Monday, January 5, 2015

Switzerland was.....amazeballs!

So we're back!! And alive and still married (I'll explain shortly.) Switzerland was a blast and just absolutely gorgeous. There really aren't enough words that could describe the beauty of the Alps and surrounding area we stayed in. We arrived later than we had wanted to but work and mostly weather got in our way. First time dealing with driving the on Autobahn with crappy weather (major anxiety for this girl!) but it went fairly well. Once we got out of Germany, Switzerland was a breeze. For anyone driving from Germany to Switzerland--we were told we'd have to stop at the border to get a vignette which usually costs around 30-40 Euro. When we stopped around 6p, it was closed down so YAY, no vignette for us! (I'll try to find a picture of one so you can see what one looks like, which would have been nice if we had known what we were walking into because we totally didn't have a clue #notfromaroundhere!)  Regardless, the guard told us to go right on through as long as we had our passports, which we did, and off we went on the last part of our drive.

We got to Hotel Stechelberg around 8:30p, an entire hour and a half later than schedule but like I said, the weather was a major issue. So you end up winding through these beautiful villages to get to Stechelberg. Sheer cliffs just straight up on every side-absolutely amazing. I mean, you knew when you got out of the car that it was going to be awesome to see in the morning. So we parked and walked into this cute little hotel/restaurant and immediately found our friends! Beer o'clock!!


We all stayed in one building and pretty much took over the second floor of this building....
There were 7 of us total and it was an awesome group! For not knowing everyone, I had a blast! (There were 3 ladies, 4 guys in our group.) We all had brought food to make and drinks to drank! So it worked out well. Eventually we all went to bed because we were up and at it early the next day-7:35a we were heading out to Grundelwald to hit the mountain. I went with skiing this time around (rather than snowboarding) and I'm glad I did, had a total blast working the easier trails! All the guys snowboarded, and the girls skied. We parted ways so the guys could go do their thing for 1/2 the day. This is the train that got us up the mountain initially! We stopped just outside a Tee Pee bar, I mean you don't see that everyday!

So I can bore you with all the details of everything I did that day but I will just say this! It was AWESOME getting out there and seeing everything, and I did get to take a run with my husband in the last half of the day. Although...I didn't think I'd make it down alive! Holy buckets, this trail was supposed to be marked trail 2 and then it was crossed off, like saying "oh yea, you don't wanna go down this trail!" But I had to go down because I took the huge gondola up and I just couldn't back out! The view BTW, at the top of this mountain at 7300ft was unreal.
It looked like you were up in heaven, and the clouds were like a lake that just kept going! And then to our left of that view, you could hear a helicopter start up but you weren't sure where it was coming from?! It was below our view on the far side and it rose up like in a movie and then took off, so cool!
Pretty sure Dick peed his boarding pants just a bit.
So then we headed out to our trail but like I said, it was somewhat closed off. So we went down anyways--i literally felt like I was going to not make it down at certain points, like looking for that helicopter to come scoop me up but I made it down. Not without a lot of choice f-bombs and other profanity. Took a couple pics on the way, mostly when I was resting! These trails are LONG so stopping to let your legs chill is not uncommon!
Oh yea, and this was my view while going down...seriously?!
All I'm going to say about staying married after making it down that damn the trail is that, 1. I made it down and 2. Dick still loves me, man he's a saint. I conquered the biggest mental mind f#ck I've dealt with in a long time! SO happy to be down the trail when we were! Here's my exhausted and I'm-not-having-this any more face....

So for NYE we went out for dinner back in Grindelwald and it was so delish! A big thing at this restaurant was using a hot stone to cook your filet/salmon/shrimp/chicken, etc. Since being over in Germany, I haven't gotten to eat as much beef as I'd like or am used to (everything is pork here!) So to get this sirloin was so great! A side of saffron risotto and viola! Yum! We all voted and instead of staying out in Grindelwald we all decided to go back, throw the soft pants on and hang out, drink our drinks we brought and get ready to watch the fireworks Switzerland puts on at NYE! Awesome plan! We only really made it til like 1a, we were SO beat from skiing all day. It was the first non-hungover New Year's Day I've had in....I seriously can't even remember. #gettingold

I should mention this too, you didn't have to even ski or snowboard to get up and around the mountains while in the area. You just purchase a pass that allows you to get on the train (so cool, it looks old fashioned and some are, but you hop on and it takes you around, through and all over the place!) So you literally can stop at each mountain village and hop back on when ever! The last run on the mountain was at 4:30 so I think as long as you got on and were on your way to your final destination, you're good. It was awesome to see the different areas. And really, all I kept thinking to myself was "oh man, how my friends and I could OWN this mountain with a fun party of train hopping and checking out all the fun bars without even skiing!!"

From being so wiped out from skiing the whole day before (and sleeping in!) the group decided to detour on the way home to see Berne, the capital city of Switzerland! It was interesting because it seemed like a deserted town! No one was up yet from partying the night before and most businesses were closed so we had the city to ourselves! So we walked through the "old city" part of Berne, did some sight seeing and then headed back to the cars.

Needless to say, it was an awesome trip (expensive!) but awesome. While I was having so much fun I also was bummin' out because I wanted all of my family and friends to be able to experience this too! So a little bit of homesickness bit me. But to be able to say I rang in the new year in, it there aren't too many places that are better than that!
So stay tuned....I've created a Top 10 Love and Hates of my time in Germany so far! I'd be curious to see what you think! And feel free to shoot me any question you might have! I'm happy to answer anything for ya! Later gaters....Ciao!

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