I first visited the Alps in 2001 as a 17-year old on a post-graduation France trip. It was my first time to see “real” mountains, and not from an airplane either. Initially our group had fought our teacher on the decision to do a 3-day extension to Chamonix at the end of our 17-day tour. We all wanted to go to Italy, but our teacher wouldn’t budge.
“The kids last year hated Rome. It was hot and crowded.… we’re much better off going to the Alps,” she told us. We whined a lot, but it was to no avail.
We arrived in Chamonix after a hot and crowded few days in Paris. We were there for the end of the Tour de France, and so the city was packed and our un-airconditioned hotel provided no relief from the heat of the city in July. We were all country kids, we’d been traveling for two weeks, and this was so far out of our comfort zone it wasn’t even funny. But then…
…and also this….
I was sold. We took two cable cars and an elevator to visit the Aiguille du Midi, which gave us a view from 3842m. Far below us the brightly colored jackets of the mountain climbers stood out in the snow as they made their way up Mont Blanc. It was an amazing view, and I couldn’t believe that some of our group had opted out due to their fear of heights!
On the way back down we took a break between cable cars and ran around the side of the mountain. There was snow in the shade of some of the huge boulders, and we went sledding in our jeans. We’d been traveling for over two weeks, it’s not like they were clean anyways. In the sun the grass was green and full of wildflowers. I wanted to change my name to Heidi, get some goats, and move on in.
Turns out, our Madame C. knew best. Just don’t tell her I said that.
After France I had to lead a mountain-free existence for many years. It was sad, and sometimes I felt like Bilbo Baggins….
But then I came to Germany.
One of my first trips in Germany was to Berchestgaden. And once again, I was hooked.
I love everything about the mountains in Germany. Here are 10 reasons why….
1) I love the rolling landscapes…
|View from the Feldburg in the Black Forest|
2) And the ummmm…. pointy-er landscapes…
|View from the on the Zugspitze|
3) I love getting to see the same views in summer and winter…
|Both views from before heading up the Zugspitze|
4) I love the picture-perfect mountain towns…
5) And the picture-perfect mountain town festivals…
|All from Berchtesgaden|
6) I love fields of sheep behind Alpine hotels….
7) And hiking through fields of cows wearing giant bells….
|On the Feldburg. Shhhhh, don’t tell BV he’s on THE INTERNET.|
8) I love whatever this is….
9) I love the view from the top…. oh, and the feeling of accomplishment from getting there on your own two feet….
|View over the Blaueishütte, Berchtesgaden|
10) And I love that you can get a beer at the top whether you took the hard way-hike or the tourist train (or bus, or cable car, or whatever).
|At the Eagle’s Nest, Berchtesgaden. Shh, don’t tell my dad he’s on the internet either.|
Now I’m not saying that I’m looking into real estate or anything, because I’m not looking to “settle down” right now. But someday I would love to live in the mountains. I’m okay with being a city mouse for now, but in my opinion nothing would be better than waking up to this every morning…
Unless of course, it was if I was looking at that view from a house that looked like…
It’s a little close to the road for me, and a little big, but you get the idea. Wooden shutters, geraniums, cows next door… I love it all.
And of course I’d have to go whole hog on the decor….
|A little blurry, sorry.|
But if you’re going to live in an Alpine-style house, you have to go all wood and floral and deer on the inside, don’t you? In retrospect I think this is all due to the fact that when I was a kid, I wanted to live David the Gnome’s house.
And over a nice big fireplace, I want to hang these pictures. They are currently for sale at a nearby antiques shop, and I know this is REALLY WEIRD, but I love them. LOVE THEM.
Actually these pictures are what started this whole post off. Talk about a train of thought rerouting. Yeesh. On second thought, it might be time to leave Germany, because I’m clearly going insane.
Mountains? Beaches? Where do you want to go?