More from Maria today – I guess she’s got to go across the ocean to get used to email!


Hi everybody,

Here we are in Switzerland, and it’s awsome beauty I can not discribe. Outside our hostel we see a high horizon of snow-covered peaks that change with the sun’s light as the day goes by. The peaks turn pink at dusk. We arrrived yesterday by the most interesting travel modes yet.

We got on the subway in Paris at 6:30 am, found our reserved seats on the train (after tramping through 6 cars in one long sleepy line). We transfered in Basel, Switzerland, to Interlachen. The lake in Interlachen dazzled us all with it’s clear, blue-green color as we passed by it at a slow “city train” pace. We then headed for the money exchange point of our choice (several different requirements within our group) and hopped on the small local train that splits in the middle halfway to Lauterbrunnen, our destination. Savy travelers that we are, we were on the correct section. Next we shopped for groceries at the Swiss Co-op (grocery store), stocking up for the next day or so.

Soon a bus came by to take us to Schtekelberg, and we stepped off the bus to pile in to a Funnicular (giant gondola) which floated high above the valley to the lovely town of Gimmelwold where we finally entered our destination, the Mountain Hostel.

Today various groups hiked the valley, a trail to the underground glacier, and to the neighboring town of Murren. All the hikes were awsome and exhausting and we felt exhilerated to have met the challenge of the slopes that are NEVER level.

Tomorrow will be a trip to the waterfall under the mountain, along a trail that takes us under Mt. Schilthorn, which we are sitting atop as I write.

Everyone is getting along great, holding up fabulously to the rather demanding travel schedule, and making the most of their time here on this wonderful continent. We can’t wait to tell you about our accommodations here — most unusual, most interesting…

More later when we have arrived at the conference in Berlin.


Singing all the way… “funiculi, funicular, faniculiiiii, funiclu-ar-ar-ar-ar-ar-ar, funiculiiiii, funicular… my knapsack on my back…”

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