We drove, Sox concentrating hard on staying on the right side of the road and me following Google Maps and reminding him “Keep Right!” It made me feel like we were on an episode of The Amazing Race.
We arrived in St. Gallen and following the Maps, looked for the town centre so we could park and walk. We took a few turns and suddenly we were on cobbled streets with no cars and only pedestrians.
Sox: “I don’t think we are supposed to be driving here!”
B: “Google Maps is directing us here. Besides, the people seem to be moving out of our way and no-one looks too irritated.”
We finally found parking, after wading through a sea of people and went straight to Information. The man took out a map and showed us little places we should see.
Info man: “This here is the pedestrian area and market place.”
Sox: “Wait a minute… That’s the area we just drove through!!”
Info man: “Really? Oh no! You’ll probably be in the newspaper tomorrow!”
We got the info we needed and left, laughing! Oh for those to be the headlines in South Africa! Wouldn’t that be nice.
When we walked through the very area we had driven through, we couldn’t stop laughing. We had driven through a market. Oops!
The only problem with Switzerland (because it can’t be 100% perfect) is that it truly is the most expensive country to visit. The Swiss Franc (CHF) is the same as the dollar, so we were multiplying everything by 15. However, the dollar and Franc aren’t the same. The cost of living is high, so for example, a simple cup of coffee is 6CHF. R90 for a small cup of coffee is ludicrous.
Look at this punnet of strawberries… R80. Ouch.
Main roads have wires running above the streets for the trams…
We headed over to an area where an artist had covered the streets in red carpet, created benches (also covered in red carpet) and when you look up, giant jelly beans dangle above your head. OK, I don’t know if they are jelly beans, they could have been giant kidney beans, but art is up to interpretation, no?
We left the red carpet and walked through the pretty streets…
We found a street vendor selling Bratwurst…Got a take away and ate it on our search of the 1000 year old Library.
The Abbey Library (Stiftsbibliothek) is at the impressive Cathedral, Abbey of Saint Gall and is the richest medieval library in the world.
You buy your tickets and immediately have to lock your camera away. NO photos or videos allowed.
You also have to wear shoe covers to protect the 1000 year old floor. This is the only photo I have of our feet in the shoe covers…
It is incredibly impressive, and even has a mummy!
I WISH we could have taken photos.In fact I tried to take a sneaky video with my phone, but we were immediately pounced on. Turns out, Sox actually did manage to get a sneaky video (Vlog coming soon). I must look like the guilty one.
On leaving, we were met by this handsome Bernese Mountain dog. We went in search of coffee for Sox and sat down at Kuhn’s. I think the rule of thumb should be to order what that particular country specialises in. In Switzerland the most popular coffee is Caffè Crema. It’s a long espresso with special coffee cream.
I ordered that and Sox ordered a cappuccino. I’ll let the pictures do the talking…I had a good laugh at my “coffee snob.” Admittedly, the burnt coffee was particularly hard to swallow when it cost 8CHF (R135.)
We still had a long drive ahead of us, so we stopped at one of the largest supermarket chains in Switzerland, Migros and bought some cold meats (Fleischkäse and salami) and Swiss Emmental cheese and soft camembert for the road. I love rolling cold meat and cheese up as little snacks…
Off to Zug to stay with my Uncle and Aunt for the night…
We met up with my Aunt Nadja, her little dog Ike, and off we went to explore beautiful Zug. The first thing that gets me every time I visit Switzerland is the cleanliness and the colours. Everything is brighter here.
Lake Zug is actually massive and home to beautiful swans and ducks.
Trees, flower pots and benches line some of the lake…
We walked all along the Lake, admiring the buildings… This is the government building…
It was 33 degrees and everyone was lying on the grass embankments or swimming in the lake.
We stopped for a refreshing Aperol spritz before moving on…
Sox thought it was hilarious that my maiden/professional name was on a trash bin.
If the Swiss love their flowers a lot, they love their flags even more. You’ll find flags in the streets everywhere!
We walked to a Migros and Sox and I bought all the groceries for dinner that we would be having at my Uncle and Aunts home, on their balcony.
Their balcony has the most spectacular view of the lake.
My uncle popped some Bratwurst and chicken pieces on the Braai…
Ike decided that Sox’s lap was an excellent resting place…
As soon as the sun set, it became chilly and he cuddled up even more…
We drank wine, ate the delicious mezze of cheese, meats and salads and watched the sun sink into the lake.
Tomorrow we head up into the snow capped Alps for a night away!