The Writing Life · Travel

A Day in Zurich Part I

Today we traveled from Lausanne to Zürich. We walked from our hotel to the metro and headed to the central train station. We arrived just in time to hop on our train.

The ride was more scenic than the one to Lausanne because we selected a route that went along the lake. I’m such a water girl.

As I stepped off the train in Zurich, I felt as if I had walked into a scene from a WWII movie. Maybe it was German on the intercom or the huge clock hanging from the ceiling, but I felt out of sorts. It took me a moment to get acclimated.

Driving through Zürich wasn’t very picturesque. It felt much more industrial than Lausanne. And when our taxi driver turned down this one street, I thought where and the hell is he taking us. There was nothing but precast concrete apartment buildings on either side of the street. Hardly, the place for the nice hotel Michael had promised me. It wasn’t until later that I would find out Michael thought the same thing. The hotel appeared on top of the hill as we rounded the curve.

After we checked in, we headed to the hotel restaurant for lunch. I ordered chicken soup because I didn’t want anything too heavy. The server brought this square-shaped bowl with a few springs of green and kennel-sized pieces of chicken on the bottom. Then she poured broth over them. I was disappointed there was no additional chicken. Michael’s chicken Caesar looked way better. What my chicken consommé lacked in volume it made up in taste. Thank goodness Michael shared some of his salad with me.

Shopping was next on the list. We took a fifteen-minute shuttle to the city center. It dropped us off across the street from The Limmat River, which also has a view of the Alps. I didn’t bring a camera, so I took a few shots with my phone.

We walked down Banhoffenstrasse, where all the high-end shops like Tiffany’s, Gucci, Chanel, and Dior are. Several of the stores were closed or closing. We went into Doir in hopes of finding specialty perfume that is hard to find in the States. Of course, they had it. Michael bought it while I continued down the street to see if I could catch any more open stores.

I had an epiphany as I walked from window to window. Every high-end shopping district looks precisely the same. With that thought, I abandoned the idea of going in any more of those stores.

I could see more shops and restaurants down these pedestrian paths between the buildings. They looked so cute. I had to investigate. In the middle of the square was an organ grinder. I pulled my phone out and snapped a quick shot. I also took a photo of a plain-looking church along the way. I wish I had brought my camera.

Most of the little shops were closed, but I managed to find one that sold scarves, hats, purses, and gloves. I needed a hat because it was supposed to be colder in Spain.

To my delight, the winter hats, scarves, and gloves were 50-70% off. I bought a burgundy cashmere hat and the most beautiful leather gloves for less than $200.

Michael and I met at this rooftop bar for a drink. There were no seats inside, so we sat outside but drank pretty quickly. It was too cold for both of us.

We took an Uber to Belvoirpark, a Michelin rated restaurant. My chicken consommé had completely worn off. The meal started with a lamb salad with fried bacon. It seemed interesting, so I ordered it. I confess I thought it would have lamb in it. But I guess the lettuce is called lamb lettuce.

I had Guinea fowl breast and polenta. But for my taste, dinner was too long. Everything was a dramatic production. But I suppose the real issue was me. My ankle was throbbing again, and I just wanted to go to bed. We skipped the grappa and the coffee and headed back to the hotel.

Tomorrow we head to Spain.

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