Friday, August 22, 2008
Day One: Geneva to Interlaken
To take the scenic route we drove along the south shore of Lac Leman through the French towns of Evian and Thonon-les-Bains. Driving through lakeside villages is quite picturesque, and quite slow. We were getting quite peckish and we weren't yet back in Switzerland! We finally made it to the opposite side of the lake and stopped at a grocery store for some lunch. The the real driving started as we turned onto the roads leading through the Col-des-Mosses, through the Pays-d'Enhaut, and entering into the Bernese-Oberland mountains on the way to Interlaken. I quickly learned how to downshift while going up the steep, sharp corners. To be honest, I was pretty impressed with my driving. Of course several times we wound up "trapped" behind a big bus. This was a relief as I was free to go even slower than I wanted. The line of cars behind me might curse me for not trying harder to pass the bus, but not for driving too slowly.
Once in Interlaken we found the tourism office to enquire about the weather for the next couple days as our planned outing choices would depend on weather conditions. All looked good. We found the campsite and put up our tent for the first time with just the two of us. Between having taken the scenic route and putting up the tent, it was past closing time for grocery stores on a Saturday (5pm!!). We set off to find the way to the train station and then to find some dinner. Our poor darlings were really getting famished and the couple restaurants we passed were not exactly the price-range we had in mind. It looked to still be a good-sized walk to get into downtown when we saw a more moderately priced venue....Hooters. The kids were tired and so was I, so we marched in and found a table. The waitress was traditionally attired (Hooters tradition, not Swiss).
Well fed, we made our way back to the campsite and the inaugural sleeping bag bedtime. "There is no video." Was more of a statement by L than a question. We never heard mention again of our normal routine of a 20min DVD episode before bed (the only "TV" the boys get). We read a story by flashlight and zipped the boys up in their sleeping bags. Then the fun began. Talking, giggling, wrestling. "Okay guys, it's time to go to sleep" was relatively ineffective. This was their first camping experience though and I thought that they should enjoy the post-bedtime giggles so we waited them out until they eventually fell asleep.
M woke up about 6:30 the next morning so I pulled him out of the tent and we wandered to the recreational area. I let him have some breakfast and tried to keep the noise level down until the magic hour of 7am arrived. But that's another story...