Sunday, September 20, 2009

Getting Around

By the first week we'd used practically every mode of transportation possible. Buses for around town, a car to see the sights and a few others, just for fun, like a horse drawn wagon. When we walked, Eli always had a reason to exclaim "MOM!" with all the buses and trains going by.

Bri got an international driver's license so we could rent a car. I only got scared a couple of times, it was surprisingly stressful for him driving there despite how well-organized and marked things were. We definitely wouldn't have survived in Italy. Although well-maintained, country and mountain roads are quite narrow.

Take this mountain pass, cliffs and opposing traffic to the left and a sheer drop to the right, all on a road we would consider wide enough for one car. Did I mention the fog? Never seen Brian so scared.

And there were always fun things to stop for. Mostly cows on an open range or farmers bringing them from the field for milking, but also goats whose trailer blocked the road while the most spry of the farmer's sons tried to wrangle them. Not just unexpected animals brought us to a halt. Obviously pedestrians have the right of way, but it was good seeing programs like a police officer teaching a small group of brightly-marked kindergarteners how to cross the road or teaching elementary school kids how to ride their bikes in traffic.

The whole trip Eli was teaching us an appreciation for trains. This little green one in Brienz was especially exciting. A 200 year old steam engine pushed a couple of viewing cars up a mountain, through steep cow pastures and all kinds of tunnels("toe teens," as Eli calls them) to an amazing view of the Jungfrau, among others.

Finally a train like Thomas, that blows smoke and steam and has top stop to drink water.

Eli wasn't quite as excited about the big ship we rode on, but he was thrilled when we got off and he saw it was full of cars and even a tour bus that also wanted to cross the lake.

And, as with any other time we visit my dad, there is walking involved. More than you are used to. Luckily he seemed to take it easy on us, probably because I'm pregnant. But it was the best way to experience the land.


cirila said...

you got some great shots of eli. i also love the one where brian is driving on the foggy pass and dad's hair is sticking out.

kim said...

Welcome back! Sounds like you guys had a great trip. You took some nice'll have to post more sometime. By the way, I love the backpack you made for Eli. So cute!

Esther said...

That looks like an awesome trip! How cute that Eli loved the trains, and would yell "Mom!" when he saw them :)
I'm happy our roads are wider here, that road with the fog sounds very scary!