Day 33. Sunday. 15/9/2019. Ipsach
We woke today surrounded by fog - no mountains, trees or sports fields to be seen. It was pretty and not cold. Ian and I packed our ports ready for tomorrow’s departure, and soon we’ll go for a walk. I asked if it not be as long as when we walked from Biel to Ipsach - I don’t think I could handle that again.
Trudi and Marcel are a 1 minute walk to the station which their apartment overlooks. This is a local suburban line and there is a 30 minute service on quiet, modern, mostly 2 carriage trains which link up with the bigger inter-city trains. Migro, the small supermarket, is 4-5 minutes walk, and they do all their shopping there, Trudi with a shopping trolley and Marcel with a small moving trolley for carrying a pack of 12 sparkling water and he can then put Trudi’s trolley on top of that. Then they toddle home - well, Marcel toddles, but Trudi is very fit and quick. I said to Ian that we might be like that one day!!! Their daughter Susan and husband live in the next apartment block and will be moving to a new apartment which is under construction, next year, but it’s only 3 stops on the local train. They are a very close family of 2 daughters and 1 son. Trudi is getting a bike next week, and Marcel is looking into buying a 3 wheeler, as his balance isn’t so good. They won’t ride on the main road but keep to the smaller, dirt roads, and can even ride all the way to Biel. It will be good for them as well as the walking, which they both love. Marcel checks how many steps he’s done a couple of times a day and just doing what we’ve been doing without an actual ‘walk’, it’s usually 9,000+, which is a couple of thousand less than he likes to do. I don’t think they understand that we don’t walk this much at home, but they’ll sometimes walk for 2+ hours. I don’t have time for that, and Ian doesn’t have the inclination!! Trudi has said she likes the apartment and living here, but she is getting bored. She’s thinking of helping with reading at the local school. Her other daughter Reggi is a teacher, so should be able to advise. Marcel has his computer and spends hours with his thousands of photos, and has some amazing books made of holidays when Swiss friends have visited in Australia and they’ve travelled around together. Puts us to shame, the places they’ve been and can remember the names of the smallest towns. Marcel talks continually of Australia but often gets stuck on the name of a town, but Trudi comes to the rescue and can usually remember the name. Sometimes it’s been like a puzzle, with an area and surrounding towns or roads recalled, but no name, and then we’re often able to help out. It’s interesting that Marcel and Trudi have both lived all their lives in Switzerland with its mountains, lakes, green fields and wonderful old houses and history, but absolutely love Australia which is the opposite with dry, brown, dusty outback which they have travelled many times and love, but they’ve also see the beauty of the Great Barrier Reef, Great Ocean Road, coastal islands and beaches in every state, probably more than most dinky Di Aussies have.
We had lunch at the lake restaurant and were surprised at the number of people having picnics, swimming, boating, and generally enjoying the sun. Trudi said this could even be the last hot weekend - the weather can turn very quickly. It was lovely to see, and there is so much space around the small section of the lake we walked so there was no crowding. And let me tell you, we walked 12,000 steps - and I know all about it! Trudi’s having 10 minutes lie down and I’d like to do that too, but I think I’d fall asleep if I did, so better keep going.
Steve, this would be paradise to you. Most people have bikes which you’d love, but like everything, it has its ups and its downs. The ups are it’s a great and healthy way to get around, but there are also a lot of people who walk, so the downside is that the paths are quite narrow, and not always easy to share. It’s ok if a cyclist rings a bell and you can move to walk single file, but if they don’t and are travelling 2 or 3 across, can be a bit scary.
Cards then another lovely dinner, discussed our plans for tomorrow before we get the train at just after 5pm to take us to the Airport station. Marcel will come to the airport with us as he loves the trains and doesn’t mind the return trip at night. Not sure what Trudi will do.
Cards and bed.