Carina's directions to her home in Leysin, Switzerland:
"The trian goes from geneva to aigle, then you change a aigle onto a smaller brown train that goes to leysin, and you want to get off at the first stop - leysin village. so the train, is towards brig, it will go through lausanne, vevey, montreux and then aigle is the next stp but it is never writen on the board. ever. it can be stressful. but dont panic."
A smaller brown train?? I have to say, I was a bit nervous about how I would manage to find this place. I took the train from Hamburg to Geneva, and from Geneva to Carina's. I was on various trains for a grand total of 12 hours. Blech. But the scenery in Switzerland was gorgeous. Geneva seemed very dirty from the train, but Carina says it's actually really nice and clean. We'll explore on Thursday. From Geneva, I traveled to Aigle, a tiny town at the foot of the mountains. The smaller brown train turned out to be an ancient little mountain-climbing tram with just two small cars. It's probably been in operation since 1920. It rolled through the streets of Aigle, then straight up the mountain until we reached 1200 meters and the ski town of Leysin. I was a bit nervous that the train wouldn't actually make it up the mountainside. A few times, we stopped on the incline to let another train pass, and I had serious doubts about whether we would be able to start up again or just have to roll slowly back down to Aigle.
To say Carina's chalet is nice would be a bit of an understatement. To say Leysin is beautiful is a huge understatement. Breath-taking, awe-inspiring, magnificent and spectacular come closer to describing it. I woke up this morning to dazzling sunlight illuminating a vast, snow-capped mountain range. It was really warm, so I opened all the windows and puttered around listening to the sound of the bells on the necks of the lambs and donkeys next door. It's a bit of a weird place, because many townspeople are American or English expats, but most are Swiss and say "bonjour" when you pass them on the street. There are a lot of skiers and snowboarders about as well, which means there are a ton of young people in town.
So yeah, I'm enjoying it mucho. It feels really good to be back with Carina. Alex was supposed to come too, but she got stuck in Santorini, Greece. Rough, huh? And on Thursday, I'll head to Lyon to see Izzi. I can't wait to see her! And soon she'll be back in London and we can hang out ALL THE TIME! Yay!