Tuesday, October 23, 2012

A Swiss Adventure

Switzerland in general has always been on my list of places to go before I die, but I wasn't sure exactly what parts of it to visit. I'd heard great things about Zurich,  Bern, Interlaken, Lucerne, and Geneva, but we only had time to visit two of them. In the end, we picked Zurich and Geneva as they seemed to be the most lively, and we were not disappointed. We only had a day to spend in each place, which believe it or not was all we needed. Both Zurich and Geneva are very tiny, and everything there is to do and see seemed to be crammed together.

In Zurich, we decided to couch surf again, this time with a guy named Terry. Now keep in mind that Switzerland (and Zurich in particular, I believe) is apparently the number one place to live on earth. The quality of life is superb and the mortality rate is the best in the world. I knew this beforehand, but I was still shocked to see that Terry was really very wealthy. He let us have our own room and bathroom in his two story flat that was by no means modest in size and quality. But as we explored the city, we realized that everyone lives the way Terry does. He told us that the minimum wage in Switzerland is the equivalent to $28/hour, so even people who work at McDonald's can afford a nice car and a three week vacation every year. Im not lying when I say that every single car we saw driving on the streets was either a Porsche, Ferrari, Mercedes, or Audi. However, Switzerland is fucking expensive. As in, a tall latte at Starbucks is the equivalent of $8, and the price food at an inexpensive restaurant is about $23 for a main dish.

(Zurich's Old Town)

We started our our day in Zurich by simply walking around. The city is gorgeous and the people are all very sweet. Then we took a cruise along Lake Zurich, did some more exploring, and then met up with Terry to tour his place of work. That might sound boring, except for the fact that Terry works at Google.

(View of Zurich from our boat)

Now I had heard crazy things about Google, but oh my god it's just ridiculous! Every floor is themed (Terry works on the Simpsons themed floor - so freaking cool), meeting rooms look like little space ships, and there is crazy art everywhere. Employees are served three meals a day and can grab snacks whenever they please. There is a movie theater, a room for napping, a full gym complete with fitness instructors, a bar/lounge, and - get this - a freaking on site spa where employees can come in for free massages whenever they'd like. Are you fucking kidding me? Not to mention to get from floor to floor you can take an elevator, stairs, fire pole or slide. Whichever you'd please. We spent our night at a google employee party, and then headed out to a local bar to catch a soccer game with Terry and his co-workers.

(Angelina and I going down one of the slides inside Google. We thought it would be a good idea to go down together. It wasn´t.)

The next day we headed to Geneva, and dear god I am not over exaggerating when I say the train ride over was the most beautiful thing I had ever experienced. My jaw dropped at least eight times, because I couldn't even believe what I was looking at was real. We passed by the Swiss alps, the city of Bern, and tons of  pure countryside nature. There is no written description that could give it justice. Angelina and I decided that in our next life we'd both like to be cows in Switzerland, so we can just sit and eat all day and enjoy the insane beauty.

(A peek of the Swiss Alps behind Geneva!)

Geneva wasn't as nice as Zurich, but definitely had that Swiss charm. We spent our time exploring the city by foot and found lots of parks, gardens, and the worlds coolest playground that we of course had to stop and play in. And we of course checked out the Jet d´Eau, one of Geneva's main attractions. We also splurged on a fancy dinner at a Swiss fondue place to celebrate our one month travel anniversary!

(Enjoying a view of Lake Geneva)

(Jet D√Čau)

(Boats in the harbor)

I can't believe we've been gone for only a month, it feels like so much longer. But I'm so happy and grateful to be here and I'm so excited to see where our adventures bring us next!

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