter the extra pounds I will be gaining from all the chocolate and Bratwurschts!

Starting from the house in Wettswil where I live right now, I usually walk and jog for about an hour. Wettswil by the way for those who have read my novel AN UNCOMMON FAMILY is the place where Anna and Karla lived, although I never named the town in the novel and took some liberties with the surroundings.

Walking up the hill for a while, I soon come to a forest. Many years ago, the community had built a workout course through the woods so people could take care of their health and enjoy nature at the same time.  

Oh, yes, the Swiss are known for their orderliness. So even at the beginning of the forest, there is a doggy toilet with free plastic bags for the proud owners, so they can pick up after their charges and deposit the poop conveniently and cleanly.
Well-behaved Swiss dogs!
And into the woods we go. Yes, it's safe to walk by yourself in a forest here. I have been doing it for decades.
Protect new-born fawn!
Please keep dogs on the leash.
But, please, keep your furry friends on the leash when walking them in the woods, because the other furry friends need to be protected.  
Some images from my walk. Further down, the workout course begins.
Those people who live in apartment buildings and don't have a garden, can rent a garden patch and grow their own vegetables and fruit, have picnics, or just relax.

Hikers always know where they are. After all, the nearest town is only 15 minutes away. How can you get lost?
Here the "serious" part of the workout begins. Signs with exercises tell you exactly what you have to do. Yep, Swiss efficiency.
It's been quite hot here lately, in the nineties, but here in the forest, it's pleasant and cool.
Running or walking up the stairs gets your heart pumping
I made it, looking down from above. Heavy breathing!

I skipped that one
My friends: Emmi, Rosi, Lina - healthy happy cows and they all have a name!
Yes, and Marcel is in charge!
Let's see how good my balance is.
Standing at the beginning.
Made it to the end. Not bad!
Relaxing and enjoying the view after the workout.
And now a dip in the pool to cool off!
Cheers, until next time.


  1. Please keep blogging about Switzerland. I love it that the local people built this workout course through the forest. Lovely photos.


  2. Oh, thank you for this post! This is as close to Switzerland as I will ever get, so thanks for sharing. Your view after the workout is a perfect photo! :-)

    1. Thanks, Linda, I'm glad you liked the post. But you never know you might make it to Europe one day--and there are other very interesting countries aside from Switzerland!

  3. I love reading your blog about your stay in Switzerland. Great way to get to w the country and keep in touch. I expect I'll hear more about all the workouts you'll be doing! :) beautiful home and country.


  4. I love reading about your stay in your original country. Great pictures. I too would love to visit Switzerland one day.

  5. Hi Darlene,
    Thanks and you know Spain isn`t that far from Switzerland!

    1. That is so true. Perhaps one day my wish will come true. Besides, Amanda should visit Switzerland.

    2. Darlene, you're right. I can just see Amanda on an adventure in Switzerland.

  6. Funny! Love the cows. Beautiful "after-workout" view. Nice to get a taste of what your life is like when you are gone. I always have wondered about that.

    1. Hey, Dorothy,
      Thanks for dropping by. Do you still remember anything about your trip here?

  7. Hello, Dah-ling! I've read day one and will be back today or tomorrow to read days 2 & 3. I do think it's quite shocking how you misled the readers into thinking you left Switzerland on your own--and weren't banished! The real reason you couldn't return last year was because they beefed up security to keep you out. but bravo to you for finding a way to sneak back in! Yodel it up while you can, baby!

    I won't say I'm shocked, but I think you've been hanging around Scott Nicholson too long. You are on a first name basis with ALL of the cows, huh? OH MY STARS!!! No wonder you were deported---and no wonder Swiss cheese has holes in it! Those poor cows! Have you no shame? (Well obviously you DO as the more explicit cow photos did not show up in the blog...YET!)

    I'm looking forward to Days 2 & 3 (hopefully you'll be in your Heidi garb or blowing your big horn---or maybe an audio track of everyone yodeling or video of everyone polka-ing? You zany Swiss!). I'm off to explore Port Townsend for the day. Have a swell time terrorizing your native country (until you are caught and deported again, that is)!


    1. Monster A-Go-Go I sure missed you and your outrageous comments. LOL. Welcome back. Haven't mastered that alphorn yet and I think I'll pass on the Heidi garb!